RSP EPrints Training Day

The Repositories Support Project has teamed up with ECS at The University of Southampton to offer a free one-day training course on EPrints in London on 19th January 2011.

Dave Tarrant and Patrick McSweeney from EPrints will be the trainers and the course will be aimed at technicians managing established repositories. This will mean that the course content will focus on maintaining and customising the software rather than installation and setup.

For more details and booking information see the RSP web site.

RSP Winter School

Armathwaite Hall

The RSP Winter School will be held from 9th – 11th February 2011 at Armathwaite Hall in Cumbria. This is a three day residential course which aims to provide a varied programme addressing topics related to repository management.

The programme includes: Keynote address from Martin Hall, Vice-Chancellor, University of Salford, updates on projects relevant to repositories, in depth workshops on embedding repositories and measuring performance/demonstrating value andpreservation.

Further details and booking are available here.

Research data: policies and behaviours

Last week (18th November), I attended an evening event organised by the Research Information Network at the Royal College of Physicians.

Image by Ian-S

There were three excellent speakers. Andrew Young, Director of Research from John Moores University, Carole Goble, School of Computer Science, University of Manachester and Kevin Ashley, Director of the Digital Curation Centre. The panel was chaired by Professor John Wood, Secretary-General of the Association of Commonwealth Universities.

The consensus was that researchers are currently reluctant to share data and in order to change this culture, we need to be aware of the risks and rewards in doing so. Carole Goble coined the wonderful phrase of “data mine-ing” and she quoted from the recent RIN Report on e-Infrastructure: taking forward the strategy: “my impression of researchers, and I can criticize myself in this, is that we’re much more interested in sharing data when we mean sharing someone else’s as opposed [to] sharing ours”. Encouragement and reward were seen as more effective strategies than coercion, the latter can lead to pseudo sharing where data are shared but so poorly curated that they cannot be reused.

The importance of good management and curation was a key theme but this comes at a cost that has to be factored in. And data managment isn’t as appealing as research to those in the field. In later discussion, the issue of training information professionals to take on this role was raised.

Good curation can ensure that the researcher is properly accredited and this will be an incentive for more data sharing. Data citation could become as important as article citation in the future. And in the same way as a well written paper is more likely to be cited, so will a well curated dataset.

In all it was a very interesting event – the speakers were all thought provoking, as were the questions and comments from the floor.

The case for open access

Repository managers are often looking for succinct summaries of the case for open access that they can use in their institutions. I recently came across this paper from Alma Swan which fits the bill: Open Access impact: A briefing paper for researchers, universities and funders. It addresses the following areas: global access, citation advantage, institutional benefits, knowledge transfer and economic impact.

Another useful paper from Fred Friend has also recently been released: The impact of Open Access outside European universities.

Installing DSpace on Debian 5

Lathe operator machining parts for transport planes (LOC)

This post is very similar to my recent post covering installation on CentOS but some of the processes are slightly different for the Debian flavour of Linux. This post should cover everything Debian users need to get up and running with DSpace, although it does not cover configuration of the Handle server.  This is described adequately by the official documentation.

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Software Survey 2010

Some officers studying a map of newly captured ground

Today we have made public the results of our 2010 survey of repository sofware.  We first carried out this survey in March 2009 so this November 2010 version shows the changes that the software vendors have made over the last 18 months or so.

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