Research Impact Challenge

This guide contains 10 activities for researchers to better understand and manage their online scholarly presence, as well as the impact and reach of their research.

Day 3: Preserve and Share your work with a Digital Repository

Welcome to Day 3 of the University Libraries Research Impact Challenge! Today we’ll explore how scholarly digital repositories can help you make all kinds of scholarly work—from article pre-prints to slide decks to syllabi—easier to preserve, share, discover, and cite.

Perhaps you’ve shared article pre-prints or other forms of scholarly work with your colleagues over social media or email, or posted them to your personal website. Using a digital repository can make the common activity of exchanging work with colleagues easier and more stable.

Not all repositories behave exactly the same way, but as a general rule, by depositing work in a repository, you’ll get:

  • A stable URL for the work that you can share with others or post to social media, your personal website, etc. This stable URL makes it easier for others to cite your work. You also won’t have to worry about broken links, or about migrating and re-posting your work to a new web page if you move to a new institution, or if your website moves to a new platform.
  • Indexing by Google and Google Scholar, which makes your work more discoverable by others
  • Some form of feedback about how the work has been used: how many views it has received, download counts, shares, etc.

There are many different scholarly repositories. Often they are focused on specific disciplines, such as mathematics or biology; or communities, such as members of the Modern Language Association or the University of Minnesota.

Today's challenge:

Choose a repository from the following list (or a different one that you know) and take some time to explore it. Find one item of interest in the repository that you'd like to read, use in your research or teaching, or share with colleagues

Key Scholarly Repositories

UMN Options:


University Digital Conservancy (UDC)

Data Repository for U of M (DRUM)

External Options:

Humanities Commons CORE repository

LIS Scholarship Archive

  • Who can deposit: Any library or information science scholar who is a registered Open Science Framework user
  • What you can deposit: “a broad range of scholarship, from [...] metadata to [...] manuscripts. We acknowledge that much of this scholarship happens outside the traditional realms of academia, including work that goes beyond the standard article or book chapter to oral histories, community works, code, data, and more”
  • More information/FAQ
  • Search, browse, and explore



Bonus challenge: Create an account and deposit a piece of your work in an appropriate repository!

What next? 

  • Check usage/download statistics for anything you’ve deposited to gather information about its use and impact.

  • Keep an eye out for any alerts from Google Scholar indicating that something you deposited has been indexed and added to your Google Scholar profile.      


Learn more: 

  • When depositing your scholarly work in a repository, it's a good idea to understand how copyright applies to you. Learn more about these issues:

  • The SHERPA/RoMEO database contains information about specific journal and publisher policies about posting pre-prints.
  • Repositories are one way to make scholarly content freely available online. Learn more about Open Access.


Prepare for the next challenge: 

Congratulations! You’ve completed the Day 3 challenge of exploring a digital repository for preserving and sharing your scholarly work!

Tired of online platforms yet? Join us tomorrow, for the Day 4 challenge, where we'll take an inventory of our academic social media use in order to prioritize and make strategic decisions about where to spend time and effort in the coming year. 

This material has been adapted from the University of Michigan research impact challenge LibGuide created by Rebecca Welzenback, January 15 2019 and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. 

Last Updated: Nov 22, 2021 1:40 PM