Case Study: Re-Engineering an Institutio…

Case Study: Re-Engineering an Institutional Repository to Engage Users :

“When institutional repositories were introduced, many libraries embraced them as a means to support and further the cause of open access and the dissemination of scholarly communication. As has been widely reported, however, faculty did not embrace the concept, and repositories generally have not filled up as envisioned. We pose the question: is it possible to design an institutional repository that faculty and graduate students find useful and attractive enough to change their ingrained habits and incorporate into their work routines? The University of Rochester’s River Campus Libraries is engaged in finding out. Based on two major user research studies, the team at Rochester determined that a number of crucial features were needed to attract end user interest: the system must become part of the workflow during the research and writing phase, it must support collaboration with users outside the institution, it must provide quantifiable evidence of use, and it needs to allow the users to control and showcase their work. Based on their research, the River Campus Libraries developed a new open source institutional repository software system called IR+. With IR+, Rochester is testing the findings from their research, to see if a repository that goes beyond the collection of finished scholarly works and engages academics in the creation stages of their research will prove to be a more successful model.”