Launching a repository

It is important that the institutional repository is used and populated by academics. For this to succeed the institution should carry out an advocacy campaign to raise awareness and usage. Institutional staff have a key role to play in encouraging Open Access and self-archiving practices across their institution.

In order to ensure that the message of Open Access and the benefits of establishing and managing institutional repositories is spread as effectively as possible, institutional staff need to create a communication plan for the advocacy campaign, which involves carrying out an information and stakeholder analysis, identifying:

  • Key stakeholder groups, for example academics, senior managers
  • Their information needs, i.e., what they need to know
  • How to meet these information needs most effectively, i.e., what advocacy strategies and materials should be used

Posters are a very useful medium to attract attention at events promoting a new repository. Posters should be informative and attractive, persuading academics and senior institutional staff that self archiving where possible will yield significant benefits. For ideas on posters see the selection on the SHERPA Partners' resources page.

Leaflets describing and promoting the new repository are also a very useful promotional tool. There are various designs that many institutions and examples of these can be found at Advocacy Methods and Materials page of the Partnering on Copyright report.

Organising workshops and training sessions is directly related to launching a new repository as it deals with introducing the new repository and spreading the word to other users. For an archive of past events facilitated by the RSP which may assist you in thinking about what your events could contain see the past events section