We invite OR2016 attendees to take an active role in answering “How can repositories make the lives of academics easier?”.

Consider the lives of Academics, and the multiple ways in which they interact with their Scholarly Communication Digital Infrastructure. Where are the points of friction? Is there anything that we aren’t doing? What would make old-school Professor Smith happy? How about Priscilla the Postgraduate, who’s grown up connected to Social Media and finds it all a bit clunky? Are there any things we could be doing for this community of stakeholders that we currently aren’t?

The challenge is open to all conference attendees, and presentations will be made to the conference during a session from 2-3:30pm on Thursday afternoon. Ideas will be judged using the following criteria:

  • The value of the idea to academics (we will have academics on the judging panel).
  • How likely it is to be built.
  • The response from the audience.
  • Your team’s make-up (including bonus points for Challenge newbees)

Please see this year’s scoresheet for more information

The Ideas Challenge Social on Monday evening at the Pavilion Bar affords a good opportunity to meet your fellow delegates, discuss your ideas and form teams. We have made the submission deadline as late as possible to facilitate any ideas that form during the conference.

Entries must be submitted at http://tinyurl.com/or16challenge by 1pm on Thursday, June 16th.

Prizes will be awarded in the closing plenary session on Thursday afternoon, but more importantly you have the opportunity to join the glorious ranks of Open Repositories Challenge Winners. Thank you to the Digital Preservation Coalition for their generous donation of prizes.

Get talking right away on Twitter using the hashtag #OR16Challenge

Ideas Challenge Rules


  • A team must include at least two people
  • No person may be in more than one team
  • The majority of team-members must be present at OR2016
  • Only one entry per team

Ideas and Presentations

  • Ideas must be the work of the team.
  • Presentations should consist of four slides only, outlining:
    1. Who you are: team members and institutions
    2. What the problem is and who the problem affects
    3. What the solution is and what specific technologies could be used
    4. A one-slide mock-up of the solution
  • Presentation slides should be rough-and-ready
  • High production values are actively discouraged

Slides must be complete and submitted before 1pm on Thursday, June 16th using the online entry form at http://tinyurl.com/or16challenge. No code should be written, though your presentation should include which specific technologies could be used to implement the idea.

Judging and Prizes

  • Ideas will be presented at 2:00-3:30pm on Thursday, June 16th to the conference and a panel of judges
  • Ideas will be evaluated against the scoresheet
  • Winners will be announced at the closing plenary session, 4:00-5:30pm Thursday
  • Small prizes will be awarded to the team members of winning ideas
  • Only team members present at the closing plenary session may receive prizes

For More Information

For inquiries, please contact the Developer Track Co-Chairs, Adam Field and Claire Knowles at adam.field[AT]jisc.ac.uk and claire.knowles[AT]ed.ac.uk. They will be around during the conference or you can leave a message at the Ideas Challenge table in the exhibitor’s area.

Developer Track Co-chairs:

Adam Field,
SHERPA services analyst developer,

Claire Knowles,
Library Digital Development Manager,
University of Edinburgh