The UOC produces a Catalan version of the COAR network's good practices guide for repositories

Subject:  Office of the Deputy General Manager (Research and Innovation). Open Science | Multidisciplinary
A person writing in his notebook in front of a computer

Easy access, reuse and preservation of the contents are some of the assessment criteria proposed by COAR for repositories

The UOC's O2 Repository applies the majority of the recommended good practices

COAR's purpose is to preserve the open access contents of repositories and make them more visible and accessible to more people

Open access repositories are digital archives used by universities, research groups and other institutions to share the knowledge they generate in the form of scientific articles, final projects and research data with everyone and preserve it over time. The Confederation of Open Access Repositories (COAR) has published its "Community Framework for Good Practices in Repositories", a list of guidelines that these institutions can use to self-assess their repositories with a view to identifying areas where improvements can be made. The latest version of this roadmap is available in English, and the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) has produced a Catalan version of it.

"The translation of contents into different languages helps break the hegemony of the English language in scientific communications and fosters what some researchers have termed bibliodiversity", said Sebastiano Giorgi Scalari, the UOC's representative in the COAR international network and a member of the university's Open Science team.

A checklist for repositories

The community framework for good practices presents a series of characteristics that COAR considers all good repositories should include. They have been classified into eight major groups, including discoverability, access, the reuse of contents, and ensuring the integrity and authenticity of the files and preserving them over time.

Integrity and authenticity
Quality assurance
Sustainability and governance

To implement them, the confederation proposes around 50 specific actions that are feasible and can be applied to repositories of all kinds (data, institutional, etc.) the world over. The document classifies these criteria according to whether their priority is deemed essential or desired.

The framework is the result of the consensus achieved by COAR's working group on repository assessment and significant contributions made by its community of 157 members and partners.

The UOC's O2 Repository: passing with flying colours

The university's institutional repository has also been put to the test. It currently meets more than 70% of the COAR framework's essential and desired criteria. For example, each item deposited in it has its own permanent, unalterable URL. 

Moreover, the UOC has established a digital preservation policy that defines the process to ensure long-term access to the university's knowledge. It also covers aspects such as the roles and responsibilities of the various work teams and the scope of application.  

About COAR

COAR is an international association with 157 members and partners from around the world representing libraries, universities, research institutions, government funders and others. COAR brings together individual repositories and repository networks in order to build capacity, align policies and practices, and act as a global voice for the repository community. The UOC has been a member since 2018.