Academic institutions internationally are creating
institutional repositories in order to make their research output
Many Universities have opted to input e-prints
and ETDs as the content initially. When writing a Business Case
for the creation of an ETD repository, it is important to consider
the associated needs of other content that may form part of
the wider collection.
It is hoped that institutions will take advantage of opportunities
that will become available in future to deposit ETDs in a national
digital repository. Smaller institutions may wish to deposit their
ETDs only in a national collection if the cost of creating an
institutional repository is prohibitive. In such cases the reasons
why it is unrealistic to setup the infrastructure for an institutional
repository, and the benefits of still being able to publicise
PhD research output, need to be demonstrated.
The Key issues to address in an ETD Business Case are
- Why ETDs are important and why ETDs need to be made available
in a digital repository?
- Why an institutional repository should be developed?
- Why the content should be provided to a national hub.
- What the institutional repository
- Will a collection of ETDs be established
separately from, or alongside, e-prints etc..?
- How will the repository be created?
(The JISC funded 'FAIR' projects favoured 'DSpace' and 'E-Prints'
as software which would suit ETD collections well.)
- Reference can be made to the existence
of the metadata core-set for ETDs
- Information about various relevant
technical and legal issues can be obtained from the RGU 'Electronic
Theses' web pages, the University of Glasgow 'Daedalus' web
pages and the University of Edinburgh 'Theses Alive!' web
- Consideration needs to be given to
where the content of the ETD repository will be stored - where
an in-house server will be located or whether the content
will be stored only in a national collection.
- Responsibility for the creation and
maintenance of the ETD collection has to be decided. Who will
train students and staff to create ETDs in an appropriate
form? Who will convert theses from Word documents into pdf
(students or library staff)? How much staff time will be needed
to support the ETD process?
- Capital costs may include the purchase
of a dedicated server and related equipment.
- DSpace and E-Prints software are
open source and therefore do not incur purchase costs. However,
staff time will be required to install the software and to
update it periodically.
- The major ongoing cost will be for
staff time. Staff will be involved in advocacy work (initially
to promote the concept of ETDs and later, if electronic submission
is not mandatory, to encourage students to provide the content
for the repository). Staff will also be required to provide
training for students and staff on an ongoing basis, to assign
metadata to theses, and to upload the content into the ETD