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open archives forum

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1st - Pisa  |   Programme-Presentations-Notes  |   Abstracts  |   Participants

1st Workshop: 13-14th May 2002 in Pisa

Creating a European Forum on Open Archives Activities

The "open archives" approach is gaining popularity in the scientific, cultural and learning communities. The technology adopted makes it possible to disseminate and exploit content that is currently not accessible to the wider public at a relatively low cost. If the full potential of this approach is fulfilled, it will have a significant impact on the building of new and more powerful service provision.

The Open Archives Forum (OA-Forum) is a EC 5th Framework Accompanying Measure for supporting the dissemination of information about European activities that adopt an open-archives based approach. OA-Forum aims at building a forum where European and national initiatives that use this approach can share their experiences and co-ordinate the development of software tools and infrastructures. Special attention is dedicated to those initiatives which are implementing or using the Open Archives Initiative Metadata Harvesting Protocol (http://www.openarchives.org) but the forum is also paying attention to other emerging solutions.

The First OA-Forum Workshop seeks to bring together researchers, technical implementers and project managers who are experimenting, or are willing to experiment, with the open archives approach. The goal of the Workshop is:

to set up the basis of a European forum for sharing experiences
and solutions and encouraging networking among projects.

The workshop will consist of both presentations given by invited speakers and small groups breakout sessions where the participants can discuss key issues, possibly raised during the workshop itself. Possible topics are:

  • Communities
    What communities can benefit from the open archive approach? Do incentives, technical and organizational challenges, etc. differ in different communities? Which communities are already implementing the Open Archive Initiative Metadata Harvesting Protocol or other solutions? What kinds of services are emerging?
  • Definition of the key vocabulary
    Can we agree on basic terminology? What are the main concepts that are used in the open archive everyday activity? Do these concepts differ for different communities? Are the definitions of these concepts clear? Can we jointly build a glossary.
  • Organisational Issues
    What lessons about organisational issues, both barriers to adoption and positive factors, can we learn from early adopters? Which are the business models adopted? Are there issues related to subject-based archives as opposed to institutional-based archives? Can organisations reach consensus on metadata formats?
  • Technical issues
    Which kind of software tools are needed to support the open archives approach? What tools are already being used? Who is developing them? In Europe? Elsewhere? Are they available to other implementers? Is there an appropriate "Open Source" environment for these tools?
  • Building services in an open archive environment
    What lessons have been learned by early-adopters of the open archives approach in the context of service provision? Can we extend openness to services? How can this be supported? Which kind of organizational and technical infrastructures are needed to facilitate this development?

The discussions and results of the Workshop will be summarised in a Workshop report that will be published on the OA-Forum Website.

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The Open Archives Forum (OAF) is an IST– Accompanying Measures project (IST- 2001-320015).
The partners of OAF are: University of Bath-UKOLN (United Kingdom), Istituto di Scienza e Tecnologie della Informazione-CNR (Italy) and Computer- and Media Service (Computing Center) of Humboldt University (Germany).

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