Additional Open Access Fields

I’ve just been drafting definitions and help text for the additional open access fields we think we need over and above RCUK and REF requirements.

Looking forward to letting Southampton colleagues and EPrints in on our test system next week.


Working Together

I’ve just been listening to the Jisc Monitor update on ‘Monitor Local’

Recording available here:

This is a prototype offering that Jisc are working on for managing open access costs and compliance.  It is not meant to replace existing systems but sits alongside commercial, open source, and local systems as another option.  So whilst some of us might use EPrints or PURE for all of this other organisations might choose to try out the ‘Monitor Local’ solution should it move to full service.

I have been encouraging working together and we have representation from the Jisc Monitor project on the CASRAI UK Open Access Working group.  I very much hope we can agree some standards for open access that can be utilised by all stakeholders and all system solutions.

Open Access and EPrints

A quick test of our next iteration of our test Open Access reporting (using the ‘RIOXX’ RCUK PlugIn for EPrints as a basis with additional fields added) and I am thinking:

  • Some additional types e.g. to indicate that a journal did not offer a green OA option – or any OA options.  We might explore if these could or should relate to REF exemptions but probably still want two distinct fields.
  • APC Fund field to identify who paid – We plan to add MRC SPHSU, THIRD PARTY, GOLD OTHER
  • Perhaps some fields could be switched off from mandatory initially or we need to agree a default value that indicates that correct value is not available at time of initial data entry – e.g. date of deposit of AAM, Licence REF, Acceptance date
  • Licence REF – can we map to publication date?  Can we add a drop down of the relevant licence types that will be accepted for this field?

We need to add clear help to all fields.

When we move to live we need to test the project/funder and person details come in correctly and map accordingly.

More on this soon.

Slow but Positive Progress

We are on our next iteration of our RIOXX testing.  RIOXX was a Jisc initiative that delivered a reporting profile for RCUK open access.  As part of this an EPrints extension has been provided to the community to support collection of the relevant information.   We have already made an amended version (see last blog post) and we think we also want a field for actual VAT  paid seperate to the cost field.  The VAT often comes in much later and we could be under forecasting year end budget if we do not notice that VAT has not been accounted for.

My colleagues here are amending our local test version of EPrints and I will then retest.

We will provide EPrints services and Southampton with access to our test set up and as further discussion takes place we hope to agree how a generic and comprehensive open access set up can be provided in EPrints for all to use.  We hope to involve other sites soon.

In a seperate but related activity I have reviewed our institutional requirements and the Jisc Monitor Open Access spreadsheet as recommended for Charities Open Access Fund reporting and added any missing elements to the CASRAI UK Open Access draft data profile.  This profile is being developed so that we can have a common list of open access terms and definitions and common specification for what we record in our systems.

The next CASRAI meeting is on 19th February and I hope then to update this blog with clarification of how the profile will be developed and how you can comment on any gaps or make suggestions.

If you are working on open access metadata and don’t see a representative of your stakeholder group below please do get in touch so we can link you in.

  • Nick Anderson, Symplectic
  • Chris Brown, Jisc
  • Sheridan Brown, Key Perspectives (for EPrints and RIOXX)
  • Geraldine Clement-Stoneham, MRC
  • Catherine Grout, Jisc
  • Ben Johnson, HEFCE (for REF)
  • Stuart Lawson, Jisc
  • George MacGregor, University of Strathclyde (For research organisations and PURE community)
  • Cecy Marden, Wellcome Trust (WT)
  • Valerie McCutcheon, University of Glasgow (For research organisations and EPrints community)
  • Gregor McDonagh, NERC
  • Balviar Notay, Jisc
  • Ben Ryan, EPSRC
  • Owen Stephens, Owen Stephens Consulting (for Jisc Monitor)
  • Thomas Vestdam, Elsevier Inc (For PURE)
  • Paul Walk, EDINA (for RIOXX)
  • David Baker, CASRAI
  • Sheri Belisle, CASRAI


Open Access in EPrints

We have done some basic testing of the software provided for EPrints via the RIOXX initiative.

It looks like we could make a few small changes to cover more comprehensively what we need  for open access in the short-medium term – and get rid of our spreadsheets which duplicate a lot of info already on EPrints.

I am sure it is not that simple….  Over the next few weeks we will proceed with some caution and test a local version.

From Glasgow point of view I think we need to:

1)      Add fund that APC is paid from – short drop down list as required for COAF reporting

2)      Add date APC payment made*

3)      Add value of APC payment*

4)      Add Licence type*

5)      Add article reference

6)      Add Award referenced*

7)      Add Dataset referenced*

8)      Add Type (green/gold/no OA option etc)*

9)      Add Estimated cost*

10)   Add Transaction number*

11)   Add Date of first deposit of compliant AM

*Most of this already in our local EPrints version so may be more integrating it with the report functions or  modifying the field format.

We are working with our colleagues in Southampton to identify key changes required and test software that arises as a result.

We will also revisit our big spreadsheet of open access metadata in case there is something pressing we need that will then not be incorporated in this version on our test server.  This may be an iterative process.

We will also look at linking the funder and project info to our existing funder/project set up that we have in EPrints.

Once more comprehensive data is in EPrints we might be able to modify the reporting longer term to spit out a) what COAF want in similar spreadsheet format b) what RCUK want for reporting c) simple compliance checks and internal reporting

This won’t be a total solution but may be a step towards efficiency and compliance.

National Information Standards Organization

NISO Guidelines for access and licencing of e-content now available.  This will be taken into account in RIOXX/CASRAI open access work.

How can we make Open Access Work?

Here is a link to a summary of a meeting that I participated in.    The focus is around working with publishers to have a more efficient process and information flow for open access.

Jisc and Pathfinder project initaitives continue to work with publishers to explore ways to reduce inefficiencies in the processes.

Workshop: Open Access and the REF, Issues and Potential Solutions (including presentations)

The second E2E workshop, Open Access and the REF took place in London on Monday 12th January. The workshop focused on metadata issues, particularly with a view to preparing for the next REF.
Ben Johnson from HEFCE discussed the next REF Open Access requirements and other speakers including David Baker at CASRAI, and Sarah Fahmy and Steve Byford from Jisc talked about various initiatives available to support this, for example Publications Router. Here’s a more detailed list of Jisc Services and Projects.
There was an excellent turnout and some lively discussions about metadata requirements and institutional workflows and processes, which built on the work we did at our September workshop.

Presentations were:

Jisc OA offer and support – PowerPoint

End-to-End project update – PowerPoint

HEFCE Open Access  – PowerPoint


Jisc initiatives to support OA – PowerPoint

Jisc Publications Router – PowerPoint


Feedback and a report of the event will appear on the blog shortly.

EPrints UK User Group Meeting

A large proportion of the morning  presentations and  afternoon discusson groups at yesterday’s EPrints UK user group was around ensuring our systems could deliver open access requirements.

Extract from Agenda

10:45 – Valerie McCutcheon (Glasgow) – Open Access Update

11:05 – David Baker (CASRAI) – CASRAI

11:25 – Sheridan Brown (Key Perspectives) & Timothy Miles-Board (ULCC) – RIOXX

11:45 – UEL/ULCC-ROAR/data.uel

  • data.uel development
  • CoinDOI
  • Repository Links*
  • Look & Feel

*This was functionality to efficiently create links between publications and datasets in our systems.

There was renewed optimism for working together to avoid unnecessary duplication of effort in implementing longer term solutions.

We have our big metadata spreadsheet but pragmatically we need to get on and deliver a more basic EPrints specification to the EPrints team as soon as possible to remove the need to use spreadsheets locally as these are often duplicating other bits of information already in our systems (in our case EPrints repository).

We need to get on and deliver a comprehensive dictionary and generic technical specification via the CASRAI UK Open Access Working group and including stakeholders from REF, RCUK and Jisc initiatives such as RIOXX.  There is a meeting Friday 16th January at which a number of us will discuss how we pull these strands together into one comprehensive specification.

There are some bits of metadata we will need clarification on in order to implement them usefully.

It can be difficult to match financial transactions with publications – there can be a many-to-many relationship.

There are lots of other issues – but we are persistent!

You can get a flavour of the event by searching #eprintsug on twitter.




Updating OA procedures

We’re all agreed that Open Access compliance is getting increasingly more complex and time-consuming. At Southampton, our Open Access requests have doubled compared to this time last year, policies have changed and more funders are bringing out Open Access policies, in particular HEFCE’s next REF Open Access requirements.

In light of this, the Open Access team at Southampton had an Away Day to look at our policies and procedures to ensure they were up-to-date and to attempt to streamline them. We took as a framework for this the workflows we used at the E2E workshop in September.

We then divided this into key themes:

  • Information

How do we receive it? Requests from academics, but also alerts from publishers

  • How do we store it?

(e.g. alerts for our prepayment accounts, emails from academics)
Which information do we need to keep? This ties in with the next E2E workshop in January, focusing on REF metadata requirements, continuing the work done at the September workshop.

  • Processing requests
  • Communication

Internal – communicating updates to policies and procedures
Contacting academics – the creation of more sample replies will save us a lot of time and provide greater consistency

  • Finance

Complexity around split payments
Processing page charges and publishing charges besides APCs

  • Pre-payment accounts
  • Compliance checking

The main requirements that came out of our discussions were the need for clear procedures, consistent sample replies and a robust system to store requests and replies.

Given the number of different Open Access requirements (institutional, funders’, REF) and different publishers’ payment systems, it is difficult to produce one clear procedure, but our next step is to write an overarching procedure which links out to individual funders’ and publishers’ requirements.