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Jan 10, 2024

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Towards the road for trusted repositories: New report on the state of repositories in Europe

Jan 10, 2024

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 2023, OpenAIRE, LIBER, SPARC Europe, and COAR launched a joint strategy aimed at strengthening the European repository network and conducted a survey of the European repository landscape. The survey received 394 responses from repositories in 34 countries, and 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.

Having just celebrated the 20 years of the University of Minho repository, and witnessing the success of Portugal's national repository network RCAAP, I am more convinced than ever that building trusted repositories is an absolute necessity for a truly Open Scholarly Communication ecosystem. They are the backbone and the go to place for researchers to share their results, for research executives and funders to monitor results and plan ahead, for AI experts to freely access content and build value added services. A win-win for everyone! As a result, it is critical that we strengthen our support for them, build services around them, and make them central to the R&I ecosystem.
Eloy Rodrigues, University of Minho, OpenAIRE Executive Board

The full report is available here: 10.5281/zenodo.10255559