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Researchers’ Weekly Bulletin: the Blog

News for researchers at the Manchester Metropolitan University

Archive for the ‘Full-text electronic documents’ Category

Some Open Access resources

Tuesday, October 28th, 2014

Directory of Open Access Books (DOAB)

The aim of the DOAB is to increase discoverability of Open Access books.  It is open to all publishers who publish academic, peer reviewed books in Open Access.  The DOAB is a service of the OAPEN Foundation, a non-profit organisation dedicated to Open Access publishing of academic books.

OAPEN Library

OAPEN provides a platform for the full text dissemination of Open Access books and provides services to publishers and libraries. The OAPEN Library contains freely accessible academic books, mainly in the area of Humanities and Social Sciences:

Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)

DOAJ is an online directory that indexes and provides access to quality open access, peer-reviewed journals. It contains over 10,000 journals of which nearly 6,000 are searchable at Article level.

The Directory of Open Access Repositories OpenDOAR

OpenDOAR is an authoritative directory of academic open access repositories and is one of the SHERPA Services including RoMEO and JULIET, run by the Centre for Research Communcations (CRC) at the University of Nottingham.


Search OAIster to locate and access digital documents held in more than 1100 Open Access repositories. The content includes journal article pre-prints and postprints, research papers, theses, technical reports, image collections, audio files, movies and datasets. MMU’s e-space is among the repositories searched by the service. OAIster is part of WorldCat, the world’s largest library catalogue.

Bielefeld Academic Search Engine (BASE)

BASE is operated by Bielefeld University Library, Germany and is one of the world’s largest search engines for academic open access web resources.

BASE provides more than 60 million documents from more than 3,000 sources. You can access the full text of about 70% of the indexed documents. – an example of a subject repository

ArXiv is the granddaddy of subject repositories going back to the early 1990s.  It gives open access to nearly a million e-prints (electronic pre-prints) in Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Quantitative Biology, Quantitative Finance and Statistics.

e-space, MMU’s institutional repository

e-space aims to capture and preserve the intellectual output of Manchester Metropolitan University and make it freely available over the Web creating a showcase for research at MMU.

e-space contains pre-prints (journal articles submitted for peer-review), post-prints (final versions of papers that have gone through the peer-review process and have been accepted for publication), book chapters, working papers and conference presentations.

Support for researchers in the Arts and Humanities post-doctorate

Monday, October 20th, 2014

“The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and the British Academy have announced the results of a detailed survey which highlights the kind of issues faced by Arts and Humanities researchers in the period immediately following doctoral study. Many early career researchers are on fixed-term contracts and 92% of those surveyed expressed concern at their career development and the prospects of achieving a permanent position.”

“The report, [Support for Arts and Humanities Researchers Post-PhD,] gives insights into the diversity of roles, opportunities and employment which researchers who work for research organisations undertake immediately after their doctorate, and their needs and aspirations at this stage of their careers. The research was conducted by Oakleigh Consulting Ltd by an online survey and interviews with a selection of research organisations in the UK and with early career researchers (ECRs) in the arts and humanities.”

“The report suggests elements of good practice which would provide better support and advice to help alleviate the concerns and overcome the challenges identified in the survey.”

To view the report go to:

Music industry must change definition of talent

Monday, October 20th, 2014

“Millions of aspiring musicians are being denied the chance to develop careers in the creative industries because companies, colleges and the media haven’t evolved their understanding of talent for the digital age, according to a new report.”

“The Channelling Talent report, published by the Royal Society of Arts (RSA), concluded that “these days David Bowie probably wouldn’t make it past the X-Factor auditions” and recommended that during a time of flux for the industry, that executives, educators and journalists would do well to take a critical look at what they mean by talent.”

“The report was funded by University of Manchester and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) through the Music Communities ‘pilot demonstrator’ project.”

“Examining the mechanisms that generate, develop, promote, recognise and reward talent in music, it came as no surprise to many of the research participants that being wealthy, well-connected and good looking provides a fast track to success. Yet others pointed to a worrying set of consequences for young people aspiring for careers in music. One study highlighted that 95% of front covers of NME in the last two decades featured men; a former NME editor responded saying there were no women of note.”

“The RSA found the potential for financial reward for “bedroom musicians” is limited as live music becomes the only remaining profitable part of the business. This fuels fears that only the already affluent will be able to pursue music as a career – despite growing evidence of the broad benefits to all of participating and practicing music.”

“The report called on the big and the small players in the music industry to do more to live up to their own standards of supporting creative expression and commercial success, taking steps to ensure that norms of talent are constantly questioned.”

[Source AHRC news: ]

Back to school: pre-FWW registers online

Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

“The first tranche of school registers and log books held by nearly 100 regional archives [has been] published online. This is a major achievement: The National Archives worked in partnership with the Archives and Records Association (ARA) to bring information in these collections together online and searchable for the first time in one place. The registers and logbooks have been digitised by DC Thomson Family History and made available via their website”

“In 2010 as part of the implementation of Archives for the 21st Century, an ARA working group, together with The National Archives, sought to develop a national consortium approach for these records. This offered licensing opportunities for archive content to commercial digitisation companies. The working group asked archive services across England and Wales to scope possible options for a pilot digitisation consortium and by far the greatest response from all regions was for the digitisation of pre-1914 school admission registers.”

“The Elementary Education Act of 1870, commonly known as Forster’s Act after WE Forster who drafted and introduced the Act to Parliament, is considered one of the defining legislative achievements of WE Gladstone’s famously reforming 1st Ministry (Gladstone was Prime Minister on four separate occasions, this legislation occured during his first term of office). The Act paved the way for schooling of all children in the United Kingdom between the ages of five and 12. It demonstrated a commitment to a provision for schooling on a national scale for the first time.”

“Whilst the adoption of this measure and a separate Act extended the same provisions to Scotland in 1872, further Acts were necessary throughout the 1880s and 1890s before the compulsory attendance age of 12 was established in 1899. But 1870 was the catalyst and many archives had school records dating from this era, some even pre-dating the Act.”

[Source National Archives blog: ]

UK Data Service guide: Depositing shareable survey data

Wednesday, July 2nd, 2014

“Those who own and manage large-scale surveys now have a compact and detailed guide to help them make their data more widely used by researchers.”

“The guide ‘Depositing shareable survey data’ was developed by a specialist team at the UK Data Service with extensive input from UK government departments, academic survey owners and survey producers.”

“The 16-page handbook takes the reader through the full data journey, from fieldwork planning to eventual user access. Correspondingly, all content is organised into five stages of the journey: Plan, Prepare, Negotiate, Deposit and Ingest. While the guide was specifically developed to support new depositors of large-scale surveys, the principles apply to a wide range of significant deposits.”

“The guide can feature as a useful check for owners and producers; it also suggests wording for commissioning tenders and briefs on considering any data sharing requirements. The aim is to encourage commissioning departments to include a standard paragraph requiring archiving with the UK Data Service in a timely manner and pointing to existing protocols for doing this.”

The guide is available free from the UK Data Service website at the link below.

[Source UK Data Service news: ]

Why ‘Alternative’ teenagers self-harm: exploring the link between non-suicidal self-injury, attempted suicide and adolescent identity

Monday, June 16th, 2014

“Around half (45.5%) of ‘Alternative’ teenagers self-injure and nearly 1 in 5 (17.2%) attempt suicide, according to research by scientists at the Medical Research Council (MRC)/Chief Scientist Office (CSO) (Scottish Government) Social and Public Health Sciences Unit (SPHSU), University of Glasgow and researchers from the University of Ulm, Germany.”

“This is the first research to look at why teenagers in certain subcultures are more likely to self-harm and how their motivations differ from other teenagers. Overwhelmingly, the reasons teenagers in this study gave to explain why they self-injure was to regulate distressing emotions and communicate this distress to friends and family. Earlier research found that the majority of adolescents who self-injure have friends who also self-injure and suggested that self-injury might be socially contagious. However, in this study only a minority of the teenagers were found to self-injure because they wanted to ‘feel more part of a group’.”

“The study, published in BMC Psychiatry, was conducted in Germany using 452 school pupils, aged 14-15 years. Pupils were asked to answer questions on how strongly they identified with different youth cultures, such as Alternative (Goth, Emo, Punk), Nerd (academic) or Jock (athletic). They were also asked about risk factors strongly linked to self-injury including, demographic (gender, immigration), social background (parent’s social and economic status) and victimisation (physical bullying and verbal harassment).”

“Researchers found teenagers with an Alternative identity were 3-4 times more likely to self-injure and 6-7 times more likely to attempt suicide than other teenagers, even after allowing for known risk factors. Identifying as an ‘Alternative teenager’ was a stronger predictor of self-injury or a suicide attempt than being repeatedly bullied.”

The article is published in BMC Psychiatry and can be read (Open Access) at:

[Source MRC news: ]

BBSRC Food, Nutrition & Health Dialogue report published

Tuesday, May 27th, 2014

“The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) has published a report on a public dialogue around food, nutrition and health which took place in March 2014.”
“The report Food, Nutrition & Health Challenges – BBSRC public dialogue final report details the findings of the project, which aimed to explore public views regarding food and health research, so that those views could be considered by BBSRC.”
“The report describes the outcomes from a two session dialogue commissioned by BBSRC involving members of the public. In facilitated discussions, participants were asked to consider why they felt particular ideas around food, nutrition and health were important, and the challenges they felt BBSRC should focus on.”
“The challenges identified by BBSRC’s Working Group on Food, Nutrition and Health were compared with those identified by dialogue participants. Overall, the public agreed with BBSRC’s priorities for research, but identified some areas that needed more attention. These will be addressed in BBSRC’s response to the dialogue, which will be published shortly.”

You can read the report at:

[Source BBSRC news: ]


Programmes from the Royal Albert Hall go online

Monday, May 19th, 2014

“A selection of programme covers from the Royal Albert Hall Archive in London have been made available online via the Visual Arts Data Service (VADS) for free use in learning, teaching and research at:

“The Royal Albert Hall Programme Collection consists of over 40,000 Programmes, from the very first Programme of the Opening ceremony in front of Queen Victoria in March 1871 to last night’s event! The RAH Programme collection covers a huge range of events, including not only the most obvious classical music concerts but sporting events, political rallies, trade shows, dance events and balls.”

“The Royal Albert Hall is currently cataloguing its archive collections to make them publicly available for the first time later this year, and further images will be added to the VADS image collection in due course.”

[Source VADS news: ]

Discovering Literature – British Library posts its greatest literary treasures online

Monday, May 19th, 2014

“The British Library has posted over 1000 of its greatest literary treasures online in a new website, Discovering Literature.”

“Beginning with the Romantic and Victorian periods, the British Library has posted handwritten manuscripts, diaries, letters and other materials belonging to iconic authors including Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, the Brontë sisters, Oscar Wilde, Percy Bysshe Shelley and William Wordsworth alongside original documents from the time they lived in, such as newspaper clippings, adverts and photographs, intended to bring their world – and their literary works – to life in a new way. The research suggests that this is a resource English teachers will find useful; 92% of English teachers say that students would benefit from being taught using material that brings to life the historical, social and political contexts in which classic literary texts were written.”

Discovering Literature website:

[Source British Library press release: ]

Independent review of the importance of engineering and the physical sciences to the health and life sciences.

Monday, May 12th, 2014

“The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) invited an independent review group chaired by Professor Patrick Maxwell, Regius Professor of Physic and Head of the School of Clinical Medicine at the University of Cambridge, to explore the relationship between engineering and the physical sciences and the health and life sciences.”

“The report concludes that engineering and physical sciences research, including mathematics, statistics and computer science, has played a major role in advancing health and life sciences, for example in biomaterials, microscopy, DNA sequencing and magnetic resonance imaging.”

“Academic and industry figures including Lord Darzi (Imperial College London), Professor Sir John Bell (University of Oxford) and Professor Patrick Vallance (GlaxoSmithKline) discuss the increasing importance for the future – from big data and genomics, to new drug discovery techniques, to medical devices for surgery.”

“The review group make several recommendations to ensure that institutions effectively support the increasing integration between disciplines. These include:

  • proposals to encourage interdisciplinary working
  • the role for challenge-driven research
  • the need for doctoral training in interdisciplinary research
  • incorporating engineering and physical sciences into the UK strategy for life sciences
  • regular reviews of activity at the interface between disciplines”

“EPSRC will be discussing the report and its recommendations with key partners such as the  Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), Medical Research Council (MRC), Cancer Research UK, the Wellcome Trust and other stakeholders over the coming months.”

The importance of engineering and physical sciences research to health and life sciences report can be accessed at:

[Source EPSRC news: ]

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