Library receives grant for digital repository

The Tech Library and Information Center received an $857,000 grant over three years for Georgia Library Learning Online system (GALILEO), a repository system of scholarly digital content.

GALILEO is a virtual library service that provides a centralized resource database to state institutions, including the universities, public libraries and high schools. These services include licensing access to databases and journals.

“We worked with the central GALILEO group on this particular project to get some scholarly repositories up and running,” said Tyler Walters, Associate Director for Technology and Resource Services for the library and principal investigator on the grant.

Each individual campus will have their own repository and these will feed a centralized statewide repository. Most of the campuses have already set up their own individual repositories, but a few are still in the process of developing such repositories.

The goal of the first year is to set up the central site and harvest metadata from the existing repositories. Later in the year the goal will also be to broaden the three repositories that are still being developed.

The second year’s goal is populating the repositories with digitized materials and doing outreach and promotion. The goal is to fill these repositories with scholarly materials which include journal articles, technical papers, research reports and any scholarship or research output created by faculty and students. Additionally, marketing efforts will be made to get students and faculty interested in depositing materials through such a service.

The third year’s emphasis will switch to teaching others how to initiate similar projects. Currently only four or five other states do projects similar to this. While these repositories do not have to be at the state level, this system is convenient since university systems are state-based and it is a costly project for a single campus.

“The goal is to look at the consortial model, how we can build digital repositories like this in a consortial model so that the costs are lowered for individual campuses but at the same time they can collect and provide access to the material that student and faculty want to put in there,” Walters said.

The key difference between other states that have similar digital repositories with this project is that member institutions will have their own repositories in addition to the statewide collection. This will allow each individual campus to maintain their own content while still having access to the content of the entire collaboration.

While this is a grant project, the hope is that the repository will be an ongoing project. So another main concern of the project is to focus on the sustainability of the project beyond the period of grant funding.

“During the grant phase we want to build the basic infrastructure and service but we want to do it in a way where we can do it as economically as possible. We want to show value so that after the grant period we can look for additional funding to sustain the repository service,” Walters said.