The Sustainable Digital Scholarship (SDS) platform is an online open-access repository, a service open to all University of Oxford academic staff and managed currently by the Humanities Division, which provides researchers and their projects with a versatile, long-term solution for the storage and publication of research.
The SDS platform is able to accommodate almost any kind of file or digital resource, and allows researchers to: deposit research outputs, ranging from text to images to audio-visual media to code or .XML files (for example, TEI files); to tag them with custom keywords and metadata; to organise them into datasets or collections; to share them with collaborators, researchers, and the general public; and to search across their datasets by keywords and metadata fields.
Every file ingested into the SDS platform is minted with a unique versioned DOI, making it easy to reference in journals, books or web resources. Further to this the platform has powerful functionality allowing citation or (where appropriate) download of research, and tracks these interactions with built-in analytics, making it easy to evaluate research impacts and measure engagement. Importantly it is also possible to assign appropriate copyright licenses, on a project or file-by-file basis and put permissions in place to restrict access to published files to specific individuals or institutions should this be required.
The SDS platform is compliant with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 standard, ensuring that research outputs ingested are accessible to the widest possible audience. It also meets ISO27001-compliant standards of information security management, meaning it is a safe choice for the hosting of research data and has multiple backups to ensure that research outputs are safeguarded, and can be deemed digitally sustainable.
The SDS service is available to help researchers set up their projects on the SDS platform, for instance providing assistance with adding branding and defining the structure of datasets and custom metadata fields. In many cases the SDS service is also able to help migrate existing datasets into the SDS platform on a researcher's behalf, and once this process is completed, can provide members of research projects with accounts to load any further research data. The SDS service offers training and service support for the duration of a project’s funded period, and on an ad hoc helpdesk service basis following this.
As the SDS platform is managed centrally by the University of Oxford’s Humanities Division, projects using the SDS platform can be assured that their project will not face additional future costs to keep their research accessible and safe in the decades to come. Further to this the SDS service collaborates with other data repositories within the University, including the Oxford Research Archive’s data repository (ORA-Data), to ensure that research outputs can be easily extracted from the SDS platform, and safely migrated into a cold storage digital archive, if and when desired.