For immediate release
Berkeley Electronic Press Tools Power Innovative New Institutional Repository
The California Digital Library (CDL), in conjunction with The Berkeley Electronic Press, today announced a major new initiative to aggregate and disseminate scholarly materials. The eScholarship Repository will host a wealth of publications created under the auspices of University of California research units. Initially focusing on working papers in the social sciences and humanities, the eScholarship Repository will serve as an important destination for researchers across the globe.
Built under a co-development partnership with the Berkeley Electronic Press (bepress), the tools behind the eScholarship Repository improve the speed and efficiency of sharing the results of scholarly efforts. For participating scholars, departments, and research institutes, publishing working papers is greatly streamlined. The submission, processing, and dissemination of scholarship are managed through a simple web interface, the bepress EdiKit system.
In addition to simplifying the depositing of papers, the new technology allows readers, at no charge, to discover and view relevant research by topic, author, or sponsoring research department with the site's straightforward organization and search tools. The system also allows users to sign up for a service alerting them to new content, tailored to their unique interests.
Following focus groups and planning meetings in late 2001 with UC social science scholars and research staff, the repository opens with early-adopter social science research units at UC Berkeley and UCLA. The Olin Program in Law and Economics, Institute of Industrial Relations, Institute of Business and Economic Research, Institute of Transportation Studies, and others are moving existing working paper series to the repository as well as using it to publish new scholarship. The eScholarship Repository will also be the first stop for papers in the University of California International and Area Studies (UCIAS) peer-reviewed ePublications Program, an eScholarship initiative launched last year (http:// escholarship.cdlib.org/ias.html).
"What's not to like?" asked Martin Wachs, Director of the Institute of Transportation Studies and Professor of Civil Engineering and City and Regional Planning at UC Berkeley. "I welcome any technology that improves people's access to our research. By placing ITS researchers' papers in this new digital repository, we will be able to reach a larger audience."
The repository represents an important component of the CDL's eScholarship program, whose mission is to facilitate and support scholar-led innovations in scholarly communication. One clear advantage of CDL's sponsorship of the repository is its commitment to making the working papers available over time. Another is the promise of ongoing low- and no-cost access to scholarly materials at a time when few such endeavors are tenable.
"Of course, libraries have long been in the business of preserving materials and providing ongoing access to them, so it makes sense that UC's digital library would respond to these goals for digital scholarship as well," said Catherine Candee, Director of Scholarly Communication Initiatives for the CDL. "Scholars responded enthusiastically to our support of innovations in the early dissemination of their work, but the safekeeping and ongoing availability of that work, through software and hardware changes, is of paramount concern to them and us as well," she added. "There are few well-organized alternatives with non-profit backing and a commitment to low-cost aggregation of social science scholarship – we are happy and proud to lead the way."
CDL expects the collection to grow quickly in size and diversity, with the addition of content from other social science and humanities institutes and scholars. The eScholarship program is working with UC libraries and a 10-campus scholarly communication advisory body to schedule this phased expansion.
"I am thrilled that an institution as large and influential as the University of California is providing a viable option for social scientists and humanities scholars to share their work," said Marc Mayerson, Assistant Dean of Social Sciences at UCLA. "What better role could the CDL play than to help us help ourselves in creating faster, broader, permanent means of building upon each other's work, or to manage the output from the University's investment in scholars and scholarship?"
About The California Digital Library
The CDL, which partners with the 10 UC campuses in a continuing commitment to apply innovative technology to managing scholarly information, opened to the public in January 1999.
As a digital "co-library," complementing and partnering with the physical libraries of the UC system, the CDL uses technology to efficiently share materials held by UC, to provide greater and easier access to digital content, and to join with researchers in developing new tools and innovations for scholarly communication.
Founded by professors in 1999, bepress exists to serve academia. We deliver scholarly communications and publishing services for academic institutions, empowering their communities to showcase and share their works for maximum impact. Through our services bepress seeks to link communities of scholars, listen to their needs, and provide solutions to support emerging academic missions and goals.
Bepress is the provider of Digital Commons, the leading hosted institutional repository software platform. Digital Commons is a suite of tools and services that enables institutions to manage, display, and publish scholarship to the web in a beautiful, highly visible showcase. Digital Commons offers the features of a traditional IR as well as professional-grade publishing software, management tools, and individual faculty and researcher pages to promote and disseminate scholarship and serve academia.
With Digital Commons, universities can collect, preserve, and make visible all of their intellectual output, including pre-prints, working papers, journal articles, dissertations, master's theses, conference proceedings, presentations, creative works, and a wide variety of other content types.