Tag Archives: repository

3 ways – the creation of an institutional repository

The beginning

From the perspective of someone still in the early stages of setting up an institutional repository (IR) at Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust, I would recommend checking out the IR toolkit on the KfH website, which contains loads of hints, tips and case studies, and I also picked up some great ideas from the #ukmedlibs chat on IRs on 16th January (transcription available here). To try and establish the scope of the IR, I’ve been having ongoing conversations with colleagues in R&D, Practice Development, and Clinical Education regarding requirements and content, and there are a range of potential platforms to consider, limited at this stage to existing systems in the trust (e.g. SharePoint) and free software such as Zotero. Andrew Brown

The middle

Oxford Health Foundation Trust Libraries (OHFT)have just signed an agreement with KnowledgeArc to host a repository to launch soon. The 2017 Sally Hernando awards highlighted this company as providers of the ‘ORDA’ repository shared by 5 Derbyshire Trusts. We found their model most suitable for us; affordable but offering the full functionality of DSpace, open source repository software.

We met with staff from key departments in our Trust; R&D, Comms, Clinical Audit, Learning & Development, and IT.  All were supportive; recognising the benefits of providing access to Trust authored publications as well as sharing knowledge about OHFT initiatives. The Trust web developer played a key role in our group, providing technical advice and assessment of the various options considered.

RDE and Derbyshire Hospitals were very helpful in sharing their valuable experience and knowledge with us.

Getting to this point took rather a long time. Next steps are to decide on a suitable name (!) and set up our communities/collections. Sarah Maddock

 

The end

Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust (AWP) has set up a digital repository using SharePoint.

Why SharePoint?

  • Facilitates collaborative working
  • Simulates database functions “Lists”
  • Offers flexibility and can present information in different ways for different user requirements “Views”

Lists

  • SharePoint is organised within lists and these function in a similar way to spreadsheets.
  • Lists are a very effective way to manage, store and manipulate information. Details of staff research and publications are held in a spreadsheet imported into a list.

Views

  • The repository has several views that present different aspects of the data relating to the publications; ‘All Research’, ‘AWP Sponsored Research’ and ‘Systematic Reviews’ to a name a few.
  • The data that is presented within these ‘Views’ is filtered according to keywords in the columns within the ‘List’.

In the longer term, once the data has been cleansed, organised, and managed within SharePoint, it should be possible to present it for inclusion in a wider repository solution across the NHS Library, Knowledge, and Information community subject to the requirements of stakeholders here at AWP. Steven Walker

How an institutional repository can add value and enable organisational knowledge to be shared.

Every year the information analyst in our Research & Development (R&D) department would spend weeks combing through PubMed, searching for Trust authored publications, assembling incredibly long and complicated search strings, comparing results against spreadsheets of names of Trust researchers… then assembling a publications report to attach as an appendix to the annual R&D report to the Trust board, or a spreadsheet of figures to send off to funding bodies. Reports which would then disappear into filing cabinets, or creaky hard drives, never to see the light of day again…

Until R&D and the Library worked together to launched the institutional repository!

The repository serves a dual purpose:

Firstly, the publications data is collected, checked and added to the repository on a regular basis (by library staff), saving the R&D department literally “weeks of time” (direct quote from a very happy information analyst).

Secondly, the publication details are made freely available online – showcasing all the research that takes place in the Trust.

This data was already being collected, but placing it in the institutional repository added value to it by making it:

  • Visible, searchable, discoverable
  • Organised – by division, specialty or department
  • Shareable – easy to Tweet about new articles, embed RSS feeds of new articles into subject resource hubs/intranet
  • Connected – linking research articles to research projects on the Trust’s research information systems
  • Open Access – including full-text versions of articles within publisher’s permissions, or linking to articles on publisher’s sites.
  • Promotable – ability to create researcher profile pages listing publications (good for CVs!)
  • Patient engaging – research participants can see what has been published in the studies they have been a part of

Institutional repositories don’t have to be limited to just published journal articles, they can also include other organisational assets such as patient information leaflets, Trust reports and publications, conference posters, innovations…the possibilities are endless! Your IR can either be internal or external facing depending on the content (your innovations may be protected by intellectual property for example).

You don’t necessary need fancy technology to put together an institutional repository – it can be something as simple as a spreadsheet or a blog – any tool or mechanism you can use to capture and organise knowledge. If you’re thinking about starting an institutional repository, see the Knowledge for Healthcare Institutional Repository Toolkit for ideas, tips & hints and case studies.

Organising and mobilising knowledge is what we information professionals do best and institutional repositories are a great opportunity to develop and strengthen relationships with other departments in our organisations (we’re certainly working closer with R&D now!) and to demonstrate our skills and value, so go for it!

Cate Newell
Reader Services Librarian and RD&E Research Repository Manager
Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Foundation Trust

Institutional Repositories – keep it simple!

The reason for being involved in the creation of an Institutional Repository

Creating an Institutional Repository (IR) is about connecting people to people, building on the external reputation of your organisation and increasing access to health and care research funded by public money.

You can chose from bespoke software systems, content management systems, library management systems (LMS), or more straight-forward solutions, for example, Excel spreadsheets and Access databases.

Why I chose to use my LMS for an IR.

  • I wanted to keep it simple.
  • I didn’t want to make the IR a silo. I wanted to raise awareness of knowledge outputs to help put people in touch with one another, and raise awareness of library and knowledge services at the board and throughout the organisation.
  • I wanted to do it within my current budget.
  • Using my LMS means customers find staff papers when they are looking for books on a topic, this is an added bonus.
  • As long as the outputs can be found, for me, the system is not the most important thing. I felt it was better to do it, rather than wait for a gold standard system which may not be affordable.
  • I wasn’t convinced a new system would offer us enough added value, or could offer much more than my LMS could offer. Our system is web-based.
  • To buy a bespoke system would not just cost an initial outlay, but ongoing maintenance costs and potentially storage costs too.
  • Using our LMS increases the scope of the system and provides additional justification for its maintenance.
  • My longer term plan is to link to open access articles where they are available. If I can’t link to full text access, I can still raise awareness of the research. The full text can be sourced though the library.
  • If the research is already available via a university repository or an organisation’s internet page, I plan to explore if I can link to it. However if the content is in PubMed Central, I will link to that, as I hope the links are less likely to break.
  • I don’t store the full-text, I would need additional storage space on our server and copyright can complicate this.
  • Cross linking is important to me, to make the content easy to find. Like many LMS I can create links to specific collections. I have a link which displays all staff papers via our Trust research department.

Hints and Tips to get going

  • The time it takes to set up an IR will depend on how research active or publication active your organisation is.
  • Try and pick a system that won’t become another legacy system or a silo, use one your Trust can easily support.
  • Start with items in the public domain and build on that if you can.
  • Start with staff papers as they are relatively easy to find. Begin by importing citations and use author affiliation searches.
  • Start with the current year; then build on this as far back as you need/want.
  • Seek work experience, college/university work placements and pre-employment placement opportunities, these can help you get an IR up and running and to help maintain it.
  • Consider sharing staff from research departments. It is a shared priority, so see if they can enter some of the information into your system, or can you raise awareness or support them with theirs?
  • If you are storing or linking to internal documents choose a method that will keep them internal (e.g. password protected or on an internal system). Often LMS have hidden categories which can be seen with a password.
  • If you are going to use a straight-forward solution like Excel, then ensure you get advice from library colleagues to make sure you get the best out of it. Items can be categorised, filtered and pick lists created to provide consistency.
  • Speak to library colleagues who you know have an IR or ask the members of the IR task and finish group to buddy you up with a colleague who can help.

Vicky Bramwell

Library Service Manager

Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

(Members of the IR task and finish group are  Lesley Allen, Vicky Bramwell, Dominic Gilroy, Hugh Hanchard, Jackie McGuire, Sue Robertson and Caroline Storer)