Repository Platform (WEKO3)

WEKO3, our repository platform, is a platform where academic resources such as research publications, gray literature, theses, research data, and any other resources which researchers have decided to make openly accessible are stored and published. The relevant files are deposited in the institutional repository operated by the researcher's affiliated institution. If the institution uses JAIRO Cloud, which is a nationally provided institutional repository cloud service jointly provided by the Japan Consortium for Open Access Repository (JPCOAR) and NII, the resources are deposited here. Digital object identifiers (DOI) can be added and the relationship between the research publication and data maintained, thereby making the academic resources more reusable. The usage of digital contents on the repository platform is tracked and the relevant statistics are provided to the institution and researchers.

The previous system WEKO2, which provided the base for JAIRO-Cloud, was developed primarily to store and publish research publications. In addition to research publications, WEKO3 will accommodate research data as well. The adoption of Microservice architecture for WEKO3 is intended to make the system flexible and expandable. Invenio, an open source software for managing digital contents in institutional repositories that was developed and used by the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN), is used as the base system. The repository platform will provide both public and private spaces in order to meet different content sharing needs: some provide digital contents only after certain embargo period, some only on application-basis, and some only after anonymizing a part of data.

Our repository platform WEKO3 will ensure that research data produced from research activities funded by Japanese funding agencies are securely stored and published in Japan. Academic journals nowadays are requiring evidence data to be submitted along with research articles. To meet this requirement, many researchers are providing their research data in the form of supplements to academic journals or in free repositories on the Internet. However, such free spaces do not guarantee long-term preservation, tend to relocate valuable research data outside the country, and give commercial publishers control over such research data. WEKO3 will provide a secure base for research data produced in Japan, which will be also be assigned DOIs to make them findable and reusable.

Researchers may also use WEKO3 to publish their data. There is growing recognition that research data are as important as, or even more important than, research publications themselves because when research data is analyzed from various angles by different researchers, this leads to greater scholarship. Accordingly, there are now "data journals (*)" available, where research data can be published much like research publications; conditions for data acquisition, data location, file format, and information on how to use the data are stated for each data article. Data articles published in data journals can be used by other researchers for conducting new research projects, and be cited in their publications, thereby leading to increased recognition for the data production.

(*) Examples of data journals: Scientific Data by Nature; Data in Brief by Elsevier; Data Science Journal by CODATA; Polar Data Journal by National Institute of Polar Research, etc.