Jisc Monitor and User Engagement

As has been outlined and discussed in previous blog posts, the potential success for the Jisc Monitor pilot rests with receiving robust feedback and collaborative efforts from many interested parties.  To that end, we put together two workshops, focusing on the four use cases we are developing into prototypes, which we will then subsequently test over the coming months.  The first workshop back in July of 2014 covered areas of monitoring total publication activity for an institution as well as monitoring funder compliance.  The collaboration then moved on through a series of fortnightly webinars, hosted by Jisc Collections and run by David Kay, Ian Chowcat, Ian Ibbotson, Richard Jones, and Owen Stephens.

A second workshop was then run in September 2014 at the Jisc London offices with a focus on the next set of use cases: total spend and developing improved interoperability to deliver more efficient data exchange.  Additional webinars were also offered on the 1st and 15th of October, and then a third scheduled for the 5th of November, with a third workshop focusing on costing and APCs set for the 28th of October.  In all instances, the intent continues to be to gather and validate user requirements, and our attendance at the Repository Fringe in Edinburgh session captured additional requirements. A requirements catalogue will be updated with costing and standardisation information shortly.  In addition, the development team is working toward creating a web-based version of that catalogue.

The recordings from the 1st of October 2014 follow-on webinar and the one from the 15th of October 2014 (both for the second sprint) are now available. In all of these, we’ve been actively engaged with more than 36 different HEI and four external organisations, including some publishers, and hope to involve many of them when it comes to the testing of the prototypes and software that are being developed.  We also want to engage even more directly with institutions who are at the so-called “coal face” of the Open Access landscape, and as such, we are working with several of the Jisc-supported Pathfinder Projects, which are developing nine separate but inter-connected initiatives, advised by the Open Access Good Practice Group. The main thrust of all this work is to attain that collaborative edge in order to explore and extrapolate what it is that institutions and other key stakeholders require as part and parcel of complying the current and future HEFCE policies surrounding Open Access publication outputs and the post-2014 REFs.

As part of the considerations involved with the HEFCE policy and the post-2014 REF, we also supported a workshop in London entitled, “Practical Approaches to Implementation of HEFCE’s OA policy” and had representation from ARMA, RLUK and SCONUL addressing their work with and for the policy, as well as representatives from HEFCE and IOP publishing; in addition, representatives from the University of Edinburgh, University of Sheffield, and St Andrews University also presented at the event, highlighting their experiences with those policy requirements.  The OA Good Practice blog discusses the recommendations captured during the day.

We will also continue to meet with key stakeholders to ensure better coordination: Publications Router, Total Cost of Ownership (TCO), as well as external parties such as PLoS/ESAC, Imperial, and IoE.  A joint Publications Router and Jisc Monitor session was presented to the Scholarly Communications Advisory Group and a session on Jisc Monitor was presented to the Gold Open Access Infrastructure Group in September.

The current outputs include prototype software, the Project Initiation Document, an initial logical data model, a germinal requirements catalogue, a project website and blog, a community/stakeholder engagement plan, and the workshops with follow-on webinars.  In addition, a Jisc Monitor Newsletter is available highlighting all of this work in some detail.  The important aspect is the range and scope of meetings and activities that have taken place with projects, services, and publishers to ensure a shared understanding of what is required by institutions and researchers.

Regardless of these outputs, the underlying ethos of the pilot remains exploratory, and we remain committed to discovering what is and is not in scope for the remainder of the project, as well as identifying work which will be a real value to institutions, organisations, and publishers engaged with Open Access.

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