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This is a case study of the implementation of an institutional repository (IR). It is written for academic librarians who are looking for a primer on how to create an IR for their campus. Based upon Marshall University’s research and experience with this process, we present the essential elements needed to construct an institutional repository. Policies and procedures are provided that offer guidelines and checklists to follow for a successful ramp up and launch. A discussion about the value of an IR is followed by ways to secure funding and to implement a basic system that can be scaled up over time. This article mimics the scalable approach to IR implementation by starting with a discussion of the essentials, then addressing more complex IR functions. The investigation and planning stages of IR implementation can take a long time. Marshall University (MU) took (? Months) from the start of the process until the first items placed into the IR went public. It is the intention of this paper to simplify and speed the process for others.

Libraries have always collected information from a worldwide marketplace and have disseminated these resources locally. The IR has created a new function for the library by making it practical to acquire locally developed resources and to disseminate them freely worldwide. The institutional repository has altered the traditional role of librarians by empowering us to respond in new ways to the challenges of a new century. This suggests a broader set of implications for the future usefulness and relevancy of the IR as doors open to new partnerships that will strengthen the university and the library’s place within it.