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Institutional repository makes University scholarship accessible

This May, Marquette University’s institutional repository - e-Publications@Marquette - reached a milestone of one million downloads, half occurring within the past year.  The open access digital repository provides persistent URLs to the scholarly work of over 400 Marquette faculty, students and staff, making their work visible on a global scale.

To date, there are over 8,600 papers in the repository. This figure includes published articles, conference proceedings, books, data sets, measurement instruments, theses and dissertations, and special digital projects.

Authors who choose to submit their work to e-Publications@Marquette receive a high level of discoverability due to indexing of their work by Google, Google Scholar, and other search engines, increasing the opportunity for reuse and citations. Public users of the repository are able to subscribe to RSS feeds of desired author collections and share particular works of interest with colleagues through linked social media outlets or e-mail.  Authors are able to track how their work is being used through monthly user reports that are sent automatically to their desired e-mail by the repository’s software, Digital Commons. Author reports are an alternative way for faculty and students to measure the impact of their research and have proven useful in tenure and promotion decisions, particularly when Journal Citation Reports or h-index numbers do not provide a complete measure of impact.  Institutional repository researchers Stacy Konkiel and Dave Scherer also point out that alternative metrics, the measurement of social sharing of scholarly work, "can help authors better understand the readership of their open access content,” providing context to usage statistics.

Support for submitting work to e-Publications@Marquette is provided by Digital Programs Librarian Rose Fortier.  Fortier and her staff use bibliographic data submitted by authors to locate publications and publisher policies for reuse.  Bibliographic data can be sent directly to Fortier by authors in the form of a CV, e-mailed citations, or through the Faculty Activities Database established in 2012 by Marquette’s Office of Institutional Research and Analysis.

While the digital repository was created with the vision of providing access to the scholarly publications of the University, Fortier invites faculty to submit other digital project ideas of interest.

More information can be found at e-Publications@Marquette.edu or by contacting Rose Fortier, coordinator of Digital Programs.