At the heart of meeting institutional needs for managing digital content is the need to understand the different activities that the content goes through, from planning and creation through to disposal or preservation. Digital content is created using a variety of authoring tools. Once created the content is often stored somewhere different, made accessible in possibly more than one way, altered as required, and then moved for deletion or preservation at an appropriate point. Different systems can be involved at different points: one of these may be a repository. To embed repositories in the content lifecycle, and prevent them becoming yet another content silo within the institution, they thus need to be integrated with other systems that support other parts of this lifecycle. In this way the content can be moved between systems as required, minimising the constraints of any one system. The JISC-funded CLIF (Content Lifecycle Integration Framework) project, which concluded in March 2011, was a joint venture between Library and Learning Innovation (LLI) at the University of Hull and the Centre for e-Research (CeRch) at King’s College London. It undertook an extensive literature review and worked with creators of digital content at the two host institutions to understand how they would like to deal with the interaction of the authoring, collaboration and delivery of materials using three systems used within Higher Education institutions that are targeted at the management of digital content from different perspectives and for different purposes: the Fedora Commons repository software, Microsoft SharePoint, and the virtual learning environment, Sakai. Each of these systems addresses a range of lifecycle stages in the functionality provided; yet they were not designed to encompass the whole lifecycle. Armed with this background information, the project team went on to design and produce software that would allow the transfer of digital content between the systems to meet lifecycle requirements: Fedora and SharePoint, on the one hand, Fedora and Sakai on the other. The CLIF software has been designed to try and allow the maximum flexibility in how and when users can transfer material from one system to another, integrating the tools in such a way that they seem to be natural extensions of the basic systems. This open source software is available for others to investigate and work with. This article draws on several of the pieces of documentation produced by the project.
Awre, C., Green, R., & Waddington, S. (in press). The CLIF Project : the repository as part of a content lifecycle. Ariadne,