Re: Priorities: OA Content Provision vs. OA Content Preservation

From: Steve Hitchcock <>
Date: Fri, 22 Oct 2004 14:17:04 +0100

Heather Morrison is quite right to note that there is no inherent conflict
between efforts to provide self-archived content and parallel efforts to
preserve it.

I expect this to be illustrated when JISC announces the results of its
Circular 4/04: Call for Projects in Supporting Institutional Digital
Preservation and Asset Management
(, which is
likely to include one or more projects concerned with eprints-related

In the context of this thread, these projects will raise issues that will
need to be aired - but, I hope, not the charge that OA preservation
projects hinder progress in filling the OA archives. Those issues will have
to wait until the projects are announced.

Until then it ought to be noted that what matters most for institutional
archives is immediate OA content provision, and in parallel with the
ongoing content provision, the
preservation of that OA content. There are practical issues about the
coordination between the needs of eprints services and preservation
requirements to sort out: pace, timescales, chronology. There are also some
separate issues concerning selection criteria and the provision of a
network infrastructure for preservation service providers.

All of these can be productively worked out as long as it is clear that
immediate OA content can continue to be provided. The parallel long-term
preservation efforts are another incentive for providing that content.

Steve Hitchcock
IAM Group, School of Electronics and Computer Science
University of Southampton SO17 1BJ, UK
Tel: +44 (0)23 8059 3256 Fax: +44 (0)23 8059 2865

At 08:31 05/10/04 -0700, Heather Morrison wrote:
>To me, there is no inherent conflict between the need to address access
>and the need to address preservation. For example, I am completely in
>favor of moving immediately to open access - both OA publishing and
>developing and filling institutional repositories as quickly as
>possible - while other issues, such as preservation, are figured out,
>at the same time. Discussing other issues of importance in relation
>to scholarly communications does not mean that one is proposing any
>delay in moving to OA.
>For example, as universities develop their institutional repositories,
>most will likely develop policies for the IR at the same time. These
>policies may well be revised later, but the major policy development
>work is likely to occur at the outset. There are other questions to
>consider besides access, and preservation is one of these. The
>difference between discussing these in public and not discussing these
>in public is that the former course makes it easy for those doing this
>work to discover a range of potential views and approaches, while the
>latter forces each to proceed independently. For this reason, I would
>suggest that discussing other needs of scholarly communication, such as
>access, expedites the process of developing institutional repositories.
>Heather G. Morrison
>Project Coordinator
>BC Electronic Library Network
>Phone: 604-268-7001
>Fax: 604-291-3023
Received on Fri Oct 22 2004 - 14:17:04 BST

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