DEVELOPMENT OF A DIGITAL REPOSITORY
The present paper outlines a 12-month project at the Technical University-Sofia (TUS) to evaluate, test and recommend digital repository software and systems to support TUS' collection and preservation of a wide variety of digital objects.
In accordance with the MIT Libraries definition an institutional repository is a database with a set of services to capture, store, index, preserve and redistribute a university’s scholarly research in digital formats.
Nowadays the proper supervision of organizational digital resources is very important and many institutions are realizing a business advantage by managing successfully their business data. Resources are built of different kind of documents ranging from images, video or audio clips, animations, presentations, online courses, web pages, to name a few. Organizations vary in types and sizes but all of them exhibit an intensive use of digital resources because these resources are stored, distributed, shared and reused without difficulty. Certainly some barriers like technical incompatibility or missing files are to be overcome to achieve an effective use. However digital resources are increasingly being recognized as a very important organizational asset on a par with finance and human resources. So, building repositories to manage the digital content is a very important activity that brings value in the inventive deliverables of the overall organization. Each time a digital resource remains undiscovered or simply not used the organization waste time or staff efforts, misses opportunities or looses possibilities to gain a competitive advantage. Digital repositories have great potential for value added services and offer a range of benefits to researchers, teachers, students, institutions and the global research community. Open access repositories offer additional advantages by taking the results of research that has already been paid for and making it freely available on-line. This process can have significant advantages for individual authors, for researchers, for institutions and for the process of research generally by allowing improved management of intellectual outputs and freeing up the process of dissemination.
This article outlines the methodology used to analyze the landscape of repository software and select the most appropriate one. The three types of options have been analyzed:
• Open Source Software (for example, CDSware, DSpace, EPrints, Fedora, Greenstone)
• Commercial Software
• Software Service Model.
The paper is organised as follows: the first section introduces some of the key concepts of digital object repositories. Different classifications of repositories are briefly presented. Section 2 presents the digital repositories building methodology as well as an overview of the most commonly used open source software platforms for digital repositories, recommended by OpenDOAR - The Directory of Open Access Repositories. Section 3 discusses the importance of metadata and the variety of schemes/standards. Examples of widely applied schemas and their peculiarities are briefly reported. The conclusion presents the underlying project and determines some research, development and implementation tasks.