Some Suggested Improvements to RoMEO - Oct.2009
Accommodate multilingual publisher names
Some publishers who work in two or more languages have different versions of their name for each language (e.g. Canadian publishers often have both English and French names). Romeo currently does not handle these well, hence the need for improvement.
Revise or Replace the current colour scheme (Green, Yellow, Blue and White)
The Romeo colour scheme has stimulated much discussion over the years. The current colours are assigned according a publisher's differing archiving policies for pre-prints and post-prints - either no archiving, pre-print archiving, post-print archiving or archiving both; giving four logical states. As publishers conditions increase in complexity is a simple characterisation like the colours still useful?
Improve the standardisation of the phrases used in publisher entries
Phrases and descriptions in Romeo have evolved over time, resulting in variations. We would like to reduce the amount of variation. This should be reduce any confusion, and facilitate the production of non-English language versions of Romeo
Implement the new terminology for document versions (e.g. http://www.lse.ac.uk/versions)
Many people have found the terms preprint and 'post-print' unclear and confusing (although we do provide explanations). A number of projects, such as the Versions project, have investigated alternative nomenclature, and we think it would advantageous to change our terminology in line with their recommendations - 'Submitted version', and 'Accepted version' respectively.
Add journal lists for each Publisher in Romeo
Romeo is currently in process of compiling its own database of journals and their publishers, in order to reduce our reliance on third party databases. A spin off from this exercise is that would be able to provide lists of journals by publisher, if there is a demand for such lists.
Maintain and optionally display the history of policy changes
Romeo records are dynamic. If a publisher changes its archiving policies, Romeo changes accordingly, but at the moment we do not keep an electronic copy of the policy before it was changed. (We do maintain paper records.) The aim of this suggestion is to retain an electronic history of policy changes. Normally users would see the current policy, but there would be an option to display earlier policies.
Add a field for the publishers' country/countries
This would enable certain countries to generate special Romeo lists for their native publishers.
Display journal level exceptions to a publishers' general policy
Larger publishers tend to have a single archiving policy for all their titles. However, some titles may have different policies, particularly if the journal is being published on behalf of a learned society that has a different approach to open access. Romeo currently cannot always handle these exceptions, and we wish to take steps to improve this situation.
Create special versions of Romeo adapted to specific funders
Wherever possible, Romeo shows whether or not a publisher's policies are compliant with research funding agencies' mandates for open access. It would be possible to create special versions of Romeo customised to the requirements of particular funders, perhaps highlighting important policies and/or omitting unrequired information.
Add an FAQ page
This is something that has been requested. Questions could relate to Romeo workflows, definitions, benefits, etc.
Provide multilingual interfaces and data
Several partner organisations have created non-English versions of Romeo using our data. These include versions in German, Spanish and Japanese. This suggestion would add the translations into the core Romeo database, and extend the service to other languages.
Create a Publishers' Open Access Policy Tool to assist in creating clear policies
It is often difficult to determine publishers' archiving policies, due to differing interpretations of preprint and post-print, and different levels of understanding of the principles and implications of open access. As Romeo improves the standardisation of its phrases, it may be possible to create an Open Access Policy Tool working in a similar fashion to the OpenDOAR Policies Tool. This would help publishers to formulate policies that satisfy the requirements of authors, funding agencies, and their own interests.