[OAI-general] Re: [OAI-eprints] Re: [BOAI] Re: Cliff Lynch on Institutional Archives

Thomas Krichel krichel@openlib.org
Tue, 18 Mar 2003 13:56:08 +0200

  Christopher Gutteridge writes
> For example; we are planning a University-wide eprints archive. I am 
> concerned that some physisists will want to place their items in both
> the university eprints service AND the arXiv physics archive. They may 
> be required to use the university service, but want to use arXiv as it
> is the primary source for their discipline. This is a duplication of 
> effort and a potential irritation.

  Faculty should be given the choice. They should not be required
  to do either one. arXiv have been doing a tremendous job at
  archiving. You are not going to replace them. But arXiv really
  only covers a small set of disciplines well. 

> Ultimately, of course, I'd hope that diciplinary archives will be replaced
> with subject-specific OAI service providers harvesting from the institutional
> archives.

  I would put this in different way, I'd say that there should be more
  interoperability between institutional archives and disciplinary
  aggregators. Such aggregators don't have a prime function of 
  archiving contents but to put the archival contents into 
  relations with personal and institutional data and
  document-to-document metadata such as citations. Rather
  than marking up the documents content in the institutional
  archive with subject classification data, it should be marked
  up with aggregator data. That is, for example, you may decide
  to export all the computer science papers to rclis. Thus
  you create an rclis set within and inform rclis of this. Then
  they can periodically harvest the data and feed it. In the 
  longer run, we need an extension to the OAI protocol to support
  this on a larger scale. In the meantime, it is perfectly feasible
  to do this here and now with the model aggregator service that
  it out there, the RePEc project. In fact, RePEc does this already
  with the California Digital library, thanks to efforts by
  Roy Tennant and Christopher F. Baum. So, to all those institutional
  archivers out there, if you have an economics department that does
  not already operate a RePEc archive, talk to them, talk to RePEc,
  and set up a OAI set with the Economics papers. It is better,
  within an institution, to proceed department by department and
  listen to what the academics want (and these wants will be 
  different in each department), rather than setting up one 
  archive that is supposed to satisfy everybody's needs at the
  risk of satisfying nobody's.

> What I'm asking is; has anyone given consideration to ways of smoothing
> over this duplication of effort? Possibly some negotiated automated process
> for insitutional archives uploading to the subject archive, or at least
> assisting the author in the process.

  It not a pressing concern as much as this appears, because
  discipline-based archives have, arXiv apart, not that much stuff.
  Discipline aggregators, RePEc apart, are still in their infancy.
  I am involved with others in setting up rclis, an aggregator
  for computing and library and information science. One thing
  should be clear: aggregator need years to develop and lots
  of TLC to sustain themselves. 
  But I repeat: it is best to listen to academics to tell you 
  what their needs are, rather than setting up procedures around
  a central institutional archive, The latter is what Clifford Lynch wants.
  I don't think that it will work.

  With greetings from Minsk, Belarus,

  Thomas Krichel                         http://openlib.org/home/krichel