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Cusat comes up with an online repository

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Staff Reporter

People can access research publications and theses through it

KOCHI: In a unique initiative, Cochin University of Science and Technology (Cusat) has come up with an institutional repository where its research publications and Ph.D. theses will be available online for the public.

Supported by the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research, the repository is the first of its kind offered by any university in the State, claimed the university authorities.

An institutional repository is an online locus for collecting, preserving and disseminating the intellectual output of an institution, particularly a research institution, in digital form.

Explaining the objectives of the initiative, C. Beena, Assistant Librarian, Cusat, said that the facility would provide pre-prints and post-prints of research journal articles and digital versions of theses and dissertations.

Administrative documents and course notes could also be included in the repository, she said.

Ms. Beena said that institutions like the Indian Institute of Management- Kozhikode (IIMK), Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre and the Naval Physical and Oceanographic Laboratory (NPOL) have their own institutional repositories.

For instance, IIMK’s institutional repository, a scholarly archiving facility for the IIMK community, uses the BSD DSpace software.

Jointly developed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Libraries and Hewlett-Packard (HP) Labs, this service enables the institute community to archive their pre-prints, post-prints and other scholarly publications.

Keeping in tune with the objectives of open access movement, the facility helps the institute researchers in self-archiving and long-term preservation of their scholarly publications, provides easy access to these publications world wide and improves the impact of their research.

Called dspace@iimk, the repository at IIIMK can be accessed by anybody. But the submission of documents to this archive is limited to the IIMK research community.

Institutional repositories are also partly linked to the notion of a digital library — collecting, housing, classifying, cataloguing, preserving and providing access to digital content analogous with the library’s conventional function of collecting, housing classifying, preserving and providing access to analog content.

The main objectives of having an institutional repository include creating global visibility for an institution’s scholarly research and to collect content in a single location.

It also provides open access to institutional research output by self-archiving it. Online repositories also help in storing and preserving other institutional digital assets, including unpublished theses or technical reports.

Cusat’s online repository will be inaugurated on Friday.

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