ORWG Update – July 2019

The four task groups that make up the CARL Open Repositories Working Group (ORWG) have been very active over the past few months – this update will summarize the work we have been doing.  (Just a brief reminder that the CARL website features a page devoted to the Open Repositories Working Group, where you can find the group’s terms of reference, the terms of reference of its four task groups, a list of members, and links to any publications we’ve produced.)

Task Group for OpenAIRE: The group recently sent out a Call for Participation for a 3-phase OpenAIRE pilot. The pilot, which will involve nine Canadian institutions, will run from June to November 2019. The goal is to have all participating institutional repositories in the pilot be harvested by OpenAIRE and retrievable on OpenAIRE Search, and for all funding information to have been retrieved from Canadian public grants databases using OpenAIRE text and data mining techniques. A final report and recommendations for other Canadian institutions will be released once the pilot is finished. In addition to this pilot, the task group continues to make overtures to the Tri-agencies.

Task Group for Community Building & Awareness Raising: The Advancing Open event took place May 6-7 in Vancouver (the keynote by Juan Pablo Alperin and plenary discussions were recorded and are available here). There was considerable positive feedback from participants, who indicated that they often feel isolated at their institutions and would love to have similar opportunities for exchange every year (similar to the ABC Copyright and Access conferences). Next steps include distilling and synthesizing the discussions, approaching groups who were underrepresented at the event (Indigenous librarians, librarians from Atlantic Canada, librarians of colour, and francophone and Québec librarians), and the creation of a position paper to be released in early Fall 2019.  The group is also developing a Roadmap of their activities to be shared with the community very soon.

Task Group on Standards for IR Usage Data: Members of this task group have prepared a report with recommendations regarding collection of IR usage data across Canadian repositories which is in the final discussion stages and will be shared with the community soon. Working group members recently discussed the fact that as a community we hold vendors to a certain standard regarding COUNTER code of practice compliance, so it stands to reason that similar COUNTER compliance for our institutional repositories should be our goal. Nevertheless, we should have a shared understanding of the complexities of collecting, comparing and analyzing usage data, and should be aware of the context under which those statistics can be of value.

Task Group on Next Generation Repositories:  The discussions and activities by this task group have led to a report that is soon to be released entitled Digital Preservation Functionality in Canadian Repositories. This report will build on progress made through  the Portage Network’s Research Data Preservation in Canada: A Position Paper (released last year) and will address challenges around three main functionalities: bit preservation, preservation metadata, and export of archival information packages (AIPs); it will also describe additional services that may be offered by preservation service nodes.

Other news:  

  • ORWG was sad to lose Martha Whitehead at the co-helm of our group but are thrilled at the news that she has been appointed lead of the Harvard Library. The group welcomes Talia Chung, University Librarian and Vice-Provost (Knowledge Systems) at the University of Ottawa, who has replaced Martha as co-chair, joining Geoff Harder (University of Alberta), who is continuing as the other working group co-chair. 
  • The ORWG hopes to wrap up its core work by the end of December 2019, but will make recommendations to CARL as to future work that CARL should undertake in order to support the Canadian repository community going forward.

If you have any questions, please contact any of the members of the Task Group for Community Building & Awareness Raising: Leah Vanderjagt leahv@ualberta.ca / 780-492-3851, Ann Barrett (ann.barrett@dal.ca / 902-494-1669), Lise Brin (lise.brin@carl-abrc.ca / 902-318-4485), Amy Buckland (buckland@uoguelph.ca / 519.824.4120 x 53877), or Lindsey MacCallum (lindsey.maccallum@msvu.ca / 902-457-6402).