Penn State ScholarSphere is a new research repository service offered by the University Libraries and Information Technology Services, enabling Penn State faculty, staff, and students to share their scholarly works such as research datasets, working papers, research reports, and image collections, to name a few examples. ScholarSphere will make these works more discoverable, accessible, usable, and thus broadly recognized and known.
The ScholarSphere service will help researchers actively manage stored versions of their research and preserve it, ensuring its longevity over time for future generations of scholars to find, use, and build on. The preservation functions include scheduled and on-demand verifications of deposited works, characterization of files to mitigate future format obsolescence, regular file backups, and replication to disaster recovery sites.
The repository renders research works immediately citable via stable, short URLs and metadata about research is immediately exportable to citation managers. ScholarSphere enables documentation and description of research data for optimal discovery and curation of data through their lifecycle of use and reuse.
Researchers will be able to share works stored in ScholarSphere with the Penn State community either by sharing directly with specified individuals or with established groups. Researchers will also be able to share each of their files at different access levels including read-only and edit modes, allowing full control over who can view and edit deposited works.
A trusted institutional service, ScholarSphere has safeguards in place for keeping private research secure and unchanged over time, as researchers warrant, as well as for keeping access restricted to the individual researcher.
ScholarSphere will be undergoing usability and accessibility testing throughout the summer for a beta release in September of 2012. Stay tuned for more information about the ScholarSphere launch and about the technologies underlying ScholarSphere.