DRIVER: Networking European Scientific Repositories

From: Wolfram Horstmann <wolfram.horstmann_at_GMAIL.COM>
Date: Mon, 11 Sep 2006 10:16:34 +0200

DRIVER: Networking European Scientific Repositories

An international partnership has started work on a project to build a
large-scale public infrastructure for research information across Europe.

The "Digital Repository Infrastructure Vision for European Research"
(DRIVER) project responds to the vision that any form of scientific-content
resource, including scientific/technical reports, research articles,
experimental or observational data, rich media and other digital objects
should be freely accessible through simple Internet-based infrastructures.
Like GEANT2, the successful European network for computing resources, data
storage and transport, the new DRIVER repository infrastructure will enable
researchers to plug into the new knowledge base and use scientific content
in a standardised, open way. The project is funded by the European
Commission under the auspices of the "Research Infrastructure" unit.

Open Access to research information is vital for researchers and helps the
public appreciation and understanding of science. DRIVER will be helping
countries to create networks of openly-accessible repositories for research

The project is a joint collaboration between ten international partners with
the intention to create a knowledge base of European research. DRIVER will
put a test-bed in place across Europe to assist the development of a
knowledge infrastructure for the European Research Area. The project will
develop over the next 18 months, building upon existing institutional
repositories and networks, from countries including the Netherlands,
Germany, France, Belgium and the UK. The aim is for one large-scale virtual
content resource to be created to access and integrate individual
repositories. DRIVER will also prepare for the future expansion and upgrade
of the Digital Repository infrastructure across Europe and will ensure the
widest possible user involvement.

Several user services, including search, data collection, profiling and
recommendation, will be implemented in the test-bed. DRIVER will demonstrate
the potential of a future pan-European Digital Repository service to
researchers, research-funding agencies and institutions. Availability of
such a basic scientific content infrastructure should encourage academic
and/or non-academic service providers to build high-valued and innovative
services on top of it.

Early in the project, the current state of repositories in Europe will be
reported followed by professional guides on topics like technical standards,
data curation and others.

Interested partners and potential user groups will be contacted and
workshops will be run to establish communication and to create an active
environment for repository development in each European country. The
workshops will also act as open forums for discussion and feedback to assist
the development of the infrastructure and will facilitate the set-up and
international networking of institutional repositories for the envisioned
European DR infrastructure.

More information is available from:
The Project website:, the individual project
partners from participating countries or the project coordinators: Prof.
Mike Hatzopolous (administrative), and Dr. Norbert Lossau

The DRIVER Consortium:

- University of Athens, Greece
- Bielefeld University, Germany
- Consiglio Nazionale Delle Ricerche, Italy
- STICHTING SURF, Netherlands
- University of Nottingham, United Kingdom
- Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique DIS, France
- University of Bath, United Kingdom
- Uniwesytet Warszawski, Poland
- Universiteit Gent, Belgium
- Goettingen University, Germany

Wolfram Horstmann (Dr.)
DRIVER Scientific-Technical Manager
SUB Goettingen, Germany

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Received on Mon Sep 11 2006 - 11:57:47 BST

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