Providing open access to research outputs is now an important part of research management
at Australian universities. This relatively new focus arises from the Federal Government’s
policy that the results of publicly funded research should be publicly available. There is also a
quality imperative behind the development of open access to research outputs the Excellence
in Research for Australia (ERA) initiative will predominantly measure research performance
based on citation analysis, and the results are likely to inform future Federal resource direction
and distribution. The early access to full text made possible by digital repositories has the
potential to increase citation rates on quality research outputs and therefore improve a
university’s results in the ERA.
One of the critical questions in the implementation of open access repositories is how to align
them efficiently with existing systems recording similar or identical data, in particular the
Higher Education Research Data Collection (HERDC) items, and metadata in relation to other
items (creative works, for example).
In 2009 Australian Research Repositories Online to the World (ARROW) proposed four
systems models to meet the dual requirements and interaction of HERDC reporting and
repository metadata recording:
1. Institutional repository to research management system
2. Research management system to institutional repository
3. Shared input
Whilst each model has its advantages and disadvantages, the University of Tasmania has
implemented model 4 as the most efficient and integrated systems approach. The system has
provided solutions to the issues of workflow and workload, author validation, HERDC data
elements, ERA data elements, electronic document upload, Open Archives Initiative (OAI2)
access, and public access.
This poster demonstrates how the new system was implemented, emphasising the integration
of research outputs and repository access with other research management information, such
as grant applications, consultancies and contract research, sponsors, ethical clearance, HDR
supervision, and IP and commercialisation management. The benefits of the new system are
many and include: a single point of entry, workflow automation, automatic routing of email
requests for restricted items, generation of research portfolios, pseudo dark server interface
allowing access by System to Evaluate the Excellence of Research (SEER) to ERA items,
indexing by search engines and access by harvesters via the OAI2 interface increasing
research output exposure and maximising the potential for increasing citation rates.