This month sees the UK’s Research Councils’ (RCUK) revised policy on open access (OA) come into force for publicly-funded research to be disseminated through OA routes. A new metadata application profile called RIOXX has been developed by Jisc and UKOLN to ensure that university Institutional Repositories can start to comply with this policy.
Currently key information about research outputs are not systematically recorded and funders and universities face a challenge in tracking research across systems. The first release of RIOXX and the associated guidance focuses on applying consistency to the metadata fields used to record research funder and project/grant identifiers. This will allow research outputs to be consistently tracked between systems thus saving time and effort for activates such as research reporting, compliance checking and gathering business intelligence.
Neil Jacobs, Jisc’s digital infrastructure programme director says: “The UK research community punches well above its weight in terms of the quality and quantity of research outputs. However, these are not systematically recorded and attributed to research grants, so it can be hard to demonstrate that impact. Researchers, universities and funders have a common interest in ensuring that the outputs from UK research are visible and correctly attributed to units of funding.”
RIOXX also takes into account the need for interoperability between repositories, current research information systems (CRISs) and the Outcome Collection Systems (ROS), and Researchfish operated by research funders. It is has taken into consideration other metadata schemas such as ETHoS and OpenAIRE. Future releases of the profile and guidelines will also include the agreed language to track OA publications, and support compliance monitoring with the Research Councils’ policy on OA.
Neil adds: “It is important for UK universities to start to plan to engage and implement the RIOXX metadata application profile as soon as possible as it will support greater automation of collection of information on publications and other research outcomes. Associated software enhancements will also be available to support easy implementation.”
Dr Mari Williams, chair of the RCUK Research Outcomes Project comments: “The RIOXX guidelines offer clear and practical guidance to organisations wanting to attribute research outcome information to specific funders and research grants in their repositories. We look forward to agreed Open Access vocabularies being included in the RIOXX Profile within the near future.”