The Prism institutional repository has launched at Northwestern University. Prism preserves and makes available articles, conference presentations, preprints, datasets, and other items created by faculty, staff, and students. Prism helps openness, maximizes reproducibility, and enhances research connections within Feinberg School of Medicine and across the globe.

Prism replaces the former DigitalHub and includes many much-anticipated features, such as the ability to create metadata-only records for offsite datasets, set embargo dates for releasing content to the public, create and curate communities of practice, and share private links to view and edit with colleagues. These new features complement existing features such as the ability to assign Digital Object Identifiers that make records citable, indexing by Google to make research widely discoverable, and a responsive staff at Galter Library to answer questions and provide support.

Kristi Holmes, the Director of Galter Health Sciences Library, Associate Dean of Knowledge Management and Strategy, and professor of Preventive Medicine, played a leading role in the development of Prism. According to Holmes, “It is essential to have a robust institutional repository that can keep up with the latest technologies and trends. As models for open access and data sharing continue to evolve, it's clear that institutional repositories will play an increasingly critical role to make research Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable (FAIR).” She continues, “What makes this project particularly special is the strong collaborative approach we’ve taken both at Northwestern and also in partnership with the larger open source community. I’m grateful to our team at Galter Library for their incredible work.”

“We are excited to announce the launch of Prism as the institutional repository for Feinberg School of Medicine” says Karen Gutzman, Head of Research Assessment and Communications at Galter Health Sciences Library and Learning Center. Prism builds on a strong research foundation first made possible in the DigitalHub repository. “One of the most exciting features of Prism is the ability to create communities on topics, projects, or events” says Gutzman. Communities include open access research from Feinberg on COVID-19, training presentations from the Biostatistics Collaboration Center, and the NUCATS Grant Repository, a centralized resource for grant writers and investigators internal to Northwestern provided by the NUCATS Institute. “Prism is an excellent home for the NUCATS Grants Repository, allowing us to easily share exemplar grant templates and other resources with investigators across the Northwestern University community,” says Dr. Richard D’Aquila, Director of NUCATS.

Prism is built on the InvenioRDM software, which also forms a strong and sustainable foundation for Zenodo. “With its user-friendly interface and advanced features, InvenioRDM is truly a game-changer in the world of repositories. This platform is designed to make research more accessible and open to the public, promoting innovation and collaboration within the academic community,” says Holmes. Over the past several years, CERN and Northwestern have collaborated as core co-developers of the software, partnering with the global Invenio Open Source Community to develop InvenioRDM as a turnkey, scalable, and top-of-the-class user experience software for repositories. The InvenioRDM software offers a reliable environment for science, empowering preservation, credit, discovery, and sharing while maintaining integrity in its responsiveness to the evolving needs of the research community, including data sharing policy compliance. Northwestern contributions to the open source project are led by Matt Carson, Senior Data Scientist and Head of the Galter Library Digital Systems Department, with developer Guillaume Viger leading technical work and Sara Gonzales, Senior Data Librarian at Galter Library, contributing to a wide range of efforts, including serving as the Community Manager.

Notably, Northwestern and CERN recently expanded this collaboration through an award from the NIH Office of Data Science Strategy/Office of the NIH Director pursuant to OTA-21-009, Generalist Repository Ecosystem Initiative (GREI), to Zenodo to help researchers improve discoverability of their data and lead to greater reproducibility and reuse of data. Through this award and others, the infrastructure reflects Desirable Characteristics of Data Repositories for Federally Funded Research and continues to evolve to meet research needs and support a vibrant data ecosystem.