For Christine Stohn, senior

product manager at Ex Libris, recently acquired by ProQuest, ensuring accessibility among today’s deluge of data is a key challenge. As she highlights, undergraduates, postgraduates, researchers and librarians, with different needs, all want to access diverse content, such as supplementary material, blog posts and MOOCs. ‘The Discovery service shouldn’t be the end-game and I would probably now call this the Gateway,’ she says. ‘I’m no longer searching and finding something, I’m also getting access [to more diverse content].’ According to Stohn,

personalisation is a key part of discoverability, with personalised ranking available with its discovery interface, Primo. Here, results can be ranked based on user information, such

‘Discoverability continues to evolve and is only going to increase in importance’

as disciplines of interest and a preference for the most recent material.

In a vein similar to many in the industry, Stohn is looking to add a resource recommender – ProQuest’s Summon – to Primo, to increase accessibility. As Stohn points out, Summon includes a database recommender but is a web-scale discovery service designed to to give users with easy access to the most relevant content, alongside a library’s discovery system. What’s more, a citation trail tool will be included in the

18 Research Information JUNE/JULY 2016

latest Primo release, so users can track down other materials that either cite the article of interest, or indeed, are cited by it. ‘The user can move from one list to the next list and in doing so is learning more about the topic and collecting material, making discoverability a learning and exploring experience,’ says Stohn. ‘[This rationale] applies to Primo’s exploration tools, bX Recommender, and we are adding more exploration tools over time.’

The company is also in the process of launching projects to investigate the use of linked data and, following in the footsteps of other industry players, is looking at visualisation software to depict different types of data in new ways.

‘This isn’t about individual

features though,’ adds Stohn. ‘It’s important to cover all cornerstones of discoverability, including search and find, exploration and learning, and also personalisation.’

Likewise, for Kudos’ Rapple, discoverability continues to evolve and is only going to increase in importance for all in scholarly publishing. ‘[Only recently], it’s shifted from being very much about metadata distribution, website headers and search engine optimisation to being a more holistic concept that isn’t just managed within a technical or marketing team,’ she says. ‘There are now so many channels to increase discoverability, and everybody in the whole research process now plays a role here. Today, it’s so closely aligned with impact, it’s not something that people can ignore anymore.’


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