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Digital Library Repository Service Planning and Development

Leslie Johnston, Margret Branschofsky, Michael R. Leach,

Presented at ASIST 2004 Annual Meeting; "Managing and Enhancing Information: Cultures and Conflicts" (ASIST AM 04), Providence, Rhode Island, November 13 - 18, 2004


At its most basic, a repository is a digital resource management and delivery system. In practical implementation, a repository may contain diverse content characterized by heterogeneity of format and in the level of detail and format of descriptive metadata, be based upon wildly varying architectures, provide multiple levels of resource preservation, support a wide-ranging scope of discovery and delivery services in support of an institution's mission, and potentially provide the tools that allow effective use of its contents. The development of digital asset management tools, content workflows, and discovery interface with authentication and access controls is an expensive and time-consuming process that requires detailed planning and effective project management. Furthermore, as the distributed and local digital repository environment coalesces and its requirements become clearer, institutions will also undergo organizational change in significant ways to take on these management and delivery functions. The panelists, all of whom have experience in the implementation of a repository system, will present issues in establishing and building varying types of repository services within a research library setting.

The following issues will be discussed:

The planning process, including the gathering of user requirements, definition of the scope of the service, policy planning, management, and staffing;

implementation, including the creation of functional and content specifications, identifying appropriate standards and technologies, the design and development process, and usability testing;

building content, including local content production and the solicitation of content from varying constituencies; and

the socio-cultural impact on a library organization.

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