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Saturday, March 08, 2008

Why IRs are important for smaller institutions

Allan Scherlen, Institutional Repositories: A Good Idea for North Carolina, North Carolina Libraries, Fall/Winter 2007. Abstract:
Librarians at universities in North Carolina are beginning to consider whether to establish electronic repositories where faculty and students can deposit copies of their scholarship for preservation and world-wide access. This article addresses a number of questions and concerns that arise, especially for librarians at smaller institutions, as they consider implementing an institutional repository (IR) program. Does a given institution have enough scholarly content to warrant building an IR? What does an IR provide that is not already available from publishers and database providers? Why would anyone search an IR? Is an IR too costly for a small institution with a limited budget to set up and maintain? The author argues that while building an IR collection requires a significant commitment in staff resources, the outcome of making the collective scholarship of North Carolina open access through IRs will be immensely beneficial to scholars, hosting institutions, students, and citizens of North Carolina and beyond.