Jisc Open Research Hub Research data blogs

Mixed access and licence values in repository records

On 22nd May 2019, members of the Jisc Open Research Hub team held a webinar which presented a set of design options around the assigning of more than one licence or access type to a repository deposit. The aim was to get feedback to help the design team decide which approach to develop. 

Although the webinar concentrated on the UX aspects on the solution for the Jisc Research Repository, the overall problem that is being addressed is an international one and has cropped up at workshops in the UK and overseas. 

What’s driving discussion is the move towards bringing together files in order to create a research package. These packages might be publications, data and code, all of which may have different licences. The legal implications of what someone can then do with the research package is being addressed by the University of Glasgow in a continuing set of workshops about research data licencing. It is also of concern to the international audience and was a hot topic of conversation in the Legal interoperability group meeting at the recent Research Data Alliance plenary in Philadelphia. 

To complicate matters further, files might have varying access types (for example, is it open or restricted?) This can make for a dense and complex user experience. A downloader or even a submitter might get confused about what to do.

When addressing these problems from a product design perspective in the Jisc Open Research Hub, it became clear that there were a variety of ways the problem could be addressed, depending on with whom the burden of interpretation sits. The designers described various options of the how the problem could be resolved through the application of validation rules and on screen messaging. 

Surveying the landscape

To capture as much detail as we can, we’ve published a survey which incorporates these designs and has been made available for feedback. We’ve also included additional questions that seek to capture the local experience of how researchers and support staff handle deposits with multiple licences or access types.

Your opinions on how you would solve this problem will directly help shape our solution and build consensus about best practice in this area. The survey is linked to below, along with a recording of the webinar. It is recommended to watch this if you are new to the area. The key designs being discussed are included in the survey. 

The survey is open until July 31st, 2019.

 Webinar recording

Online survey