Phase one of Unlocking Thesis Data is complete. You can read about the work of the project in the past three months in our report
Grace, Stephen and Whitton, Michael and Gould, Sara and Kotarski, Rachael Mapping the UK thesis landscape: Phase 1 project report for Unlocking Thesis Data. Project Report. University of East London, London. (10.15123/PUB.4307).
The report covers the background of community interest which led to the project, and analyses the survey responses from EThOS contacts we previously mentioned in the blog. It then summarises the six institutional case studies looking at thesis-related processes in detail at a range of universities (East London, Southampton, LSE, UAL, Bristol and Leicester). The case studies showed a wide variety of approaches in processing and making available theses, and this insight will help us ensure that we consider solutions that work for the widest possible range of universities. Each of the case studies required interviews with staff involved in processing theses, by a combination of Michael Whitton (University of Southampton), Sara Gould (The British LIbrary), Rachael Kotarski (The British Library) and me. Many thanks to Michael, Sara and Rachael for working with me on the project.
Subject to further Jisc funding, we hope in the next phase of Unlocking Thesis Data to address the following five recommendations from the report:
- Hold at least three thesis clinics to investigate opportunities and barriers to assigning DOI and ORCiD identifiers in UK universities
- Engage with system suppliers/vendors to identify opportunities for enhancing software with required PIDs
- Consult with EThOS formally to understand what needs to change in EThOS systems and processes to harvest and display PIDs and related metadata for theses and their data
- Evaluate approaches to updating UKETD profile, initially in EPrints, before planning software enhancements
- Investigate requirements and solutions for those institutions that use EThOS as their first-point repository
You can find links to all the case studies, the survey and the phase one report at http://dx.doi.org/10.15123/PROJECT.15.