The Rubicon Research Repository (RRR) project began with the goal to to make the available resources more accessible. Many of the documents now available through the RRR were first identified and scanned as part of our Preservation of Historical Documentation (PoHD) project. The RRR has continued to grow with the collection and scanning of new documents for inclusion into this free digital repository.
Purpose of the Project
The Human Genome Project has demonstrated that sharing information can enhance the success and growth of a research community. Those in the field of Hyperbaric Medicine and Research could benefit greatly from such collaboration. Unfortunately, many valuable resources that can be used to compare efforts or serve as a baseline are scattered across various repositories or are lost. In 2002, The Office of Naval Research tasked UHMS with performing a comprehensive analysis of the Navy’s research and development program in Undersea Medicine (1). The panel found that 60% of the young researchers in the field left within less than ten (10) years. Additionally, it was discovered that many of the senior scientists in this arena would retire in the near future (52% retiring in less than 10 years and 96% retiring in less than twenty years). Further, the Navy had not trained any investigators in the previous ten (10) years. This turnover in researchers and the loss of senior scientists potentially signifies a great loss in human knowledge that can be transitioned to new researchers. It is therefore crucial that information management and access to resources be strengthened by providing effective and timely methods for retrieval of valuable documents.
At the 2002 UHMS annual meeting, Dr. Garcia-Covarrubias and Dr. Van Meter published an abstract concluding that the UHMS abstract to publication rate is lower when compared with other medical fields (2). From their abstract, “the overall publication rate in MEDLINE indexed journals for 1996, 1997, and 1998 was 17.9% (26 of 145), 14.8% (27 of 182), and 18.7% (33 of 176) respectively”. Their abstract identifies a real need to find data and publications that are available to enhance communication and collaboration. The most quoted literature searches include PubMed/MEDLINE and the Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC) databases. Much of the information regarding undersea research is scattered across numerous other databases throughout the world (3). Some of this information is not indexed and is therefore lost except to the few who know exactly what they are seeking.
Aims/Objectives: The aim of this project is to archiving and preservation of research publications in an electronic format. By making these collections of often hard to find documents electronic, we are making the available information accessible to better facilitate collaborative research efforts.
Background and Significance
Since we began our collaboration with Duke University to index the UHMS library holdings, we have located documents from the Naval Medical Research Center (NMRC) that were previously not indexed. To date thirteen (13) reports created at NMRC have been located and sent to DTIC for indexing. Additionally, we have located eight (8) journal articles from the Undersea Baromedical Research (UBR) journal that were not indexed in PubMed/MEDLINE. Through this project, we are able to verify current literature data while creating an index for many documents that are not searchable elsewhere (i.e., UHMS abstracts, theses work, etc.).
To date we have scanned the Undersea Baromedical Research from 1974 to 1992 with support from GUE, Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine from 1993 to present with support from GUE, UHMS Workshops with support from DAN, Underwater Medicine and Related Sciences supported by UHMS, Hyperbaric Oxygen Review from 1980 to 1985, and Journal of Hyperbaric Medicine from 1986 to 1992. The Board of Directors for UHMS voted at their annual meeting to include all journal articles we scanned in the UBR, UHM, and JHM collections in our repository. With the assistance of Mr. Nishi, we secured permission from Defence R&D Canada (DRDC), formerly Defence and Civil Institute of Environmental Medicine (DCIEM) to include their non-classified technical reports. The American Academy of Underwater Sciences (AAUS) Board voted in March 2007 to include their workshops and proceedings from 1985 to present. The Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) donated two symposia and two technical reports. The Royal Australian Navy School of Undersea Medicine collection was scanned and is included in the collection due to the hard work of Dr. Pennefather. The Executive Directors of the South Pacific Underwater Medicine Society (SPUMS) allowed us to start adding their collection of journals spanning over 30 years, in January 2008.
We currently have over 1,000 US Navy technical documents available. Dr. Nuckols has also loaned his collection of US Naval documents from the Naval Academy for use in this project. This collection consists of eight boxes, approximately 1000 reports he has collected over the years. The DUMC Library collection includes 118 NMRC reports, 614 Naval Experimental Diving Unit (NEDU) reports, and 331 Naval Submarine Medical Research Laboratory (NSMRL) reports.
Design and Procedures
We have sought external guidance in order to ensure that our project is able to maintain standards for similar digitization and preservation projects as well as providing the best possible content and accessibility for our users. This group consists of: The Rubicon Foundation Board of Directors and the DUMC Library UHMS Collection Oversight Committee with Richard Moon, MD and Bryant Stolp, MD, PhD as consultants.
We are adhering to the Framework of Guidance for Building Good Digital Collections set forth by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).
Text pages are scanned at 300 dpi and images are scanned at 600dpi in accordance with the National Library of Medicine (NLM) standard for digitization of PubMed Central Back issues.
We began the project running Dspace 1.3.2 on an Apple X-serve Dual core G5 server. In 2011, we contacted with Grass Routes Networking to maintain the current version of Dspace in their large data center. Dspace is an open source project available for download on SourceForge. The Dspace Federation is a part of the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative. The documents are collected and scanned on a Fujitsu fi-4102c scanner connected to a laptop. The scanned TIFF files are then processed into Adobe Acrobat© 8.0.
Metadata is harvested from the DTIC database and run through software written by Keida Ikeda, Ph.D. (DUMC) that converts metadata to the Dublin Core format needed for the Dspace Unix Import Tool. Tab de-limited UHMS abstract files were available for several years. These files for formatted for import by Richard Ingle, MS (IBM, USA). Metadata that is not available through DTIC is being handled by employing a new Metadata schema developed by the DUMC Library UHMS Collection Oversight Committee for the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine literature (4, 5).
Original materials are received and processed in accordance with the guidelines above. The original documents are returned to the source or delivered to the DUMC library for inclusion in the UHMS collection holdings following the collection guidelines.
Preservation of digital materials is done onsite by a nightly server back-up. Materials that have not been entered into the database are also backed up.
In order to achieve optimal exposure as well as ensure preservation of this valuable work in the future, we have begun collaboration with the DUMC Archives and DTIC. The Duke and DTIC servers follow a security and back-up policy to prevent their corruption.
The Duke MedSpace Repository serves as a back-up to our collections as well as provides greater exposure of the content by utilizing the Duke web presence.
DTIC is the information system used by government researchers and contractors for access to technical reports and publications. Many of the older technical reports are not currently included as PDF documents in the DTIC archives. We have also scanned documents that are listed as “Distribution Code: 02 – U.S. GOVT. AND THEIR CONTRACTORS”. The Rubicon Foundation is not in a position to ensure the safety of these documents and therefore they are not preserved on our servers. We have begun collaboration with DTIC for our collection holdings to be added to the DTIC database and for the Distribution 02 documents to be added to their collection directly. By making sure that these files are included in the DTIC collection we are ensuring that they will be seen by researchers at their primary source for this literature.
In the first year, we required several questions be answered as a part of registration process. We used these results for guidance to collections and resources that users need for their own research. At the end of the first year we removed the registration process as recommended by users and saw an increase in web traffic to our site. In order to assure we are providing the best resources and information available and necessary, we solicit feedback on our web site as well as in other internet forums.
Thus far, the work has been completed on a volunteer basis. While this has provided the project with support for the launch of the repository, we are rapidly becoming overwhelmed and require additional staff support. Due to the value of these documents, we are seeking additional financial support to ensure the timeline required for completion does not become detrimental to the overall goals of the project. This will be used for salary support to continue the scans, metadata harvesting, and import of this material into the online repository for the public to access.
1. Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society. An Assessment Of A National Naval Need For Undersea Research. Office of Naval Research, report in response to 5000 Ser 341/270 20 Feb 02.
2. Garcia-Covarrubias, L and Van Meter, K. Publication Rate Of Abstracts Presented At Annual Meetings Of The Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society 1996-1998. Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine, Vol. 29, No. 2 Supplement, 2002.
3. Hobbs, GW. Hyperbaric Medical Literature. Global Underwater Explorers Annual Conference. Gainesville, FL. November 5, 2006.
4. Carden VRM, Koonts RS, Peterson RA, Lackey CS, Thibodeau PL, Hobbs GW. Creating an Information Revolution in Hyperbaric Medicine. Medical Library Association Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, PA. May 18-23, 2007.
5. Lackey CS, Hobbs GW, Carden VRM, Koonts RS, Peterson RA, Thibodeau PL. Recommended Key Words for Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Literature. Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society Annual Meeting, Kapaluna, Maui Hawaii, 2007.