New Report on the State of European Repositories

Posted: 05-12-2023 Topics: Repositories COAR Open Aire SPARC

In January 2023, LIBER, SPARC EuropeCOAR, and OpenAIRE launched a joint strategy aimed at strengthening the European repository network. The strategy stated our commitment to work together – along with other relevant organisations – to develop and execute an action plan to reinforce and enhance repositories in Europe. Open Science is ushering in a new paradigm for research; one in which all researchers have unprecedented access to the full corpus of research for analysis, text and data mining, and other new research methods. A prerequisite for achieving this vision is a strong and well-functioning network of repositories that provides human and machine access to the wide range of valuable research outputs. 

In the spring of 2023, as part of the joint strategy, we conducted a survey of the European repository landscape. The survey found that collectively, European repositories acquire, preserve and provide open access to tens or possibly hundreds of millions of valuable research outputs and represent critical, not-for-profit infrastructure in the European Open Science landscape. They are well-placed to support the expansion of open science practices and research assessment reform across Europe.

However, in order to ensure the European repository network is fit for purpose and able to support the evolving needs of the research community, the survey also identified three areas in particular that could be strengthened: maintaining up-to-date, highly functioning software platforms; applying consistent and comprehensive good practices in terms of metadata, preservation, and usage statistics; and gaining appropriate visibility in the scholarly ecosystem. 

The survey provides essential data that will help shape a joint strategy to enhance and strengthen European repositories that will be developed over the next several months.

The full report is available here.