Re: Convergent IR Deposit Mandates vs. Divergent CR Deposit Mandates

From: Michael Eisen <mbeisen_at_LBL.GOV>
Date: Fri, 25 Jul 2008 11:22:24 -0700

I haven't followed this entire thread (I never can when Stevan is
involved...), but I would like to add a few thoughts.

The NIH had lots of reasons for requiring deposition in a central
repository. But one that I have not seen mentioned is that the NIH can
ask things of its grantees, but no authority to require that
institutions set up an archive of their own, and are particularly
reluctant do anything that might be perceived as an unfunded mandate.

And why is everyone assuming that the existence of an institutional
archive requires double deposits for authors who are also under a
funder mandate to submit to a central repository? Why can't authors
just simply submit to their institutional archive and then have the
archive pass on the paper to PMC along with the minimal extra meta-
data required (grant codes, etc...)? Or conversely why can't the
institutions just harvest information about their authors from PMC?
Alma seems to suggest there's something difficult about this, but if
institutional archives are the interoperable utopia Stevan and others
tout, this should be trivial. What am I missing here?

Michael Eisen
UC Berkeley/PLoS

On Jul 25, 2008, at 8:54 AM, Alma Swan wrote:

> Can I reply to Jean-Claude and others from a slightly different
> perspective,
> that of an institution now wanting to make its outputs OA?
> I spent yesterday at a large London medical school to which I was
> invited to
> talk with the people involved in research policy about establishing a
> repository and making their research Open Access. The invitation
> included
> the phrase: "because it is time we organised our research better and
> allowed
> access to it". In our discussions yesterday we had to deal with the
> fact
> that while over 90% of UK biomedical research is now covered by
> funder OA
> mandates (good), many of those mandates stipulate UKPMC as the
> deposit locus
> (not so good for the employers of the fundees - the universities).
> It's not
> so good because although this medical school can harvest a
> considerable
> amount of the material published by its employees from UKPMC, thus
> finding
> an easy way to start filling its own repository, this does mean it
> has an
> extra job to do. It's not a disaster, and CERN has been doing the
> same thing
> with arXiv for years, but it's another task for the repository staff.
> It also means that the medical school has to add a complication to a
> nice
> simple wording for its own policy, explicitly allowing those who are
> already
> under a funder mandate exemption from the medical school's policy of
> requiring researchers to deposit their work in that repository. For
> sure, it
> would be asking too much to demand that these people deposit BOTH in
> the
> institutional repository and in UKPMC. And the funders got there
> first. (And
> yes, researchers would balk at double - or more - depositing being
> required:
> I hear this complaint already and we've barely started with
> institutional
> mandates).
> True, we shouldn't get too wound up about this. Interoperability
> means that
> back-harvesting, forward-harvesting and upside-down-harvesting can
> go on
> wherever appropriate but it is a shame that we have arrived at a
> point where
> universities, the mainstays of our societies' research endeavours,
> have to
> develop more complex policies than would otherwise have been the
> case had
> funders simply directed their grantees to deposit their work in their
> institutional collections and harvested from there. The funders know
> where
> their grantees are, the repository software has a metadata field for
> funder,
> so the mechanics are simple. The benefit of such a move would have
> been to
> help the universities see the overall plan (earlier than they have
> done),
> ensure they put the right infrastructure in place and encouraged
> them to
> apply polices to cover *all* the research their employees do. The
> whole
> research community would thus be included and benefitting by this
> time, not
> just the biomedical community or other communities covered by big
> funder
> mandates. I would say that the research funders have rather let down
> their
> partners, the universities, in this sense.
> The other strand of discussion on this topic is always about where
> users
> find the Open Access information they want. The argument goes that
> they want
> to find it in subject-specific collections. Of course they do. It
> was never
> expected that searching specific institutional repositories would be a
> common practice - the whole point of OAI-PMH was to build what is
> effectively a worldwide research database, free to use, and that
> services
> would harvest and offer the packaged content of that worldwide
> database in
> myriad ways. So subject-specific collections, which are lovely,
> should be
> harvesting from the university repositories all the material that is
> relevant to that subject. They can provide all manner of nice
> services on
> that collection, tailored to the needs of that particular subject
> community.
> I thought that RePEc was an example of how things should work.
> Contributors
> of articles put them in their institutional collection and RePEc
> harvests
> them - actually, harvests the metadata - and presents to the economics
> research community a collection of free-to-access economic
> literature. I am
> at a loss to understand, then, why Thomas keeps apparently arguing
> against
> this model, since he himself has been instrumental in establishing
> it and
> showing it to be a success, and why others consistently hold it up
> as an
> example of good practice (which it is) while arguing the case for
> centralised deposit (which RePEc doesn't have). Or have I got the
> wrong end
> of the stick there?
> Alma Swan
> Key Perspectives Ltd
> Truro, UK
> P.S. The French, as always, will do things their own way.
Received on Fri Jul 25 2008 - 22:32:03 BST

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Fri Dec 10 2010 - 19:49:23 GMT