Investigation of challenges in academic institutional repositories: A survey of academic librarians

Soohyung Joo, Darra Hofman, Youngseek Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore the breadth of the challenges and issues facing institutional repositories in academic libraries, based on a survey of academic librarians. Particularly, this study covers the challenges and barriers related to data management facing institutional repositories. Design/methodology/approach: The study uses a survey method to identify the relative significance of major challenges facing institutional repositories across six dimensions, including: data, metadata, technological requirements, user needs, ethical concerns and administrative challenges. Findings: The results of the survey reveal that academic librarians identify limited resources, including insufficient budget and staff, as the major factor preventing the development and/or deployment of services in institutional repositories. The study also highlights crucial challenges in different dimensions of institutional repositories, including the sheer amount of data, institutional support for metadata creation and the sensitivity of data. Originality/value: This study is one of a few studies that comprehensively identified the variety of challenges that institutional repositories face in operating academic libraries with a focus on data management in institutional repositories. In this study, 37 types of challenges were identified in six dimensions of institutional repositories. More importantly, the significance of those challenges was assessed from the perspective of academic librarians involved in institutional repository services.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)525-548
Number of pages24
JournalLibrary Hi Tech
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 13 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited.


  • Academic libraries
  • Data preservation
  • Ethical issues
  • Institutional repositories
  • Library administration
  • Metadata

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Library and Information Sciences


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