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From: Chanier Thierry <thierry.chanier_at_univ-fcomte.fr>
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 2009 18:34:12 +0100

Dear all,
I agree. The question of tools for central repository (CR) is central.

- it is preferable to avoid opposing CR and (Institutional repository) IR.
In some countries, CRs may be prominent (particularly because local
institution have a low status, so IR may not mean much to researchers ...
when they exist), because centralized procedures for evaluating research
may offer opportunity to researchers to start depositing - see hereafter
about France -).
- Researchers should be free to choose where they deposit but with
requirements to deposit. They may do it in different repositories (I mean
one document is only in one place, but depending on the nature of the
document / data, one may choose various repositories)
- It is a tactical decision for OA supporters, knowing the local habits,
to advertise ways of deposit to colleagues
- we have to make sure that people in charge of funding research (EU,
National) do not oblige researchers to deposit in one specific place
(their CR or any other)
- But I understand them, because when they ask researchers to give access
to their work and advertise the fact that they have been paid by them,
there are currently no practical way of doing it (labels put on deposit
with the name of the program which gave the money, and harvesters able to
compute this information ?)
- I also understand them because I feel that they want to add interesting
tools (search, computation, meta-engine), tools which could be developped
by central harvesters (CH). We are late on this issue and harvesters have
not made much progress (see hereafter).

See hereafter for details if interested.

Thierry Chanier

1) HAL and research evaluation
3 years ago I tried to convince my former lab to open a sub-archive within
HAL (same repository, but URL specific to the lab, with proper interface).
I also tried to convince my university to have a general meeting with
directors of local labs in order to invite them to do the same and, at
another level, to manage the sub-archive in HAL for the university (a
solution somewhere in between CR and IR). My colleague of the lab agreed,
started the work but gave up because of lack of time. My university never
answered to my proposal.
Now, thanks to procedures for evaluating research in France, lab will have
to choose the way they want to be evaluated(I mean the technical
procedure to achieve it). Some software used by the national board will
make computation out of HAL. Consequently, my lab decided this week to
urgently re-open and manage its sub-archive in HAL. Of course, the first
thing they have to do is deposit of metadata. Actual deposit of
corresponding papers is not mandatory. But they will take the opportunity
to suggest to researchers to deposit as well their full papers.
Last thing : I do not mean that in France, only HAL should be used. We
should make sure we have the choice to deposit where we please.

2) Harversters : advantages and current limits
Just a personal experience. Till recently I used to advertise my list of
publications by giving the URL of an open archive Edutice (a thematic one,
VERY USEFUL in our domain, sub-part of HAL but with its local procedure,
interface, etc.).
Now I give to colleagues the OAISTER URL (with the path to follow) to get
all my publications (because some of them are in other archives).
The problem is : deposits in Edutice appear twice in the OAISTER list (as
deposits of Edutice and of HAL - but there is one only deposit).
It is a concrete exemple of progress which should be made to avoid
repetitions in harvesters (among many other new features).
****************************** end of Thierry's message ************

Le Mer 4 février 2009 22:12, Bernard Rentier a écrit :
> I agree. It is exactly what I was trying to say in my last paragraph :
> it is my belief that lauching a centralised and/or thematic repository
> (C-TR) can make sense, but only if it does not discourage authors from
> posting their publications in an institutional repository (IR),
> otherwise many publications will be lost in the process (I mean lost
> for easy and open access).
> In addition, direct posting in C-TRs will shortcut IRs and it will be
> a loss for universities in their attempt to host their entire
> scholarly production (this is just a collateral effect, I know, but
> being a University President, it is a worry for me).
> C-TRs are of much more interest if they collect data at a secondary
> level by harvesting from primary IRs.
> Bernard Rentier
> Le 04-févr.-09 à 20:22, Jean-Claude Guédon a écrit :
>> This is an old debate where one should carefully distinguish between
>> two levels of analysis.
>> 1. In principle, is it better to have institutional, distributed,
>> depositories, or to have central, thematic, whatever depositories?
>> 2. In practice, we know we will not escape the will by various
>> institutions to develop central, thematic, whatever depositories
>> (e.g. Hal in France). And these depositories will exist. The
>> question then becomes: how do we best live with this mixed bag of
>> situations?
>> Pursuing the battle on principles is OK with me, but it does not get
>> me enthused.
>> Pursuing the battle on the pragmatic, practical level, knowing that
>> various tools exist that will restore the distributed nature of
>> these depositories anyway, appears to me far preferable.
>> Jean-Claude Guédon
Received on Thu Feb 05 2009 - 17:42:33 GMT

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