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Arca Discovery Layer Task Group Terms of Reference
Arca is a collaborative initiative to support the development and implementation of digital repositories at BC post-secondary institutions. Foundational to the creation of the proposed Provincial Digital Library, Arca is a province-wide network of digital repositories that will:
- provide access to faculty and student research output across multiple post-secondary institutions via a cross-repository search layer;
- support the management of institutional digital assets;
- showcase BC as a hub for knowledge creation across Canada and around the world.
Arca is being built on Islandora, a Canadian-developed open-source platform currently in use at over 100 public and private institutions worldwide. This shared platform will provide postsecondary institutions with open-access repositories for research, theses, and any other digital assets they wish to make available to the wider community.
Phase 2 of the Arca project is development of a discovery layer enabling cross-repository search of BC post-secondary digital repositories, including those using repository platforms other than Islandora. For the scope of this Task Group, an institutional repository is a service that enables an organization to manage, store, preserve, and provide access to digital content created and managed by local institutions. A repository may include a wide variety of content for a range of purposes and users and may support research, teaching, learning, and administrative processes. The discovery layer is intended to be a unified search interface, fully searchable across institutions and collections. Search results are consistent and can be filtered by the end user.
The Arca Discovery Layer Task Group has received a mandate from the Arca Advisory Committee to:
- Identify goals and use cases for the Arca discovery layer;
- Identify options for implementing the discovery layer;
- Evaluate discovery layer options to ensure they utilise industry standards for interoperability, with an eye to potential future use beyond the post-secondary sector;
- Represent and consider the interests and needs of a diversity of BC post-secondary digital repositories
- Make a recommendation to the Arca Advisory Committee of a solution that best fits the Arca project's currently outlined needs.
Membership in the Arca Discovery Layer Task Group will consist of representatives from Arca participating institutions, other BC post-secondary digital repositories, and the Arca Advisory Committee, as well as the BC ELN coordinator. The following criteria will guide membership:
- To ensure efficient decision-making there will be a maximum of 10 members, including the Advisory Committee liaison and the BC ELN Coordinator.
- The Chair of the BC Digitization Coalition Task Group will have a seat to ensure the group has an understanding of other sectors' needs.
- Members should be individuals with a high level of technical expertise and a system orientation.
- Members should be available for frequent meetings for the duration of the process, expected to be completed within 2016.
- BC Digitization Coalition Task Group / University of British Columbia – Paul Joseph
- British Columbia Institute of Technology – Elizabeth Padilla (Arca Advisory Committee representative)
- Douglas College – Trevor Smith (Arca early adopter site)
- Kwantlen Polytechnic University – Caroline Daniels (Chair)
- Langara College – Brent Searle
- Simon Fraser University – Janice Banser
- University of Northern British Columbia – James MacDonald (Arca early adopter site)
- Vancouver Island University – Dan Sifton
Communication among Task Group members will primarily take place via the listserv.
The Arca Advisory Committee will dissolve the Arca Discovery Layer Task Group upon completion of the process.
Discovery Layer Task Group meetings are held virtually or by teleconference as needed.
The Arca Discovery Layer Task Group will deliver a recommendation to the Arca Advisory
Committee of the discovery layer solution that best fits the Arca project's currently outlined