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Integration metadata from various systems which are internal to an institution

Integration collection records, party records and activity records which may be external to an institution

Metadata Store Solutions

Metadata Feed/Harvest/Publish

Project Members:

Vladimir Bubalo (

Noel Valenti (

ANDS Contact:

Alan Glixman (

Project Status:


Institutional Metadata Stores

Macquarie University

Project Description

Prior to this project, there was no comprehensive way for researchers at Macquarie University to describe research data collections and make them discoverable. This project established a systematic solution for management of research data collection descriptors. By introduction of ReDBox/Mint solution and integration with University's sources of truth for parties and activities, we were able to achieve streamlined way to describe research data collections, link parties, activities and services to collection descriptors and publish the metadata into ResearchOnline (Macquarie University's institutional repository) and Research Data Australia.

Integration with institutional systems enables us to create triggers at various points in University research processes which can help us in automating the way information about research data collections is collected. We have created workflows corresponding to stages in research lifecycle ensuring that we are alerted at points where research data may be created (applying for storage, ethics and grants). We have created an online version of Data Management Plan which will be a source of initial metadata for collection records. This would mean that the researcher enters information only once in one of the University systems and it then flows into a collection record.

High Level Software Functionality:


Standard Redbox functionality such as:
1. Provide mechanisms for the storage and management of collection, party, service and activity records, including management of record relationship types.
2. Provide mechanisms for the Research Portfolio to have an administrative view of published collection, party, service and activity records.
3. Provide mechanisms for the validation of party records against an institutional name authority service, with corrections and additions incorporated into the party record managed within the metadata store.
4. Provide mechanisms for the validation of activity records against internal (Research Portfolio and HR) and external (ARC and NHMRC) sources of truth, with corrections and additions from sources of truth incorporated into locally managed activity records.
5. Provide mechanisms for making RIF-CS research data metadata available to RDA.

Optional Extra Functionality Developed

>> .xml Ingestor to Mint plugin: This plugin is used to generate an XML output file for RIF-CS People, Group and Activity data that will be subsequently input into the Mint. It will read all the elements in an CSV data source file and build an XML identifier for them based on their path - which comprises of an element name and the value of attribute 'type' if there (and sometimes other necessary info if needed).

>> LDAP authentication: Macquarie University uses Active Directory for authentication that does not support anonymous bind. The LDAP authentication plug-in is used both for MINT and ReDBox and supports authentication and authorisation roles directly. Developed to support direct bind, bind search compare and bind search bind methods of authentication the plug-in may be useful to any organisation using Active Directory and implementing MINT and ReDBox.

>> ReDBox collection record cloning function: The Cloning plug-in has been developed to help users easily create a similar record based on a different data set that only requires minor edits to the metadata (eg a change in year for the same type of readings) or easily create metadata to describe a new version of underlying data.

>> online Data Management Plan (ResearchMaster): The online Data Management Plan has been implemented in ResearchMaster and is integrated into the Research Office workflow associated with the establishment of a research grant. The changes actually consist of configuration files that are used by the ResearchMaster eForms module. Macquarie are happy to share their work however it would only be useful to another organisation if they were using ResearchMaster eForms and had the same workflow as Macquarie University. The configuration data, form format and form questions are available on request.