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Saturday, April 19, 2008

Capturing output with an IR at a business school in India

Gayatri Doctor, Capturing intellectual capital with an institutional repository at a business school in India, Library Hi Tech, January 2008. Only this abstract is free online, at least so far:
Purpose Digital repositories are emerging technologies for knowledge sharing and management in academic institutions. Digital repositories collect, store, preserve, index and share the intellectual capital of faculty and research staff, namely their scholarly publications and teaching material. In a developing country like India, capturing this intellectual capital is becoming important and unavoidable for business schools. Creation of a digital archive for scholarly and teaching material is a growing requirement and is feasible assuming faculties use digital resources for their creation and are ready to share them. The paper aims to discuss a survey conducted and a pilot implementation of an institutional repository at the Icfai Business School (Business School Institute of Chartered Financial Analysts of India), Ahmedabad, India.

Design/methodology/approach A survey was conducted at the Icfai Business School, with the questionnaire being used as a tool to collect data, to determine the usage of digital resources by faculty and research staff in scholarly activities and teaching; understand the need and use of an institutional repository by the faculty. The pilot implementation of the institutional repository at Icfai Business School, Ahmedabad is also described.

Findings The study indicates that faculty in business schools from different academic areas and teaching experience do use digital resources for scholarly publications and teaching material, they do indicate a knowledge sharing culture and tend to show a positive attitude towards the need and use of a Digital institutional repository. Implementing the pilot institutional repository using Open Source DSpace software was an experience and provided visibility to the institutional intellectual capital.

Research limitations/implications Infrastructure, funding and manpower were the initial limitations. Once the institutional repository was installed, management of the repository was necessary. Planning of communities and collections, system maintenance like backups, populating the repository with the seed collection, creating awareness for initiating faculty self-archiving for the growth of the repository were some of the challenges faced. Staff were to be trained to ensure that documents were properly uploaded and metadata submitted into the repository.

Practical implications The pilot institutional repository aims to collect, preserve, share the intellectual capital and enhance institutional visibility. The intellectual output of faculty and research staff is available at one centralized location for search. Information retrieval from this repository on the basis of communities, collections, keywords, author, and titles is possible. As the repository is OAI enabled, visibility to the work of the faculty and the institution is enhanced.

Originality/value Implementing the pilot institutional repository at Icfai Business School, Ahmedabad has created a central facility for systematic archiving of the intellectual output of faculty and research staff. The institutional repository is of utility and value to both the faculty and the institute as it gives visibility to the work done. It is one of the few business schools in India who have implemented an open access institutional digital repository to capture the intellectual capital and share knowledge.