Implementing the Symplectic API

We’ve made real progress implementing the Symplectic API which I hope will help motivate academic staff to update and maintain their Symplectic profile and, who knows, perhaps even encourage them to upload full-text to the repository! Kudos to web-developer Mike Taylor who has done all the clever stuff (though this summary reflects my understanding so may contain errors!)

As can be seen in the screen-shot below, Mike has been able to submit a query to the API (using Leeds Met username as a parameter) and differentially parse the resulting XML by publication type including, where available, links to DOI and full-text in the repository (currently labelled as Public URL). Symplectic also has the option to “favourite” records which is flagged in the XML and which we’ve use to identify “Selected publications” in order to give academics greater control over their profile (there is also a “make invisible” option to prevent specific records being exposed from the API.)

The next step will be to liaise with the corporate web-team to explore how the feed can be embedded in the institutional CMS. We’ve already picked a few brains and it shouldn’t be too difficult though there are still one or two technical issues including how best to submit a query; we wouldn’t want to use username as that would be a privacy issue and the preference would be email address though this will require a layer of translation from email address (which isn’t searchable)to either Leeds Metropolitan username or Symplectic internal user id. In addition, the API isn’t designed to be hammered dynamically so results need to be cached so there are questions how best to refresh that cache to reflect changes that academics may wish to make to their profile.


Research records – filling the gaps with Google Scholar + Zotero

The stated aim of our Symplectic implementation – and integration with the repository – is to make it easier to maintain a constant, up-to-date picture of research activity across the University…historically, however, research management has been somewhat variable across the institution…frankly I knew this already and the repository had become the de facto research management tool but is itself far from comprehensive. Nor are the automatic data sources (Web of Science, Scopus and PubMed) likely to solve the problem, with variable results depending, for example, on the subject area and types of publication; I have also been importing existing records from EndNote libraries …where they exist, but there are still large swathes of research missing over the past 10 years or so that we are trying to cover. Especially less formal publications.

Other than automated search, the easiest way to get data into Symplectic is by importing RefMan (RIS) or BibTex, both of which can be exported from Google Scholar, but only as single records (so far as I can tell), unless you use Zotero in FireFox…

1. Install Zotero in FireFox –
2. Go into settings in Google Scholar (top right)
3. Bibliography manager -> Check “Show links to import citations into” and select preferred output (RefMan/BibTex etc) and save preferences
4. Now a search in Google Scholar should show a folder icon in the address bar. Click the folder.

5. A small window drops down that shows the Google Scholar citations, with an empty check box in front of each citation
6. Select the citations that you need and click “OK”

7. A small window pops up that indicates the records are being saved into Zotero
9. Open the Zotero window with the icon at bottom of browser where the records should be displayed (you can keep searching and sending additional records to Zotero for eventual export)
10. Highlight (select) the Zotero records that you wish to export. Right-click on the selection and select “Export selected items”

Choose the appropriate format (in my case RIS) and save the file to the desktop with an appropriate name for subsequent import to Symplectic / research management system of choice. Ta da!

Records in Google Scholar aren’t necessarily the most reliable so care will need to be taken with this process but it’s certainly worth exploring as a method of filling the gaps in our research records.

Extending the CRIS model to a ukoer workflow?

One of the conclusions of the Repositories and Preservation Advisory Group (RPAG), which advised the JISC Repositories Programmes between 2005 and  2009,  was that teaching materials had not been well served by attempting to integrate them into institutional repositories as they had very different workflows and requirements to scholarly works and other research outputs (thanks to Lorna Campbell – citation needed.)

It is still the case, I think, that research management infrastructure is generally further developed than that for OER including Open Access repositories and CRIS (Current Research Information Systems) most often commercial software implementations of Atira Pure, Symplectic Elements and Avedas Converis. Typically these systems are dynamically populated with records from the institutional HR database and are designed to allow staff to manage their own research profile. Arguably this reflects the greater prestige, real or perceived, still implicit in research activity compared with teaching and learning. Associated to this, academic libraries are primarily focussed on access to research materials and historically have not been closely involved with the management of teaching materials which, where they are available digitally, are often in virtual learning environments (VLEs) to which the library may not have access (Robertson 2010) and may be poorly integrated into the users’ view of library resources (Hirst, 2009)

At Leeds Metropolitan University we have established a “blended” repository comprising both research and OER and have worked closely with Jorum (the national OER repository in the UK) to ensure both that openly licenced material from across the sector can be “harvested” into our local repository and that institutional OER can be automatically disseminated to the national service. In addition, the library has implemented the EBSCO Discovery Service which provides a mechanism to explore a wide range of library resources including the library catalogue, electronic databases and, crucially, the repository meaning we are able to configure the respective systems to enable library users to utilise the main library search facility to discover a wide range of openly licenced material from across the UK Higher Education sector (see previous post). Finally, in order to make it easier to maintain a constant, up-to-date picture of research activity across the University we have also recently implemented Symplectic Elements which automatically retrieves bibliographic data from citation databases and enables files to be uploaded directly to the repository. Records can also be imported (e.g. from EndNote) or manually entered; resource type and metadata can be easily configured for sub-sets of users and the system can pass any MIME type to the repository which means in principle it can be extended for use by teaching and learning staff (who may not be research active) to curate OER and offer an easy deposit mechanism to the local repository and subsequently to Jorum.

This approach could have several benefits, particularly for non-research intensive institutions in a difficult economic environment for Higher Education, providing an OER workflow that is closely related to that for research and deriving greater value for money from the investment in technical infrastructure which in turn will also have the potential to increase the esteem, recognition and reward associated with openly licenced teaching and learning resources.

An institutional tangram – musings on developing an integrated research management system

“The tangram (Chinese: 七巧板; pinyin: qī qiǎo bǎn; literally “seven boards of skill”) is a dissection puzzle consisting of seven flat shapes, called tans, which are put together to form shapes. The objective of the puzzle is to form a specific shape (given only an outline or silhouette) using all seven pieces, which may not overlap.”

Having implemented an institutional repository at Leeds Metropolitan and learning by experience some of the difficulties associated with advocacy around the use of that repository (both for OA research and OER) I have become all too aware “that repositories are ‘lonely and isolated’; still very much under-used and not sufficiently linked to other university systems”. So said JISC’s Andy McGregor at an event called “Learning How to Play Nicely: Repositories and CRIS” in May 2010 at Leeds Metropolitan (see my report for Ariadne here). This quote is still relevant, though  perhaps a little less so than when I heard it nearly 2 years ago, thanks to the ongoing work of JISC and particularly the RSP. In any case, the event was a revelation for me and I have coveted a so called Current Research Information Management systems (or CRIS for short) ever since!

And now, in Symplectic Elements, I have one…or at least the components of one (click on image for full size.)

The finished tangram? (click on image for full size)

It’s a puzzle though. A tangram if you will…one with considerably more than seven pieces:

intraLibrary, Symplectic, institutional website, University Research Office (URO), faculty research administrators, The Research Excellence Framework (REF), academic staff, web-developers, bibliographic information, research outputs, Open Educational Resources (OER)…

In fact, this may well not be all the pieces…pretty sure a few have been pushed down the back of the settee. I’ll look for them later.

Anyway, tortured metaphors aside, I have become increasingly aware that working in a large institution, in a role that encompasses technology and institutional policy (though I’m not, by any means, a policy maker…or indeed a real techie) is largely about communication and getting the right people, with the right skills, in the right place at the right time! Absorb policy and technical requirements from senior stakeholders and communicate those requirements to the proper techies – while also trying to ensure any motivating passions of one’s own don’t get lost along the way – Open Access to research and Open Education in my case.

For various reasons, individual user accounts have never been implemented for our repository and historically it has been administered centrally from the Library. In Symplectic we now have a system that is populated with central HR data; all staff will have an account they can access with their standard user name and password from where they can manage their own research profile including uploading full-text outputs directly to the repository*. In addition, administration by the University Research Office and faculty research administrators will be more easily centralised (particularly for the REF).

* In actual fact this functionality is not yet available in lieu of development work from Intrallect to capture the Atom feed from Symplectic and transform with XSLT to a suitable format for intraLibrary. I think.

One of the clever bits of functionality used to sell the software is automatic retrieval of bibliographic data from online citation databases – we are currently running against various APIs, Web of Science (lite), PubMed and arXiv – but I think this may actually be a bit of a red-herring for an institution like Leeds Metropolitan – at least until more (preferably free) data sources are available (JournalToCs API please!); early testing has shown, at best, it will only retrieve a subset of (the types of) outputs that we will need to record and it will be necessary to manually import existing records (e.g. EndNote) as well as implementing other administrative procedures at faculty level to capture information at the point of publication, especially for book-items, monographs, conference material, reports and grey literature.

More important, I think, to ensure that academic staff actually engage with the software rather than just seeing it as a tool for administrators, is to re-use the data to generate a list of research outputs – a dynamic bibliography – on a personal web-profile which has the potential to dramatically increase the visibility of research including Open Access to full-text.

Developing staff profiles of this type has been something of an obsession of mine for a while; we explored doing so from the repository (using SRU and email address as a Unique Identifier) and did develop a working prototype. Symplectic, however, integrated with central HR data and with its more sophisticated API, should make it much easier, at least from a technical perspective, and we are currently liaising with the central web-team to develop something similar to this example from Keele University – (like us, Keele run Symplectic alongside intraLibrary.)

N.B. From the Symplectic interface, a user is able to “favourite” a research record and a flag comes out in the xml from the API which I understand is used on this page to display “Selected Publications”. DOI is also available from the API to link to the published version and if a user uploads full-text to the repository from Symplectic, this link is also in the xml – the first two records on this page include links to the full-text in Keele’s intraLibrary repository.

Our own Library web-dev Mike Taylor has been looking at the Symplectic API in detail and has put together a couple of prototype pages on a development server and after a meeting this week with a representative of the central web-team I’m reasonably confident we can move forward with this work fairly quickly…though there’s still a bit of a chicken & egg situation in populating the Symplectic database to then be re-surfaced via the API in this way.

There is also the question of whether we might alter our repository policy to become full-text only; one limitation of repositories across UK HE from an original conception (in the arXiv mould) of holding, disseminating and preserving full-text research outputs, is that they have in effect become “diluted” by metadata records for which it has not (yet) been possible to procure full-text or copyright does not permit deposit and “hybrid” repositories like ours, of full-text and metadata typically contain more metadata records than full-text (see figures from the RSP survey here). As I have argued on the UKCoRR blog, I think is makes sense to separate a bibliographic database (in Symplectic) from full-text only in a repository.

N.B. As Symplectic does not have the same search functionality as the repository, this approach has the potential disadvantage that it makes it more difficult to search across the entire corpus of research records (though one potential solution may be along the lines of that implemented by City Research Online which, in my view is rapidly becoming an exemplar of a research management system (Symplectic) + full-text repository (EPrints). Another good example is  St Andrews (PURE + DSpace) who presented a case study at “Learning How to Play Nicely: Repositories and CRIS” (video here.)

And what of OER? Along with our EasyDeposit SWORD interface, using OER to resource the refocus the undergraduate curriculum and the soon to be released intraLibrary 3.5 that will enable us to harvest OER from other repositories…for now I think they may be the bits down the back of the settee…

Infrastructure schematic (1st draft)

There are several significant developments that will impact on our repository / research management / OER dissemination and discovery over the next 12 months or so…briefly these are:

This is a quick schematic of how the developing infrastructure might look (a bit big to fit in my WordPress theme so click on image for full size):

Linking from a research paper to associated OER and thoughts on extending the CRIS model to OER

With our “blended” repository comprising research and UKOER, I still feel very much like I have a foot in two camps. A feeling that, ironically, is reinforced, by my role as Technical Officer for UKCoRR – the UK Council of Research Repositories!

I think I’m right in saying that it’s still atypical to manage both types of resource with a single repository platform and there are certainly considerations why it may not necessarily be desirable – both from a technical and political perspective.

The main repositories that have been developed as part of the ukoer programme are modifications to DSpace (Jorum) and EPrints (HumBox, EdShare), the two main open source repository software platforms that were both initially developed to manage research. In contrast, we have worked with intraLibrary, a commercial learning object repository, to manage both OER and research and while this certainly hasn’t been without it’s problems, I’m naturally interested in potential benefits from this approach both in terms of “reward & recognition” for OER by something analogous to peer-review perhaps (a theme that was explored as part of the Unicycle project) and also in terms of work-flow, possibly mediated via a CRIS-type system such as Symplectic Elements or Atira Pure…

intraLibrary has a workflow to link related resources which I can easily use to link a research paper with associated OER, so in the example below I can link…

Coates, C., Smith, S. (2010) Promoting the concept of competency maps to enhance the student learning experience. Assessment, Teaching and Learning Journal (Leeds Met), 10 (Winter), pp.21-25.

…to the three ALPS Common Competency Maps in the OER collection (see Linked Resources at the bottom of the record):

ALPS Common Competency Map – Communication

ALPS Common Competency Map – Ethical Practice

ALPS Common Competency Map – Team Working

These records, in turn, comprise links back to the research paper (and associated conference paper):

With such an approach, is there perhaps an opportunity to tie research and OER more closely together at an institutional level (if this isn’t politically naive!) and contribute to research led teaching?

The next stage might be to develop a common workflow for research and OER…

Workflow, in fact, has long been a bug-bear of mine and, for both types of resource, essentially remains fully mediated by me and administrative colleagues. In all likelihood, however, as are many institutions, we will soon be implementing a CRIS that will make it easier to collate institutional research outputs by harvesting research data from external bibliometric sources, as well as allowing records to be added manually, and integrating with the repository such that academic staff are able to attach an appropriate full-text to a record and upload it along with metadata into the repository directly from a “user-friendly interface” (TM).

At a recent demo of one of these types of system I confirmed that it could transfer a range of file-types to a repository (utilising SWORD) as well as allowing various licences to be configured including (I think) Creative Commons so there seems no fundamental reason why such a system could not be used to support the workflow for both OA research and OER.

Of course I will need to get my hands on one of these systems before I can properly investigate exactly what is achievable…watch this space.

Towards an integrated research management system (JISC bid pending)

Recently we submitted a bid to JISC for the Repositories: Take-Up and Embedding strand of Grant 15/10: JISC infrastructure for education and research programme.  I don’t know the result of the bid yet but will summarise it here, partly in the spirit of openness exemplified by @chriskeene and Joss Winn and partly because, if we aren’t successful, then I probably won’t much feel like making it public!

Naturally I hope we are awarded the bid but one thing that I have learned from previous bids – both successful and unsuccessful (or job applications for that matter) – is that nothing is ever wasted.  We worked hard on this and I’m confident that work will pay off. One way or another!

The bid (abridged)

RepRISE: Reproducing Research Information System Exemplars

Outline Project Description

Institutional Repositories (IRs) are well established in the UK. However, they require continuous development to ensure that they are sufficiently linked to other university systems and to encourage and allow full utilisation and maximum levels of deposit. The RepRISE project will build upon successful JISC funded repository projects in order to incorporate best practice into the Leeds Met repository and embed it into a developing infrastructure to support research management. It will integrate the IR with a commercial CERIF [Common European Research Information Format] compliant CRIS such that metadata/full text can be automatically deposited into the repository while integrating all systemic components with the University LDAP system to ensure outputs are tied to the same unique identifier across the infrastructure. Particular benefits to the community will be to elucidate the challenges of applying established and developing best practice in the context of diverse repository and CRIS software other than employed by the original projects.


To date, Leeds Metropolitan University has completed four successful repository related JISC-funded projects, establishing an intraLibrary repository which was chosen on the basis that it should support preservation and access to a broad range of materials, including both research and learning and teaching material.  We now have a well functioning multi-purpose repository which can be accessed via Leeds Met Repository Open Search at and currently exposes two main collections to public search – “Research” and “Open Educational Resources”.  Through the Unicycle project funded under the e-learning programme and Streamline and PERSoNA funded under the Users and Innovation programme we have developed tools and processes to improve the workflow for users of Research and Open Educational Resources. These projects have successfully engaged users of the repository and started the process of embedding its use into university strategy and procedures.  Work is ongoing to backfill the repository with full text and bibliographic records and to develop workflows to integrate with the research life-cycle to capture metadata and full text at the point of publication.

Leeds Metropolitan University’s developing repository infrastructure is representative of JISC supported initiatives since 2005 and Institutional Repositories (IRs) are now well established in the UK and internationally; however, they are often not sufficiently linked to other university systems and tend to be under-used and under-resourced with low levels of full-text deposit and require continuous advocacy to academic staff, the end-users who would benefit most.  Increasingly there is a developing relationship and overlap between Open Access research repositories and so called Current Research Information Systems (CRIS) that are increasingly being implemented at universities as well as benefits realisation of the SWORD (Simple Web-service Offering Repository Deposit) protocol to make it easier for academic staff to deposit scholarly outputs into a repository.

A potential additional benefit of a CRIS is that it will facilitate implementation of the CERIF [Common European Research Information Format] data model to better capture and share research information both, within the institution and across collaborating research partners, as well as with research funding bodies.  All the major commercial CRIS (Symplectic, Atira Pure, Thomson Reuters’s InCites) are now CERIF compatible and a component of the current proposal will be to investigate the use of CERIF in line with the recommendations of the JISC funded project, Exchanging Research Information in the UK (EXRI-UK)

Examples of CRIS/IR integration include:

  • The Universities of St Andrews and Aberdeen who have jointly procured the Pure research information system have carried out a lot of work embedding it with their respective repositories – Pure itself does not preserve full-text research outputs but is able to use the CERIF data model to link to external systems like the IR which, in turn, provides the technology to preserve full text and ensure metadata is harvested by OAI-PMH.  In addition, full-text deposit to the repository is mediated through the Pure interface itself giving an integrated system for the user.
  • A consortium led by the University of Leeds also comprising Keele University, Queen Mary University of London, University of Exeter and University of Plymouth who are currently working with Symplectic on the RePosit project which aims to “increase uptake of a web-based repository deposit tool embedded in a researcher-facing publications management system.”
  • The Enrich project at Glasgow University to establish their Enlighten repository as a comprehensive, University-wide repository and central publications database. It is also seeking to improve staff profiles by linking data from core institutional systems while working to ensure compliance with funders’ open access policies and reporting requirements and improving publicity for research activity and outputs.

Our Deputy Vice Chancellor for Research and Enterprise has emphasised the importance of developing our research infrastructure in order to focus on our areas of strength and continue to develop as we meet the challenges of future research assessments. The DVC is committed to implementing a CRIS at the University and work has already begun to specify institutional requirements of the system and establish capital outlay and ongoing costs to ensure sustainability.

The integration of CRIS/IR systems into an institutional research management infrastructure has the potential to dramatically impact upon advocacy initiatives around repository use and promoting Open Access to research.  Using repository data to feed the web-pages of individual academics and schools, for example, will provide an incentive to ensure repository records are comprehensive while the development of web-based interfaces for academic staff to manage their research outputs have the potential to make it easier for them to archive full text.

Deliverables (infrastructure)

  • To specify and implement a commercial CRIS
  • To integrate the CRIS with the existing Institutional Repository (intraLibrary) such that metadata/full text can be automatically deposited and data can be transferred between the two systems
  • To integrate CRIS/repository with the University LDAP system to ensure that outputs are tied to the same unique identifier in all systemic components of the institutional research infrastructure
  • To feed repository data to other areas of the University Web site, so that dynamic publication lists can be added to departmental or individual academics’ Web pages

Deliverables (use-cases):

  • To produce a detailed report on specific outputs utilised from other CRIS/IR integrations including JISC funded repository projects
  • To publish and disseminate a series of use-cases on adapting best practice from other projects focussing particularly on any issues around alternative CRIS/repository software
  • To publish and disseminate a series of use-cases on institutional requirements from an integrated CRIS/IR
  • To draw up a set of methodologies and approaches for building and engaging user communities within an institution on a subject discipline model
  • To develop use-cases exploring advocacy initiatives relating to the developing infrastructure  around repository use and promoting Open Access to research
  • To investigate the use of the CERIF data model to ascertain if it can be implemented within a timescale to facilitate its use in the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Value to the JISC community

This project will examine some of the most successful JISC funded repository projects as well as applications and services developed outside JISC funding in order to incorporate best practice into the Leeds Met repository and our developing infrastructure to support research management.  The large amount of JISC funds invested in repository development since 2007 and earlier has meant that the value of repositories is now well articulated in the sector; that value, however, is often still potential rather than it is real.  There is a wealth of good-practice and many institutional exemplars from which other institutions can learn and employ to improve their own services within the parameters of their particular requirements and existing infrastructure.

In addition to the Enrich and RePosit projects and the repository/Pure integration at St Andrews and Aberdeen, other projects that will inform the current project proposal include:

  • Open Research Online (ORO) at the Open University represents a service that is well embedded in the institution’s web-presence, using repository data to feed the web-pages of individual academics and schools.
  • CentAUR at the University of Reading has integrated their repository and HR database to ensure that staff are all able to log into the repository with their Reading usernames. The profile data are also the source of an autocomplete suggestion list for names entered into the Author/Creator field. When a name is selected from the list it is automatically associated with a unique ID and email address.

Particular benefits will be to elucidate the challenges of applying established and developing best practice in the context of diverse repositories, CRIS software and internal infrastructure over and above those employed by the original projects and including the potentially different institutional mission regarding research and the relationship between teaching and research.

Glasgow, ORO, Leeds, Plymouth and Reading all use EPrints software, the de facto open source OA research platform while St Andrews and Aberdeen use DSpace, another open source repository platform typically also dedicated to research management; Exeter uses Open Repository, a hosted solution from BioMed Central also based on DSpace while Keele University, with intraLibrary, is the only institution to use the same commercial platform as Leeds Met.  Keele also use Symplectic, a leading commercial CRIS, and have already worked with their commercial partners in order to link the two systems so that a full text and its bibliographic record can be pushed from Symplectic directly into intraLibrary; this project would allow us to build upon that work, either with Symplectic or another commercial CRIS, while also exploring the integration of the other institutional exemplars with intraLibrary.

As referred to above, a component of this project will also be to investigate the viability of integrating the CERIF data model into an institution where the existing research infrastructure is limited and within a timescale to facilitate its use in the Research Excellence Framework (REF).


At Leeds Metropolitan University, there is a well established relationship between the University Research Office and the Repository Development team which will help to ensure effective communication throughout the proposed project.  As outlined above, the Deputy Vice Chancellor for Research and Enterprise is committed to institutional investment in a commercial CRIS with work already underway to identify and procure a suitable system; Workpackage 1, therefore, is effectively already underway and, as such, will constitute the foundation of the current proposal allowing us to integrate the chosen system with our repository infrastructure more rapidly and more effectively than would otherwise be the case.

The project will be overseen by a Project Director who will hold regular meetings with the Deputy Vice Chancellor for Research and Enterprise in order to keep him up to date with progress.  The team will work on the adaptation of the SCRUM project management approach that they have used successfully in completing two earlier JISC funded projects – Bibliosight and JANUS and most recently in the ongoing HEFCE funded ACErep project; with monthly meetings of the core project team, with other stakeholders and technical advisors invited to meetings as necessary.



Success criteria, benefits realisation and sustainability

  • That a commercial CRIS is implemented and integrated with the Institutional Repository (intraLibrary), and university LDAP system such that metadata/full text can be automatically deposited from the CRIS into the repository and all outputs are tied to an author unique identifier across the institutional research infrastructure.
  • Data feeds from the repository are exposed to other areas of the University Web site, so that dynamic publication lists can be easily added to departmental or individual academics’ Web pages.
  • The CERIF data model is implemented and may be extended across the research infrastructure that has been tested in the context of the REF.
  • That skills and knowledge pertaining to research management using the CERIF data model are transmitted to relevant staff including URO, Repository Team and Academic Staff
  • That the team has published/disseminated a set of use-cases on adapting best practice from other projects focussing particularly on issues around alternative CRIS/ repository software.
  • That the team has compiled a set of methodologies and approaches for building and engaging user communities within an institution on a subject discipline model.
  • That the team has developed new advocacy initiatives relating to the developing infrastructure  around repository use and promoting Open Access to research

Sustainability of the project following completion is underpinned through the alignment of the project with the plans of the Deputy Vice Chancellor for Research and Enterprise to build an integrated research management system across the University.  This project represents an initial stage of that, and will be built upon over the medium term.


The project team will ensure tools and systems used in the project are used with the agreement of their creators and third parties where permissions are required for their use in this context.  All project outputs will be publicly and widely disseminated for reuse by the community with appropriate IPR statements clearly stated.

Risk register


Engagement with the community

As a high profile initiative headed by the Deputy Vice Chancellor for Research and Enterprise, the implementation of a commercial CRIS at Leeds Metropolitan University will be communicated within the institution through a centralised communication policy; institutional stakeholders will be actively involved in developing the infrastructure, through their feedback and participation in the development of use cases.

In addition to engaging institutional stakeholders and providing feedback to JISC, a key aim of the proposal is to disseminate our experiences to the wider community particularly in the context of implementation with alternative software and systems; this will be achieved by utilising social networking technologies as well as traditional live dissemination events; a blog will be included on the project website with cross-dissemination via Twitter, an approach that has been carried out very successfully for previous projects at Leeds Met – see and Members of the project team will use the blog to report progress and engage in discussion around project aims and objectives, milestones, any challenges the project might meet, and any other project activities.

The project team also has established links with the Repository Support Project (RSP) and is represented on the committee of the UK Council of Research Repositories (UKCoRR) an independent body for repository managers, administrators and staff in the UK that provides a forum for discussion and exchange of experience and represents the views and concerns of those who work with repositories in organisational, policy and strategic development. Both organisations hold regular meetings and events which will provide valuable dissemination opportunities.

Opportunity will also be sought to contribute to relevant publications. Project Officer Nick Sheppard has already published a detailed summary in Ariadne of the “Learning How to Play Nicely: Repositories and CRIS” event examining integrated, systemic approaches to research information management organised by the Welsh Repository Network and supported by JISC and ARMA at Leeds Metropolitan University in May 2010.



Previous experience of the project team