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VOA3R. V irtual O pen A ccess A griculture & A quaculture R epository: sharing scientific and scholarly research related to agriculture, food, and environment. Euraslic Conference, Lyon, May 18 2011 The VOA3R partners, represented by Marc Goovaerts , Head Library Hasselt University

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Virtual Open Access Agriculture & Aquaculture Repository: sharing scientific and scholarly research related to agriculture, food, and environment

  • Euraslic Conference, Lyon, May 18 2011
  • The VOA3R partners, represented by
  • Marc Goovaerts , Head Library Hasselt University

  • VOA3R: An introduction
  • Background
    • Open Access
    • Communities of practice
  • Stakeholders
  • The VOA3R platform & its services
    • Repository
    • Community features
  • Timeline
  • New partners - invitation

The VOA3R platform will integrate existing open access repositories as well as digital libraries, sharing scientific and open access research related to Agriculture, Food, and Environment.

VOA3R is dedicated to providing a community-oriented platform based on social networking, micro-blogging and social bookmarking.

VOA3R is connected with other European projects: Open Aire, Driver

voa3r major objectives

Devising and providing a single point access to scholarly research in the area of Agriculture and Aquaculture.

Analyzing and modeling research work processes, inputs and outcomes, coming out with a detailed meta-model serving the basis for devising new search and navigation interfaces that are specific to scholarly information needs during their work processes.

Analyzing existing and alternative approaches to the evaluation of scholarly research. Experimenting alternatives to peer review in the context of open access repositories, based on the meta-models for research work developed.

Formalizing meta-models of research work, coming up with ontologies that enable new forms of search and browsing enhanced by existing semantic metadata repository tools.


VOA3R is a 3-year European project launched in June 2010 and funded by the European Commission under the seventh framework ICT Policy Support Program.

It brings together 14 organizations from 10 European countries and 3 collaborators from external organizations..

voa3r co funding
VOA3R (co-)funding

ICT Policy Support Programme aims at

stimulating innovation

and competitiveness


wider uptake and

best use of ICT by


governments and


voa3r partners
VOA3R Partners
  • UAH (University of Alcala)
  • AUA (Agricultural University of Athens)
  • UDE (University of Duisburg-Essen)
  • GRNET (Greek Research and Technology Network SA)
  • SLU (Swedish University of Agriculture Sciences)
  • UHASSELT (Hasselt University)
  • ICROFS (International Center for Research in Organic Food Systems)
  • INRA (French National Institute for Agricultural Research)
  • CULS (Czech University of Life Sciences)
  • ACTAInfo (ACTA Informatique)
  • ARI (Agricultural Research Institute)
  • CINECA (ConsorzioInteruniversitario)
  • TEIA (Technological Educational Institute of Athens)
  • ACTA (Association de Coordination Technique Agricole)

+ indirectly:

  • FAO
open access 1
Open Access - 1

Options to collect in VOA3R:

Open Access journals

Peer reviewed (see


Universities/Research institutes collect the output in an institutional repository:

Authors version of a published work

Other publications: reports – presentations – maps – audiovisual material - unpublished work – other research projects

The research data of the publications

Conference proceedings in Open Access

Topics: Agriculture - Aquaculture - Environment

open access 2
Open Access - 2

Options to collect in VOA3R:

Existing repositories in the VOA3R consortium:

SLU DSPACE and Epsilon Repositories. Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (Sweden).

ProdInra Repository. INRA (France).

U-GOV Repository. CINECA (Italy)

OceanDocs Repository. UNESCO-IODE

Organic Eprints Repository. ICROFS (Denmark)

WebAGRIS Agricultural Research Institute. ARI (Cyprus)

Other partners will make their collections OAI-PMH compatible (following the VOA3R guidelines)

New partners are invited to join

quality control assessment
QualityControl & Assessment

Major forms

Peer review based on the Journal System

Assessment - Evaluation: Web of Science as benchmark

New forms:


Repositories doesn’t have quality control

Internet makes new forms of quality control possible

Evaluation can be based on a broader scale of tools

communities of practice
Communities of practice

Identity – the bedrock of social architecture

Profile & Reputation

Presence – the sense of life


Contacts & Groups

Norms & Rules


Sharing - “I share because of a joined passion and interest”

Conversation & Collaboration

No matter how much software we build, people build the relationships, and they build them out of words first!

Otherwise participation devolves into viewership

examples of networking 1
Examples of networking - 1

Linkedln - Professional networking

examples of networking 2
Examples of networking - 2

CiteULike – Zotero

Social bookmarking

Bibliographic tools for individuals – groups -

examples of networking 3
Examples of networking - 3


Bibliographic tools for individuals – groups

examples of networking 4
Examples of networking - 4

MyExperiment – share research objects

who are the stakeholders
Who are the stakeholders?





Information Managers

Decision makers

the Industry

and other organisations

but also: the anonymous web surfer

and certainly: Other systems and services!

  • Producers
  • Consumers
  • External systems
the producers needs
The producers’ needs

Publishing research online

pre- and post-publish support

Quality control / peer-reviewing

→ model the scholarly process

Make research items more accessible

Support post-publication assessment

Foster post-publication dialogue

Electronic CV

Integration in the research environment

the consumers needs
The consumers’ needs

Information retrieval

open access

heterogeneous content

locate, search / semantic search


Information processing

layers of links

online reading: annotations, bookmarks, reading basket

author’s background & other relevant resource

interactivity: comments, annotations, rating

the voa3r platform
The VOA3R platform

Key objectives

Improve the spread of agriculture, aquaculture and environmental research results (European and international)

by using an innovative approach to sharing open access research products

a federation approach that integrates existing open access repositories and scholarly publication management systems

Main innovation

Social portal

Community-focused integrated service

key features repository
Key features – Repository

High quality content:

VOA3R standard for metadata

Based on Agris AP

Use of ontologies:

FAO Agrovoc thesaurus

Plant ontology


VOA3R is committed to exposing its contents as open linked data expressed in RDF

Peer review processes for open access repositories (study)

social portal challenges
Social Portal - Challenges

The critical point for social networking success

A social network is successful only if it reaches a critical mass of users

Only generalist networks seems successful at the moment (e.g. Linkedln)

Resistance and distrust of researchers

Sharing information in a fully open environment

The older generation has its network and communication tools

A mulitude of networking services are available:

The problem of choice

Maintenance of profiles on different platforms

key features social portal
Key features - Social Portal

New specific tools supporting the scientific communication:

Models to retrieve and describe the research information in terms of elements of the scientific methods established in their field (variables, techniques, assessment methods, kinds of objects of interest, etc.)

Integration of data from existing social networks

And classical social portal tools

ratings, public reviews, suggestions

identity and reputation



For Science

reasons to join the voa3r project
Reasons to join the VOA3R project

You can participate in a project, which is :

Creating new approaches to open access resources

Integrating these resources in a dynamic social network

Using high-quality metadata standards, defining models to describe research methods and processes in a social environment

Experimenting with alternative forms of quality control and assessment of publications

Specifically for the community of the research in agriculture, aquaculture and environment

Enhanced visibility of the own repository and/or other scientific output of the organization