Altmetrics and analytics for digital special collections and institutional repositories

This white paper describes uses for usage statistics, altmetrics, and other quantitative and qualitative impact metrics in the context of services for digital special collections (DSCs) and institutional repositories (IRs) stewarded by academic libraries. First, we articulate a problem statement, which describes the current state of metrics. We then outline recommendations for how libraries can leverage usage statistics and altmetrics to measure the value of their IR and digital special collections and prove their worth to stakeholders. Finally, we discuss further work related to retroactively implementing metrics into existing digital repositories.


The authors wish to thank the DLF Interest Group on Digital Library Assessment, who provided extensive peer review on the recommendations made in this white paper.