New JISC-funded Rights Metadata for Open archiving (RoMEO) project

From: Elizabeth Gadd <E.A.Gadd_at_LBORO.AC.UK>
Date: Mon, 9 Sep 2002 14:57:09 +0100

 Looking for RoMEO?
In Higher Education today there are many calls for change in the scholarly communication process. One suggestion receiving a lot of publicity is that academics 'self-archive' their research papers either by making them available on their own web pages, or by submitting them to an institutional repository or a subject-based archive. The Open Archives Initiative has supported this activity by developing an open standard by which metadata about the research papers can be disclosed and harvested, thus increasing the visibility and impact of the research.

Even though such research papers are 'given away' by academics, and metadata about them is freely created and disclosed, intellectual property rights issues are still being raised. Academics may not care who copies their paper, but who's to stop someone publishing it under someone else's name? Or altering the text in some way? Data providers may be pleased that their metadata is being harvested, but what if someone then starts selling access to it?

To address some of these questions, the UK Joint Information Systems Committee have funded a one-year investigation into the rights issues surrounding the self-archiving movement. The project, called RoMEO (Rights MEtadata for Open archiving), is based at Loughborough University and will run for one year until July 2003. The Project is being directed by Professor Charles Oppenheim, with Professor Stevan Harnad chairing the Advisory Board.

The principal aims of the project are to map all the rights issues relevant to the self-archiving of research papers in UK HE under the Open Archive Initiative's Protocol for Metadata Harvesting (OAI-PMH) and to consider ways of addressing them. One particular goal will be the development of some simple rights metadata which can be assigned by academics depositing papers in institutional (or other) archives, disclosed by data providers, harvested by service providers, and displayed to end-users, via the OAI-PMH.

The Project Team are inviting input from interested parties, in particular academics, publishers, OAI data and service providers, on the rights issues they face throughout the self-archiving process. Please contact Elizabeth Gadd, Research Associate, Project RoMEO, Dept of Information Science, Loughborough University, Loughborough, Leics, LE11 3TU. Tel. 01509 228053, Email.

Project web pages, including our first survey for academic authors, are now available at and will be updated throughout the course of the project.

Elizabeth Gadd, Research Associate &
Editor, Library and Information Research News
Department of Information Science
Loughborough University
Loughborough, Leics, LE11 3TU
Tel: +44 (0)1509 228053 Fax: +44 (0)1509 223072
Received on Mon Sep 09 2002 - 14:57:09 BST

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