Shodhganga : a National Repository of Indian Electronics Theses and Dissertations

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Registration Name : eINDIA2011/AN/181
Project Category : digitalLEARNING::Best ICT Enabled Higher Education Institute of the Year
Project Name : Shodhganga : a National Repository of Indian Electronics Theses and Dissertations

Details of Applicant
Name : Manoj Kumar. K
Address : Near Gujarat University Guest House, PB No. 4116, Navragpura PO, Ahmedabad, Gujarat – 380 009.
City : Ahmedabad
State : Gujarat
Country : INDIA
Zip Code : 380009

Details of Project/Implementing Agency
Name of Organisation : INFLIBNET Centre, (Information and Library Network Centre, an IUC of University Grants Commission) Govt. of India
Address : Near Gujarat University Guest House, PB No. 4116, ,Navragpura PO, Ahmedabad, ,Gujarat – 380 009.
City : Ahmedabad
State : Gujarat
Country : INDIA
Zip Code : 380 009
Name of the head of Organisation : Dr. Jagdish Arora
Website :

Brief description of the programme/project/Initiative :
The project is first in India as a National Repository of Electronic Theses Dissertations (ETD) wherein all universities in India are expected to join after a Gazette notification issued by UGC. Universities are signing MoU with the INFLIBNET Centre to join Shodhganga project by giving a commitment for digitisation of old theses as well as by hosting their current theses in the repository. The universities that sign-up MoU with the INFLIBNET Centre are given incentives in terms of funds for digitisation of old theses as well as for setting up of ETD Labs. Besides, universities also get access to an anti-plagiarism software tool that detect plagiarism and thereby help in improving quality of theses. The project is unique to motivate universities and research scholars for digitisation of theses and online submission of theses by research scholars. The project would grow as more and more theses are submitted to it, platform is improved to provide better search and discovery experience.

Why was the project started :
To encouraging and support Open Access to publically-funded research by becoming a part of an International movement on ETDs led by NTLTD and Open access Initiatives. To deter plagiarism in Theses submitted to universities.

Objective :
Theses and dissertations are known to be the rich and unique source of information, often the only source of research work that does not find its way into various publication channels. Theses and dissertations remain an un-tapped and under-utilized asset, leading to unnecessary duplication and repetition that, in effect, is the anti-theses of research and wastage of huge resources, both human and financial. The UGC Notification (Minimum Standards & Procedure for Award of M.Phil. / Ph.D Degree, Regulation, 2009) dated 1st June 2009 mandates submission of electronic version of theses and dissertations by the researchers in universities with an aim to facilitate open access to Indian theses and dissertation to the academic community world-wide. Online availability of electronic theses through centrally-maintained digital repositories, will not only ensure easy access and archiving of Indian doctoral theses but will also help in raising the standard and quality of research. This would overcome serious problem of duplication of research and poor quality resulting from the “poor visibility” and the “unseen” factor in research output. The responsibility of hosting, maintaining and making the digital repository of Indian Electronic Theses and Dissertation, accessible to all institutions and universities, is assigned to the INFLIBNET Centre. “Shodhganga” is a national digital repository of Indian Electronic Theses and Dissertations to address this issue.

Target group : Universities (525 plus as on date)
Geographical reach : India
Date from which the project became operational : 20 May 2010
Is the Project still operational : YES

10 points that make the programme/project innovative?

  1. Shodhganga@INFLIBNET aims at encouraging and supporting Open Access to publically-funded research.
  2. Part of an International movement on ETDs led by NTLTD and Open access Initiatives.
  3. National Project which makes the research result available online for public access by publishing theses in open access based on UGC mandate via gazette notification The UGC Notification (Minimum Standards & Procedure for Award of M.Phil./ Ph.D Degree, Regulation, 2009) dated 1st June 2009.
  4. First National Repository of Theses and Dissertation for all Indian Universities (About 525 universities)
  5. UGCs National Scheme for digitisation of Back volumes of theses for all universities.
  6. Provision for subscription to anti-plagiarism software to participating universities for detection of plagiarism in theses or research output.
  7. Research scholars and research supervisor can submit theses online
  8. Knowledge discovery in Shodhganga through semantic web based visual browser, searching and browsing via external reference, such as a Handles, searching for one or more keywords in metadata or extracted full-text , browsing though title, author, date or subject indices, and Semantic Visual Browser
  9. Intuitive and Easy submission process through tailor-made ingestion interface.
  10. Participation of research scholars, supervisors, librarians, teachers and university authorities in building the national repository.

List the 5 achievements of the programme/project?

  1. Appreciation received from the nation and international agencies and universities.
  2. Well received by academic community and 43 universities came forward in an year to sign the MoU to join the project.
  3. Universities started signing MoU with INFLIBNET for joining the project and voluntary contribution of soft copies of theses crossed 2400 as on date and it is growing.
  4. Short-listed for Manthan Digital Inclusion Award and the final process is going on.
  5. Though there is no mandate for private universities to join the project, such universities came forward to sign the MoU and join Shodhganga voluntarily.

List the 5 key challenges faced while implementing the programme/project/initiative

  1. Research scholars and supervisors were reluctant to submit their research result voluntarily initially. (Solution:Approached UGC to make notification for universities for depositing a copy in a central repository and publish it in gazette. Also instruct universities to follow common guidelines for PhD and MPhil.)
  2. Lack of awareness to publish in open access mode was another bottleneck. (Solution: Posters and brochures prepared about Shodhganga. Awareness programmes conducted in various regions)
  3. Lack of technical know-how about common standard format and conversion to a unique standard was another challenge. (Solution: Uniform International standards adopted such as Dublin core metadata, OAI-PMH etc. Training Programmes are arranged in various universities. Tutorials and Guidelines are published on website )
  4. Many Universities do not take initiative for digitisation. (Solution: Incentives in terms of one time grants are recommended to proactive universities who actively participate in Shodhganga project. Universities gets funds for Digitisation and ETD Lab in addition to subscription to Anti Plagiarism software.)
  5. Getting timely response from universities is a bottleneck. Different universities are following multi format and different style for PhD thesis, which, in turn, restricts implementation of uniform standards. Theses in regional languages have not been uploaded yet in its native format on Shodhganga. Unicode based solution for regional language implementation

List the 5 points how can the programme serve as a model that can be replicated or adapted by others?

  1. Besides Central repository, Shodhganga supplements Distributed Institutional Repositories (IRs). University can set-up their own IRs which can also be harvested in Shodhganga. This will facilitate single search in all theses submitted at various universities.
  2. Use of Open Source software used in Shodhganga can be adopted by any Institutions or universities.
  3. Free support for configuration and Installation of IR software by INFLIBNET Centre.
  4. User friendly software, scalable to accommodate infinite number of records.
  5. IR application likely to be available as a cloud application in NME-ICT/NKN network which is free for academic institutions.

List 5 points to elaborate on the scalability of the programme/project/initiative

  1. Adoption of International Standards such as Dublin Core. OAIPMH etc.
  2. Implementation based on Open Source software such as DSpace, Postgres, Tomcat which is scalable
  3. Training University technical person to implement in their universities
  4. Servers capable of handling next 10 years data from universities
  5. INFLIBNET target to sign-up with around 150 universities by the end of 2012 and get 10,000 full-text theses hosted into Shodhganga. Target is to sign-up with all universities in India by 2015 and get 50,000 full-text theses hosted on Shodhganga.

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One Response to Shodhganga : a National Repository of Indian Electronics Theses and Dissertations

  1. JAYAPRAKASH.C.B says:

    very good