Introduction to Research & Resources

The Library & Learning Centre and Culture & Information directorate supports learning, teaching, and research activities across the University of Dundee’s ten Schools and all their diverse disciplines. Within our LLC&CI directorate, the Research and Resources Division contributes by managing a complex array of licenses, software, services, physical and electronic resources.

This work is reliant on a group of experienced staff with a vast and varied set of skills and knowledge. More than anyone, I get to hear from them all about news in the sector, updates from working groups, conference highlights, insights from data and statistics, changes in policy, and the day-to-day hurdles that crop up in the publishing and provision of scholarly communications.

The Research & Resources teams value the opportunity to be part of wider academic conversation with staff and students, and to learn from you all directly. This new blog is our way of making more of our own scholarly administration visible to everyone, trusting that it will be of interest and relevance to all who rely on the end results of the work.

To give a flavour of the nature and scale of the work of the R&R Teams:


We are responsible for the acquisition of all online journals, book collections, image collections, video collections, individual print and ebooks for the University Libraries (Main Library, DJCAD, Ninewells and Kirkcaldy)


We manage half a million print resources and even more online books, with more than 2 million chapters read online each academic year. More than half of book purchasing is now driven by module Resource Lists and since 2014 students have been able to make direct requests for books to be purchased for them. The Leisure Reading Collection was awarded an Honorary Graduates Award in 2019.


We subscribe to more than 70k ejournal titles and more than 1.5million full text articles are downloaded each year through our subscriptions. Large publishers like Elsevier, Wiley, Taylor & Francis, Sage, and Springer Nature are dominant in journal publishing, and our key database products include Scopus & Web of Science (general indexes), LinkedIn Learning (educational videos), and Digimap collections (mapping resources).

Negotiations and Licensing

We contribute to the Scottish SHEDL purchasing consortium and use deals and licences arranged by JISC collections to purchase collections of journals and books at advantageous pricing and terms for the HE sector. Negotiations increasingly aim to support Open Access developments and constrain publisher charges, working under Scottish APUC framework terms, where significant discounts over publisher list prices have been secured.

Strategy and Policy

We lead the University Research Office collaborative activities, report into the Senate Committees for Learning & Teaching and Research & Knowledge Exchange, and are represented on the REF Steering Group and Main Panels, the Doctoral Academy Board, Research Policy & Governance Sub-Committee, Research Ethics Committee and the Public Engagement Forum. We contribute to many external groups in our sector, like the UK Pure User group, Scottish Open Access Group, SCURL and SHEDL. We have led the development of Open Research strategy at UoD, and written policies for Open Access, Data Management, Publications and Reading Lists.

Digital Library Services

We are responsible for UoD’s copyright CLA license and run a digitisation service to make print content available for use in online and blended learning. We administer key online services including the Library Management System and Library Search system, Resource List service, and the Discovery Research Portal. We administer ORCID IDs for researchers, Altmetric services, ResearchFish submissions and contribute data for the Annual Research Review.

Advocacy, Liaison, Support

We receive over 300 unique enquiries per week from researchers and attend all School Research Committees, provide induction material and support to new staff on arrival, contribute to the OPD training and development programme, and run School-based and drop-in training sessions.


We manage the bibliographic components of the REF, including outputs recording, open access compliance, physical evidence of non-textual outputs and supporting material for impact case studies and environment statements. Around 1200 outputs are validated and compliance checked annually.

Open Research

We have administered up to £500k of central Open Access funds annually, comprising of RCUK block grants, COAF block grants and an institutional fund. We are monitoring the changes Plan S is bringing through Transitional Agreements for Read and Publish, and the COAF block grant has ended with funders now opting for different ways of supporting their mandates for OA publishing. We report on compliance with OA policies to funders on behalf of the institution.


We are responsible for capturing the research outputs of the University with over 42k validated outputs held in Discovery, along with 6k details of associated activities, press and awards, related to public engagement and impact. It the repository for PGR theses and a key part of the submission workflow. It is the central repository for information about data sets, as mandated in UoD’s Data Management Policy, and datasets can be issued DOIs.

What have I left out? So much! It is impossible to capture in one post the full spectrum of their skills and the nuances of their knowledge, which is why I am handing over to everyone else and asking that they blog about new scholarly resources, updates from meetings and conferences in the sector, analysis of policy changes, highlights from our collections, insights from data, and new features in our online services.

Please let us know what else you want to hear about, and do get in touch to discuss anything you read about.

Hannah Whaley, Library & Learning Centre Assistant Director (Research & Resources)


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