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IMLS, Sloan Foundation Jointly Award SHARE $1 Million to Develop Notification Service

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image © Niklas Wikström

The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) has been awarded a joint $1 million grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation to develop and launch the SHared Access Research Ecosystem (SHARE) Notification Service. SHARE is a collaborative initiative of ARL, the Association of American Universities (AAU), and the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) to ensure the preservation of, access to, and reuse of research findings and reports.

SHARE aims to make research assets more discoverable and more accessible, and to enable the research community to build upon these assets in creative ways. SHARE’s first project, the Notification Service, will inform stakeholders when research results—including articles and data—are released.

Funding agencies, university research offices, institutional and disciplinary repositories, and other interested parties have found it difficult to keep abreast of the release of publications, datasets, and other results of scholarly research. Across the disciplines, principal investigators and other scholars do not have a single, structured way to report on these releases in a timely and comprehensive manner. The SHARE Notification Service is a higher education-based initiative to address this problem by strengthening efforts to identify, discover, and track research outputs.

The SHARE Notification Service project plan was released in February 2014. A prototype of the service is scheduled for deployment by late summer 2014, a beta release incorporating community feedback is targeted for fall 2014, and the full release is expected in fall 2015.

“We strongly believe that ensuring broad and continuing access to research is central to the mission of higher education,” said ARL executive director Elliott Shore. “The SHARE Notification Service will help accelerate further research and discovery.”

AAU executive vice president John Vaughn said, “We appreciate the support of IMLS and the Sloan Foundation for this effort. Their support is going to play a vital role in SHARE’s ability to carry out its mission of helping universities to make their scholarly work widely available to the public.”

“As the recipients of tens of billions of dollars in federal research investments each year, public universities are committed to making their federal research findings and advancements public and accessible for everyone to see,” APLU chief academic officer R. Michael Tanner said. “The SHARE Notification Service is the first step toward assuring enduring and comprehensive public access.”

IMLS director Susan H. Hildreth said, “At IMLS, we look for proposals with robust reach and deep, lasting impacts for the best ‘returns’ on our federal investment dollars. The SHARE initiative certainly meets those criteria. We are grateful to have the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation as our funding partner on this important work to make the wide universe of academic research more discoverable to everyone.”

“SHARE promises to be an essential piece of scholarly communication infrastructure, enabling innovative tools and services on top of traditional and emerging research products,” said Josh Greenberg, director of the Sloan Foundation’s Scholarly Communication program. “We are proud to partner with the IMLS in support of this visionary platform.”

SHARE’s long-term vision is a robust repository ecosystem that includes the Notification Service as well as the following three elements:

  • A registry layer that can accommodate both publications and research data
  • A discovery layer to help interested parties find research outputs across repositories
  • A content aggregation layer that moves beyond curation and discovery to facilitate data and text mining of large amounts of content, as well as other community-driven services

SHARE anticipates that these three additional layers will be discussed, refined, and pursued in rough concert with the Notification Service planning.

For more information about the project, visit the SHARE webpage and follow SHARE on Twitter and Facebook.

The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) is a nonprofit organization of 125 research libraries in the US and Canada. ARL’s mission is to influence the changing environment of scholarly communication and the public policies that affect research libraries and the diverse communities they serve. ARL pursues this mission by advancing the goals of its member research libraries, providing leadership in public and information policy to the scholarly and higher education communities, fostering the exchange of ideas and expertise, facilitating the emergence of new roles for research libraries, and shaping a future environment that leverages its interests with those of allied organizations. ARL is on the web at http://www.arl.org/.

The Association of American Universities (AAU) is a nonprofit association of 60 US and two Canadian preeminent public and private research universities. Founded in 1900, AAU focuses on national and institutional issues that are important to research-intensive universities, including funding for research, research and education policy, and graduate and undergraduate education. AAU is on the web at http://www.aau.edu/.

The Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) is a research, policy, and advocacy organization representing 235 public research universities, land-grant institutions, state university systems, and affiliated organizations.  Founded in 1887, APLU is North America’s oldest higher education association with member institutions in all 50 US states, the District of Columbia, four US territories, Canada, and Mexico. Annually, member campuses enroll 4.7 million undergraduates and 1.3 million graduate students, award 1.1 million degrees, employ 1.3 million faculty and staff, and conduct $41 billion in university-based research. APLU is on the web at http://www.aplu.org/.

imls-logoThe Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. IMLS’s mission is to inspire libraries and museums to advance innovation, lifelong learning, and cultural and civic engagement. IMLS’s grant making, policy development, and research help libraries and museums deliver valuable services that make it possible for communities and individuals to thrive. To learn more, visit http://www.imls.gov/ and follow IMLS on Facebook and Twitter.

sloan-foundation-logoThe Alfred P. Sloan Foundation is a philanthropic, not-for-profit, grantmaking institution that supports original research and education in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and economic performance. Funds for this project were provided through the Foundation’s Digital Information Technology program, which leverages developments in information technology to increase the effectiveness of computational research and scholarly communication. The Sloan Foundation is on the web at http://www.sloan.org/.