Re: Eprints, Dspace, or Espace?

From: Philip Hunter <>
Date: Wed, 20 Oct 2004 12:50:35 +0100

Stevan, you wrote:

> All the main OAI-compliant archive-creating softwares are functionally
> equivalent, because after all, what they do is quite simple: They make
> sure that all deposited papers have the same metadata tags, the obvious
> ones: author-name, article-title, date, journal-name, etc., so that they
> are interoperable as well as harvestable by OAI service providers:

The focus of each of the OAI-compliant archive-creating softwares is
different, as you acknowledge, since some are designed to archive digital
objects in general, not just eprints. The functionality of the different
softwares differs on this account, and therefore there is a choice to
be made between softwares.

All deposited papers have the same metadata tags? Your definition of an
eprint is not up to speed. The Open Archives site FAQ reminds us that
"the metadata harvesting protocol supports the notion of multiple
metadata sets, allowing communities to expose metadata in formats that
are specific to their applications and domains. The technical framework
places no limitations on the nature of such parallel sets, other than
that the metadata records be structured as XML data, which have a
corresponding XML schema for validation."

> With DSpace (and SPARC) grew the "institutional repository" movement, and
> many more archive softwares, most of which have only loose ties with the
> OA movement, and are really intended for the showcasing and management
> of all of a university's digital holdings, not only, or especially,
> research journal articles and OA. As a consequence, "institutional
> repositories" (IRs) are (slowly) filling today with all kinds of material,
> very little of it being OA articles! And IRs tend to be focused more on
> the preservation and curation of university digital holdings than on
> providing immediate OA to all university research output so as to maximise its
> research impact, which is what OA is for.

Well perhaps the range of available softwares reflects what the user
community actually wants. Always a valid point to consider. :-)


Philip Hunter, UKOLN Research Officer.
UKOLN, University of Bath, Bath, BA2 7AY
Tel: +44 (0) 1225 323 668 Fax: +44 (0) 1225 826838
Email: UKOLN:
Received on Wed Oct 20 2004 - 12:50:35 BST

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