The latest news from the Repository team at the University of Lincoln:
RSP Winter School 2011
I was lucky enough to attend the three-day Repositories Support Project Winter School (#rspws11), which this year was held in the impressive surroundings of Armathwaite Hall near Bassenthwaite in the Lake District. As you can see from my photos, it was a real hardship.
The programme included a keynote address by the immensely switched-on Professor Martin Hall, V-c of the University of Salford (and the first UK V-c on Twitter!), which touched on archaeology, museums, data preservation, open access, mobile learning, and the meaning of the modern university. The remaining speakers and discussions over the three days seemed to relate to two main topics:
- Data preservation and OA to datasets: Max Wilkinson on the work of the British Library and the BL datasets programme (bl.uk/datasets); Miggie Pickton from the University of Northampton about their ‘KeepIt‘ project to preserve university research data.
The consensus about research data seems to be this: don’t rely on your existing processes for your ‘publications’ repository. Keep a clear wall between a publications repository and a data archive. The requirements for describing/cataloguing, preserving, and providing access (sensitive data, etc.) are all just too different for datasets and publications. Also, there seems to be a general agreement that a more national, shared approach is appropriate for datasets than the strongly institutional focus of publication repositories.
- The options for CRISes and Repositories when gathering data for the REF: presentations from Keith Jeffery; Mark Cox
It slowly emerged that there seem to be at least two different approaches to REF data-preparation that universities are taking: some [generally large, research-intensive universities] are investing heavily in a CRIS (which is impacting on the role of the Repository); others [generally the smaller HEIs, though with notable exceptions] are developing and enhancing their existing Repository systems, and relying on EPrints/DSpace to do more heavy lifting.
Interestingly, there was relatively little talk of e-theses in all this. We did however manage to slip in an advert for the UKCoRR members’ meeting (tomorrow!)
Slides and notes from the various presentations and workshops are available to download from the RSP’s website.
Tweets bearing the Winter School’s hashtag #rspws11 are preserved in a Twapper Keeper archive.
Meanwhile, back home in Lincoln…
And at our regular Repository team meeting on Friday, 18 February. It seems to be a particularly busy time, Repository-wise, at the moment. Welcome to David Young who came to his first Friday team meeting.
Present: Bev Jones (BJ), Paul Stainthorp (PS), Rosaline Smith (RS), David Young (DY).
- We’ve hit 2,800 items on the Repository, which is a credit to Lincoln’s academic staff, as well as to the tireless efforts of RS and BJ! We’re aiming for 3,000 items by the end of April, 2011. If we hit that target, I’ll be doing some more baking.
- There are a number of useful training events on at the moment: some organised by the RSP (e.g. this one), as well as this extremely valuable-looking non-RSP event in Glasgow. Many of the events relate in some way to getting data in/out of repositories for REF purposes (c.f. the discussions at the Winter School, above). Unfortunately, Lincoln people aren’t able to attend many of these events, so PS and DY are going to meet to discuss the possibility of running/arranging a similar event in the East Midlands.
- The group discussed some EPrints tweaks: publisher search, the ability to ‘bounce’ a Repository record from one owner to another, the perennial unique author IDs …all of which are possible and in place in at least one other EPrints repository. We also touched upon our succession/emergency planning (i.e. how would the Library cope if and when the volume of Repository traffic outstrips our resource to deal with it: our “Plan X“.)
- RS updated us on the Kultivate project: there’s another workshop in London on Monday, 28 February; RS is still planning a meeting with the Faculty of Art, Architecture & Design. RS has issued her final reminder by mass email to academic staff, asking them to attend a Repository workshop or/and to get in touch to discuss depositing their items.
- BJ reported that all Repository records from the calendar years 2010/2011 (so far) are now identifiable to a quarter. (We need this level of specificity to produce our Quarterly Research Output Reports.) However, there’s still some confusion over exactly how we can construct date-limited queries in EPrints – BJ is going to ask on the eprints_tech and UKCoRR mailing lists to see if we can get a definitive answer.
- Now-quite-finally, I (PS) ran through a number of things I’m going to bring to the next Repository steering group: including technical developments and where we might need to take EPrints in the run-up to the REF, as well as improving the Repository’s presence on our corporate website. I’m also going to speak to the chair of the steering group (University Librarian, Ian Snowley) about the date of the next meeting.
- Did I mention it’s the UKCoRR meeting tomorrow?