Open access (OA) repositories are key components of the research infrastructure. They provide open access to the products of research and reflect an emerging commitment by research institutions towards the stewardship of the research outputs. Repositories are also becoming an important source of administrative information for governments, funding agencies and for tracking research outputs and assessing the impact of the research they support.

Science is an increasingly global, distributed and cross-disciplinary endeavor. Repository infrastructures, therefore, should mirror the needs of the research community and enable researchers, regardless of location or disciplinary practice, to access research outputs worldwide. All efforts should be made to avoid silos, which act as barriers to the usability of content.

Over the past several years, a number of regional and national OA repository networks have emerged. These networks have been developed to fulfill different requirements and they have adopted a variety of metadata standards and vocabularies. Greater interoperability across networks will improve discovery and enable the development of more sophisticated cross-repository services such as usage statistics or content analysis by text mining. In addition, a shared understanding and common approaches to vocabularies and metadata will provide uniform information to governments and funding agencies about the products of funded research, and build confidence with users and stakeholders.

This international, multi-stakeholder working group will develop a strategy to ensure greater interoperability across repository networks and other platforms. The Confederation of Open Access Repositories (COAR) will be the convener of the working group, and CASRAI will facilitate the process of developing the strategy. Members of the working group will be representatives from major regional repository networks, EuroCRIS and CASRAI and will be committed to adopting the outcomes.

In order to ensure input from all relevant stakeholders, a review circle will be formed to consult with the broader community at major milestones. The group will commence its work in Oct 2014 via a mix of teleconference and online collaboration tools.

For more information, please contact Kathleen Shearer, Executive Director of COAR: