Seeking feedback for SWORD v2

By | September 20, 2010

Between 2007 and 2010 the JISC funded three iterations of the original SWORD project. These projects between them managed to create a new standard for repository deposit interoperability, a worldwide community of active users and developers, and a deeper understanding of the deposit interoperability needs of our repositories. From the initial funded implementations for DSpace, EPrints, Fedora and Intralibrary have spawned an ecosystem of SWORD servers and clients, including implementations for tools such as Microsoft Word, Drupal, Facebook, Moodle and OJS. At the recent Open Repositories 2010 conference in Madrid, much of the presented work involving repository deposit was making use of SWORD. The project was also named ‘The Most Innovative Project’ at the 2009 JISC Repositories and Preservation conference.

The original SWORD projects dealt with creating new repository resources by package deposit -­ a simple case which was at the root of its success but is also its key limitation. This method of deposit could be summed up as ‘fire and forget’. SWORD supports the deposit of the content, but once it is deposited, the user of a SWORD client is unable to track the progress of the item through any workflows, make alterations or updates to the content, or to delete it.

This proposed next version of SWORD will push the standard towards supporting the full repository deposit lifecycle by specifying and implementing update, retrieve and delete extensions to the specification. This will enable the repository to be integrated into a broader range of systems in the scholarly environment, by supporting an increased range of behaviours and use cases.

The first step in developing the SWORD v2 standard has been the development of a white paper by the SWORD v2 Technical Lead Richard Jones. Richard has worked as a repository developer for several universities including The University of Edinburgh, The University of Bergen, and Imperial College London. He is currently the Head of Repository Systems at Symplectic Ltd.

The white paper can be found at

Please read the white paper and provide comments. Comments can either be about the contents of the white paper itself, your experiences and thoughts of the SWORD v1 standard, or your ideas for SWORD v2. The feedback from the white paper will be used in the drafting of the v2 standard. Please contribute, all input welcome!

Category: SWORD v2 Tags:

About Stuart Lewis

Stuart Lewis works for The University of Auckland Library as their Digital Development Manager. He has played a part of all the past SWORD projects, initially by being the joint creator of the DSpace and Fedora implementations, but also by writing clients such as the Java web client, the PHP API, and the Facebook client. More recently he has contributed by creating the EasyDeposit SWORD client creation tookit, and for writing ‘The SWORD Course’ ( / that was first delivered at the Open Repositories 2010 conference.

Stuart blogs regularly about SWORD developments ( and has co-authored two papers concerning SWORD:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *