Mar 292011

This is of interest with reference to the work being done by RSP and JISC on open access repositories:

There is no mandate for DORA to contain full-text copies of all outputs although it is encouraged where it does not contravene copyright.

The first couple of comments on the article are also interesting.

Mar 252011

The first focus group meeting took place on the 24th March.

The discussion was very helpful covering topics including mane authority, file formats and archiving, the use and perception of DORA and future modifications and improvments.

Many thanks to those who took the time to come.  Your comments and suggestions will be combined with the results of the survey to inform changes to DORA.

We look forward to the next meeting on April 13th.

Progress continues in other areas of the project:

A useful meeting has also been had with the Marketing team organising the new University website which was very productive and we are able to move forward as expected albeit with a possible time delay.

The survey is nearly complete and should go live next week as expected.

Hopefully more to report soon

Mar 182011

This forms one of what will be regular updates on the progress of the project:

The technical work is well underway.  A review has been made of the functionality contained within the outputs of AIR and Kultur.  Work is now taking place to look at incorporating this functionality into DORA in the most appropriate way possible.  This does rely on the new CMS for the DMU website being in place for the final stage and this is expected later than anticipated so there may be a delay to deployment of some functionality but it will still occur with in the project lifetime.

The Focus Group will meet next week.  The All User survey has been drafted and is expected to go live by the end of March as expected.  Work is also beginning on the DMU model which will formalise the advocacy work of the project.

So far so good!

Mar 082011

Project AIR was concerned with the automatic and hands off population of OAI-PMH compliant Open Research Archives with linked data taken from institutional web sites .  A high aim indeed which is recognised and mollerated.  The tool crawls a web site to find research output for academics local to the institution.  Machine learning combined with a web crawler make up the meat of the project.  It is hard to extract linked data from a content management system where the content is at best prescribed and at worst free prose but either way not compatible with any system linking to a repository.  Another way to do this is by developing a culture around the submission of research outputs to the group responsible for the repository.  Cultures are very fluid things, they fade in and out of existence in different parts of an organisation and therefore a tool like this helps even if it doesn’t complete the effort.  The application of this tool to DORA will provide another way of adding outputs to the repository without manual input and repeated effort which is always of benefit to all users.

 Posted by at 9:16 am
Mar 082011

The Kultur project was funded by JISC. It was undertaken by Universities of Southampton, Arts London, Creative Arts and the Visual Arts Data Service. The project hoped to address the need to manage non-text outputs effectively. The primary aim was to establish a shared practice across the sector which DMU hopes to benefit from.  The project effected this, essentially, by changing the way the popular EPrints Open Research Archive deals with different media; images and video, by looking at workflow, metadata, preservation, curation, IPR and by looking at the way different types of users approach typically cold or sterile user interfaces of research archives or repositories.  Repositories should go well beyond just being used for REF outputs!

The project worked with core standards; Dublin Core for metadata and the Joint Academic Coding System JACS for its subject classification  but the project also deviated from standards in line with the users’ needs.  Two profiles were looked adding the profiles; Images Application Profile and Moving Images Application Profile to EPrints.  The Moving Images Application Profile wasn’t finished before the end of the project but work continues.  It’s likely that the code will need to be re-visited as HTML5 matures.

In the implementation of the project:

  • the range of research activity was captured
  • metadata was added to to reflect the new media’s attributes
  • real examples were found early in the project
  • provision was made for digital capture of some research outputs
  • a user survey was performed
  • features added : lightbox, slideshow (and video viewer)
  • more features: tabbed abstract pages, visual search results

As part of the EXPLORER project we are looking to apply what was done and learnt during KULTUR to our repository.  De Montfort University’s Open Research Archive is built using DSpace which is a very different animal to EPrints.  On initial inspection, DSpace has the hooks for code to treat objects, in the repository, with differing media types accordingly.  This would probably mean a different HTML markup for each media type which will then be handled by the CSS or Javascript to perform the magic.  The university’s research archive officer and technical lead have said that DSpace will support differing workflows and styles which can be selected by the user.

We will work either with the latest DSpace stable code or with the SVN.  We will also look for DSpace plugins that match our needs or can be adapted.  We will keep the Blog updated with our progress.

Mar 032011

As part of this project we are getting together a focus group of academics and related staff to meet together and discuss topics including:

How DORA is currently used

How you think it could be used within DMU

Introducing some of the technical changes to be included in the EXPLORER project with an opportunity for feedback and suggestions

Ideas on how you think we can improve the service DORA provides

We are hoping to hold two or three discussion sessions in March and April – probably over coffee or lunch.

If you would like to joins us and help with this work we would be very grateful.  If you are unable to but have a suggestion of another member of staff who may like to be involved please do let us know.

Mar 032011

Alan and Beth attended the first Programme Meeting for the JISc projects in our strand yesterday.  It was good to find out what others are doing and we made some useful contacts.  Hopefully we will be getting more involved with Kultur2 and Kultivate which will be very helpful.

We are now looking into the format of the questionnaire for DMU staff and finalising the membership of the focus group.  If there are any members of DMU staff who want to be involved with this please contact  This will involve taking part in two or three discussion sessions in the next couple of months to talk about DORA and how you feel we can improve it and integrate it better within DMU.

One difficulty is the apparant disappearance of the source code for the AIR project plug-in but otherwise the project is proceeding on schedule.  Hopefully the code will reappear soon.