About RSP

RSP Logo


The Repositories Support Project (RSP) was a 7 year JISC-funded initiative contributing to building repository capacity, knowledge and skills within UK higher education institutions. Through providing guidance and advice, the RSP benefitted the whole of the UK sector and resulted in the wider take-up and development of institutional repositories in HEIs.

The Repositories Support Project (RSP) ran from November 2006 – 31 July 2013. During that time the RSP ran 50 face-to-face events; 7 residential schools and 43 one-day events. Over 1,506 delegates attended events, from 257 different organizations. The RSP hosted 16 webinars for 1,017 delegates, 270 of which were international. A large proportion of the international delegates were from the USA, Ireland, Lithuania, Spain, Portugal and Mexico. Delegates also attended online webinars from Argentina, South Africa, Canada, Nigeria, Italy, Germany and other locations. The RSP conducted 94 consultancy visits.

The aim of the project was to progress the vision of a deployed network of interoperable repositories for academic papers, learning materials and research data across the UK. Whilst fulfilling the business requirements of HEIs to manage their assets, showcase research outputs, and share learning materials, such a network of populated repositories was a major step forward in the provision of open access materials.

Although some institutions were in the advanced stages of establishing well managed repositories the deployment of repositories was still patchy and many institutions did not have the expertise, resources or confidence to address the repository agenda without external encouragement and support. Consequently, whilst there were still many interesting areas for theoretical research, the principal aim of the RSP was to increase the pace of institutional adoption by providing practical assistance and advice based on available solutions, with an emphasis on operational issues to do with the installation, implementation and deployment of institutional repositories.

The RSP had an active outreach programme of advice and information. This targeted institutions that were yet to take the first step, as well as giving more advanced institutions guidance on embedding existing repositories within institutional strategies. In both instances the intention was to provide clear decision paths, succinct guidance notes and hands-on support. In developing its services and support the project drew not only on the wide-ranging expertise resident in its carefully selected combination of consortium partners but also upon the substantial amount of additional expertise, research and infrastructure already available within the sector.


The RSP consulted with the community at large and with JISC programme managers in order to ensure institutions could be effectively supported whatever their repository type or stage of maturity. A databank of expertise, know-how and best practice was built up. It was delivered with different views for target audiences and repository types, tailored to specific needs and available in multiple formats. Support materials concentrated on four broad themes:

  • Technical: software selection and installation, technologies, metadata, interoperability
  • Organisational: staffing, business requirements and incentives, copyright clearance and digital rights management
  • Repository management: policies, workflows, archiving and preservation
  • Advocacy: advocating to different stakeholders and advising on advocacy within institutions

Services and support from the RSP [PDF, 144KB]


The RSP is funded by JISC