Digital Commons @ Michigan Tech offers the campus a digital repository for worldwide access to its research, scholarship and other academic works created by members of the Michigan Tech community.
Digital Commons @ Michigan Tech has the capacity to provide and preserve access to all types of documents and publications–from articles and reports to books, journals and other creative works. Tools are also provided to manage the publication process, including peer review. Organization can be by college, department or even individual scholar. Access can be open globally, controlled by ISO login or unique passwords when desirable.
To build solid support for this array of possibilities, the library has adopted a project-based approach to explore technical and metadata requirements, intellectual property issues and development timeframes. Our three current projects include Michigan Tech theses, dissertations and master’s reports; a scholarly symposium for Spring 2014; and, coming soon, a special celebration for Winter Carnival 2014. Our growing repository consists of Michigan Tech dissertations, master’s theses and reports from 1998 to the present, which were originally submitted by their respective authors for online access through the library’s catalog.
While such scholarly works can be difficult to locate online, Digital Commons @ Michigan Tech is designed to operate seamlessly with popular search engines to better allow content to be found. During the few short months of development, Michigan Tech theses and dissertations were downloaded over 15,000 times.
Very few institutions, including Michigan Tech, can afford access to theses and dissertations from other universities. Open, digital repositories are one important step in supporting open access while also significantly increasing the visibility of Michigan Tech’s scholarship. We join over 300 international universities and colleges in the Digital Commons Network, which brings together scholarly articles, proceedings, textbooks and other works numbering over 800,000.
Published in Tech Today.