Closing RSP


This is the final blog posting for RSP, as we have now suspended activities with the end of our current funding period on 31st July 2013.

As the final post, it seems appropriate to review a little of what we have done. The Repositories Support Project (RSP) has been running since November 2006, funded by JISC as part of their strategic support for Open Access and repositories in UK Higher Education.

During this time the RSP has run 93 events and 7 residential schools, attended by over 1,500 delegates from 257 different organizations. The RSP has hosted 16 webinars for over 1,000 delegates, of which 270 were international from the USA, Ireland, Lithuania, Spain, Portugal, Mexico, Argentina, South Africa, Canada, Nigeria, Italy, Germany and other locations.

But of course our focus has been the UK. Within the UK, in addition to our face-to-face events, RSP staff have carried out nearly 100 consultancy visits to individual institutions; produced over 70 publications; maintained an active website, helpdesk and helpline; assisted UKCoRR, and taken the repository message out to stakeholders and policy makers in UK funding, research and Higher Education in committees, reports and conferences.

A large number of staff have worked under the RSP banner over the years: Mike Hopkins, Bill Hines, Stuart Lewis, Jackie Knowles, Chris Yates, Hannah Payne, Liz Lyon, Rachel Heery, Maureen Pennock, Steph Taylor, Michael Day, Pete Cliff, Les Carr, Steve Hitchcock, Stephen Pinfield, Gareth Johnson, Mary Robinson, Sophia Jones, Rob Ingram, Peter Millington, Jane Smith, Dominic Tate, Emily Nimmo, Willow Fuchs, Laurian Williamson, Nancy Pontika, Emma Kilkelly, Jackie Wickham and me, Bill Hubbard.

Our thanks to everyone and forgive me if I have missed anyone from the list!

Thanks also to all of the external speakers, authors, consultants and experts that have contributed to RSP events, publications and advice.

And of course, our thanks to JISC for funding the RSP over the years and their commitment and belief over the successive iterations of our activities; in particular to our JISC Programme Managers and others; Neil Jacobs, Amber Thomas, Andy MacGregor, David Flanders, Tom Franklin, Neil Grindley and Balviar Notay.

Since we started, the number of repositories in the UK has tripled and the growth of the open access environment has allowed all the recent policy developments. This growth is due to the hard work and dedication of the repository advocates and administrators in each institution and I trust that the RSP has been useful to you in your work.

As for the future – for repositories, certainly, the future is bright. The current moves with the RCUK policy and universities’ responses to this in balancing OA publishing and OA archiving; the eventual HEFCE policy towards repository access and REF 2020; the European initiative for OA to all funded work; Research Data Management and the promise of linking data to publications through – what else – the repository: all of these things mean that as a community we have significant work and significant gains to be made in the next few years.

For the RSP, its events, publications and the support service – who knows! We have amended the website to allow it to stand as a resource for repository support and made the publications, podcasts, and materials available for re-use as well as listing the events and making available, where we can, the associated presentations for your use.

As for direct support, there may be opportunities in the future if the community need is there for a support project. If you have individual needs, or need consultancy analysis and advice, then get in touch with us here at the CRC. The team here at the CRC in Nottingham will, of course, be continuing with other national and international projects and in providing SHERPA Services RoMEO, JULIET, OpenDOAR and FACT – so we will still be working with you.

On behalf of all of the RSP team, my thanks to all of you that have been in touch with us in the past few days with thanks for our work and good wishes for the team: it has been very rewarding to hear how we have been valued. For now, good luck with your repositories!


Free Workshops: How to make your Repository OpenAIRE compliant

Interested in learning more about making your repository compliant with the OpenAIRE infrastructure to support and monitor the implementation of the FP7 Open Access pilot?

Want to help your faculty members comply with the Open Access requirements of the European Commission (EC)?

Want to add EC project data to your repository records and use OpenAIRE value-added functionality (post authoring tools, monitoring tools through analysis of document and usage statistics)?

Register for a free online workshop on Monday, January 23, or Tuesday, January 24: How to make your repository OpenAIRE compliant.
Event dates and duration: Monday, January 23
10:00 – 11:00 CET (proprietary platforms);
11:30 – 12:30 CET (DSpace repository platform);
14:00 – 15:00 CET (EPrints repository platform);

or Tuesday, January 24
11:30 – 12:30 CET (EPrints repository platform);
14:00 – 15:00 CET (proprietary platforms);
15:30 – 16:30 CET (DSpace repository platform);
(please choose the date most convenient for you)

A draft agenda and more information can be found here.

Registration is free, but required. RSVP by Friday, January 20, to  stating your name, email address, job title, repository name and URL, repository platform and country.

And/or Book an individual consultation with the OpenAIRE team members on Wednesday, January 25, Thursday, January 26, or Friday, January 27. Contact person: Pedro Príncipe, Open Access Projects, University of Minho,

More information about January as OpenAIRE compliance month is here:

DSpace workshop, Friday 20 May, Edinburgh

RSP ran an introductory training workshop in Edinburgh on Friday, bringing together a small group of repository practitioners with a range of experience from those wishing merely to fill in gaps in their knowledge to complete beginners.   Although DSpace users are still in a minority in the UK as compared with Eprints, I was surprised to hear that the majority of delegates had not accessed any DSpace training until the RSP workshop.  Our training took place in Edinburgh University Library and, when we weren’t concentrating on our screens,  we enjoyed lovely views over the meadows through the full height widows of the training room.

Our trainers, Rob Ingram and Ianthe Hind, provided us with a thorough introduction to working with DSpace and a good grounding in the basics. In addition to this there was plenty of time throughout the day to have group discussions where delegates shared their experiences and addressed particular issues with answers coming not only from the trainers but also the group.  This provided a really excellent balance for the different needs of the delegates. Towards the end of the day we enjoyed an interesting discussion on the use of statistics in DSpace with general agreement from the room that unique downloads are one of the best measures of success for a repository and also that community by community statistical comparisons can be a useful tool to generate healthy competition between depositing departments and more interest in the repository as a whole. Ianthe also pointed us to Graham Trigg’s talk at OR10 on enhancing statistics  which gives a really good overview of the options available.

One issue that came up for most institutions was the need to integrate with their CRIS. As we get closer to the REF this is an issue that is likely to come up for most repository managers and administrators.  There is work underway exploring best practice methodologies and approaches for this issue for example the JISC funded RePOSIT project, and readers may be interested in attending the upcoming RSP event ‘Repositories and CRIS: working smartly together’   in July this year.

SHERPA/RoMEO for Repository Administrators- A Day in the Sun

Image authors own : Water Feature in Aston Business School Conference Centre

It has been a busy week for RSP with the ‘SHERPA/RoMEO for Repository Administrators’ event on Thursday (24.03.11) and  ‘Supporting and Influencing the deposit of E-Theses in Higher Education’ on Monday (28.0311). It’s set to continue to be busy too as we are holding ‘RoMEO and CRIS in practice‘ on Friday (01.04.11)!

I’ll start with a quick run through of ‘SHERPA/RoMEO for Repository Administrators’, and post later about our Etheses event. We  had a beautiful day for the event with the sun shining on us in the lovely rock garden courtyard at Aston Business School Conference Centre as you can see from my picture of their water feature.  The day started off with Jane Smith from the SHERPA Services team giving us a run through of some of the newer features of RoMEO before a question and answer session with herself and the rest of the team. We broke for coffee and returned for an entertaining presentation from Andy Gray from SOAS, but formerly of University of the Arts London, on his experiences of working in Arts repositories and the particular copyright this field can throw up. And true to his Artistic background he gave a really colourful and beautifully illustrated presentation, You can download all the presentations from the day here.

Next up was Charles Oppenheim, one of the UK’s foremost experts on Copyright. Charles regaled us with interesting anecdotes and answered a host of questions from the audience.

Following a delicious lunch, and networking in the sun lit courtyard we returned for the afternoon programme which kicked off with another case study, this time from Valerie Spezi of Leicester research Archive focusing on their workflow and how they use RoMEO as part of their copyright checking. Valerie also gave the team a lot of useful ideas from her wish list of RoMEO services.  We were next to hear from Rachel Proudfoot of the White Rose Consortium, however due to the UCU strike action that day Rachel was unable to join us. We were really quite lucky that this was the only disruption the strike action had on our event, other’s were less lucky. Jane Smith stepped into the breach and led the session as Rachel had planned it. We split into groups and discussed the four scenarios provided and shared experiences about contacting publishers.

We broke again for even more coffee and biscuits before returning to hear about the future of RoMEO from Peter Millington and Azhar Hussain.  Peter described future features and Azhar introduced the delegates to the work he has been doing planning for the sustainability of RoMEO in a future where public funding is increasingly scarce. It was clear from the lively question and answer session at the end of the day that the delegates were understanding of the challenges faced by the team and were very happy to engage on ways forward. What was very clear was the RoMEO is vital to the activities of repository staff on a day to day basis and that they are very invested in its continuing future.

You can read the SHERPA Services team’s blog on the day here.

Running DSpace on a Root URL

Roadside Eating on Hylan Boulevard in Staten Island 06/1973

By default a DSpace installation will be set up to run on a URL something like or depending on which interface you prefer. In a comment on my past post regarding installing DSpace on Debian 5 I was asked how to run DSpace on the root of the URL, e.g. I had done this in the past but didn’t have a reference to hand so I tried it out on a fresh installation of DSpace 1.7. Here is what I did to get it working.
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RSP EPrints Training Day

# Two women employees of North American Aviation, Incorporated, assembling a section of a wing for a P-51 fighter plane

On 19th January RSP in association with EPrints ran a training event on the EPrints repository software. We were deliberately aiming the training at institutions that already had a repository up and running so that the focus could be on managing and customising the repository rather than the installation process.

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New preservation guide

A new preservation guide has been released from the KRDS projects.

From the release: ” KRDS is a cost framework that can be used to develop and apply local cost models for research data management and long-term preservation . . .  establishing many key “rules of thumb” for digital preservation costs and approaches to sustaining digital research data. Even those who do not wish to or cannot allocate the resources to develop local models based on KRDS are likely to benefit from its key findings and exemplars . . . ”

This provides a useful four-page summary for management discussion, as well as the larger user guide, which includes the useful case studies from Southampton, Cambridge, Kings, Oxford, UK Data Archive and elsewhere – and the model itself.


New RSP Web Site Launched

Screenshot of the brand new RSP web site

The RSP is proud to announce the launch of its new web site featuring a cleaner design and navigation structure. The aim is to make it easier than ever to find the information you need from RSP and to get in touch with us if you would like more direct help with any repository related issues.

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Social and mobile: a threat to open access?

Online Information 2010

This week, I’ve been at Online Information 2010 so managed to avoid the heavy snow at home. As a presenter, I had a free place so fortunately was able to stay for the whole three days. However, for a blogger this creates a problem – what do I include and exclude! So instead of trying to do that, I just want to focus on the theme highlighted by the keynote speaker, Dion Hinchcliffe, in his talk entitled “Network Shock: How the dominance of social and mobile are remaking life and business”.

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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.