May 21, 2022

COAR (Confederation of Open Access Repositories) Releases Technical Recommendations for Next Generation Repositories

From an Announcement by Eloy Rodrigues, COAR Chairman and Kathleen Shearer, COAR Executive Director:

2017-11-28_10-10-02At COAR, we believe the globally distributed network of more than 3000 repositories can be leveraged to create a more sustainable and innovative system for sharing and building on the results of research. Collectively, repositories can provide a comprehensive view of the research of the whole world, while also enabling each scholar and institution to participate in the global network of scientific and scholarly enquiry. Building additional services such as standardized usage metrics, peer review and social networking on top of a trusted global network of repositories has the potential to offer a viable alternative.

The vision underlying the work of Next Generation Repositories is,

To position repositories as the foundation for a distributed, globally networked infrastructure for scholarly communication, on top of which layers of value added services will be deployed, thereby transforming the system, making it more research-centric, open to and supportive of innovation, while also collectively managed by the scholarly community.

An important component of this vision is that repositories will provide access to a wide variety of research outputs, creating the conditions whereby a greater diversity of contributions to the scholarly record will be accessible, and also formally recognized in research assessment processes.


Source: Behaviours and Technical Recommendations of the COAR Next Generation Repositories Working Group (2017)

Our vision is aligned with others, such as MIT’s Future of Libraries Report and Lorcan Dempsey’s notion of the “inside-out” library, that are defining a new role of libraries in the 21st century. This future involves a shift away from libraries purchasing content for their local users, towards libraries curating and sharing with the rest of the world the research outputs produced at their institution. COAR’s mission is to ensure that, as libraries and research organizations invest in and enhance their local services, they adopt common standards and functionalities that will allow them to participate in the global network. We very much hope that the recommendations provided in this report will contribute to the transition towards this new role for repositories and libraries.

From an Introductory Blog Post

The report describes 11 new behaviours, as well as the technologies, standards and protocols that will facilitate the development of new services on top of the collective network, including social networking, peer review, notifications, and usage assessment.

  1. Exposing Identifiers
  2. Declaring Licenses at a Resource Level
  3. Discovery through Navigation
  4. Interact with Resources (Annotation, Commentary and Review)
  5. Batch Discovery
  6. Resource Transfer
  7. Collecting and Exposing Activity Metadat
  8. Identification of User
  9. Authentication of User
  10. Exposing Standardized Usage Metrics
  11. Preservation of Resources


Direct to Full Text Document (32 pages; PDF)

COAR Next Generation Repositories Web Site and Additional Resources (Including Webinar Recording and Conference Presentations)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.