UK Web Focus (Brian Kelly)

Innovation and best practices for the Web

Preservation of UKOLN’s Web Resources and Papers

Posted by Brian Kelly on 29 Jul 2013

My main work activity this year has been managing the preservation of UKOLN’s Web resources, prior to the cessation of Jisc’s core funding on 31 July and the departure of most of UKOLN staff.

UKOLN Web site in UK Web ArchiveThis work involved:

  • Identifying UKOLN’s Web assets and the owner.
  • Preparing the content so that it was suitable for preservation.
  • Submitting details of the Web resources to the UK Web Archive team.
  • Liaison with the  UK Web Archive team to ensure that the resources had been successfully archived.

The preparation work, which was quite time-consuming to complete, involved switching off functions and technologies which were not suitable for archival (e.g. backend CGI scripts and features which were dependent on specific CMS technologies.

In addition the content of the main entry points for Web sites (and micro sites)  was updated in order to ensure that the page provided information on the purpose of the site; the funders; the UKOLN staff involved; the start and end dates for the work and, where possible, links to the key outputs of the work.

The UK Web Archive team have confirmed that they have successfully harvested the resources  we submitted some time ago. In addition Web sites which were still being updated, such as the UKOLN Web site itself and the IWMW sites, were submitted for archiving more recently.

In addition to this work significant papers and reports have been deposited in Opus, the University of Bath institutional repository. During the initial preparatory work we found that entry points for individuals were not available after they had left the institution, although their items would continue to be hosted in the repository. Since the individual’s name could be an important way of finding such content the repository team agreed that people’s entry point would continue to be available after they left the institution (although this would not be applied retrospectively to UKOLN staff who have left the institution prior to the change in the policy).

In order to make it easier to find items written by UKOLN staff the following table provides links to their list of items and accompanying usage statistics.

Name No. of items Usage statistics URL
Top 20 items Total nos.
of downloads
Alex Ball 69 [View] [View]
Talat Chaudhri   2 [View] [View]
Michael Day 68 [View] [View]
Monica Duke


[View] [View]
Kora Golub


[View] [View]
Marieke Guy


[View] [View]
Brian Kelly


[View] [View]
Liz Lyon


[View] [View]
Mahendra Mahey


[View] [View]
Manjula Patel


[View] [View]
Catherine Pink


[View] [View]
Rosemary Russell


[View] [View]
Stephanie Taylor


[View] [View]
Emma Tonkin


[View] [View]

Table 1: Information on UKOLN Items Deposited in Opus Repository

2 Responses to “Preservation of UKOLN’s Web Resources and Papers”

  1. Does that mean Opus doesn’t by default provide a method of browsing the archive by author name unless that author is still affiliated with the organisation? Sounds a baffling decision to have been made to me.

  2. Hi Ian
    I think that was the case previously. I understand that this was because the authentication came from the live LDAP directory and once people had left the institution and their usernames were deleted, they would be deleted from the ePrints repository. I think this has now changed (whether this was due to my request or the migration to the PURE CRIS service which took place around the same time I am unsure).
    Note I also spoke to some people in Southampton and it seems that there is a view held by some that “Records disappear when someone leaves because that’s entirely appropriate“.
    I don’t know how widespread this view is and whether it is implemented in practice, but it seems to me that researchers would be advised to ensure that a record of their publications is held outside their host institution, on services such as Researchgate, Academia,edu, LinkedIn, etc.
    Remember your institutional repository isn’t for life, just for the short period you are a member of the institution! Bath University may be ahead of the field by continuing to provide such records after staff leave their host institution. I’d be interested to hear what the policies are elsewhere.

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