Technical Scope

In this document we describe the technical part of adding a new repository. For now we describe the SWORDv2 protocol, but we are not bound to this transmission form.


To some extend the SWORDv2 protocol is easy to use as it involes just some basic HTTP operations. We decided to use its packaging capability, because this way we can easily ship metadata and document at the same time.


We use the Metdata Encoding & Transmission Standard (METS) to ship our metadata and describe what is delivered. Most repositories are able to ingest a METS package.

We try to keep our METS as simple as possible. Currently we populate only dmdSec, amdSec/rightsMD, fileSec and structSec.

  • dmdSec contains the bibliographic metadata
  • amdSec/rightsMD contains information about the depositor, the license and additional Dissemin related information. You find the documentation in Dissemin Metadata.

We deliver two files per package:

  • mets.xml - containing the metadata
  • a_pdf_file.pdf - the document to be deposited. The name may vary as we ship the original filename from the user. You find the filename in structMap inside of mets.xml.

We set the following headers:

Content-Type: application/zip

If you require for your ingest a different packaging name or packaging format, please let us know.


Currently we create version 3.7. We populate as near as the definitions require as possible. You find below our mappings using XPath notation.

abstract => abstract
author => name[@type="personal"]namePart/given + family + name
author[orcid] => name/nameIdentifier[@type=orcid]
date => originInfo/dateIssued[@enconding="w3cdtf"] (YYYY-MM-DD)
ddc => classification[@authority="ddc"]
document type => genre
doi => identifier[@type="doi"]
essn => relatedItem/identifier[@type="eissn"]
issn => relatedItem/identifier[@type="issn"]
issue => relatedItem/part/detail[@type="issue"]/number
journal => relatedItem/titleInfo/title
language => language/languageTerm[@type="code"][@authority="rfc3066"]
pages => relatedItem/part/extent[@unit="pages"]/total or start + end
publisher => originInfo/publisher
title => titleInfo/title
volume => relatedItem/part/detail[@type="volume"]

Note that volume, issue and pages are often not arabic numbers, but may contain other literals. Although MODS does provide fields for declarations like No., Vol. or p. we do not use this, because our datasources don’t.

We ship the language as rfc3066 determined by langdetect and only if both conditions are satisfied:

  1. The abstract has a length of at least 256 letters (including whitespaces)
  2. langdetect gains a confidence of at least 50%

If we cannot determine any language, we omit the field.

We ship the ddc number as three-digit-number, i.e. filling up with leading zeros for numbers smaller than 99.

Dissemin Metadata

MODS does not completely fit our needs in terms of metadata. Thus we add our own metadata that extends the MODS metadata.

We ship the following data:

Data Explanation
authentication method The method of authentication. This is currently shibboleth and orcid.
name The first and last name of the depositor. Note that the depositor does not need to be a contributor of the publication.
email E-Mail address of the depositor in case you need to contact them.
orcid ORCID if the depositor has one.
is contributor true/false and states if the depositor is one of the contributors or if deposits on behalf
identical institution true/false and states if the depositors institution is identical with the institution of the repository.
license The license. Most likely Creative Commons, but different licenses are possible. We happily add new licenses for your repository. We deliver the name and if existing URI and a transmit id.
embargoDate The publication must not be published before this date. It may be published on this date.
SHERPA/RomeoID ID of the journal from SHERPA/RoMEO. Using their API or web interface you can quickly obtain publishers conditions.
DisseminID This ID refers to the publication in Dissemin. This ID is not persistent. The reason is the internal data model: Merging and unmerging papers might create or delete primary keys in the database. For a ‘short’ period of time, this id will definetely be valid. You can use the DOI shipped in the bibliographic metadata to get back to the publication in Dissemin.

If you need more information for your workflow, please contact us. We can add additional fields.

You can find our schema for download in Version 1.0.

Deposit Receipt

Dissemin expects that your repository returns a SWORDv2 deposit receipt, which is optional in the SWORDv2 standard. Please make sure that it contains a splash url, i.e. the landing page of the deposited document for the user. Your deposit receipt shall look like:

<?xml version="1.0"?>
<entry xmlns="">
    <link rel="alternate" href=""/>

Where href contains of course the splash url of the deposited item.

Currently Dissemin will extract the identifier from the splash url.

Examples and Scripts

To support you in your local implementation we have some examples and scripts.


The examples are authentic, i.e. they are created with Dissemin and represent how the metadata documents will loke like. For earch document type there is one or more example. They cover different cases like dewey decimal class or embargo.

Upload scripts

You can download our script for testing your implementations. The HTTP-request is identical to that in Dissemin. You find usage instructions in the inside of the packaging.

Update Deposit Status

Unless a document is directly published in a repository, the internal publication status inside Dissemin will be pending.

Dissemin does know the following status:

('failed', _('Failed')), # we failed to deposit the paper
('pending', _('Pending publication')), # the deposit has been submitted but is not publicly visible yet
('embargoed', _('Embargo')), # the publication will be published, but only after a certain date
('published', _('Published')), # the deposit is visible on the repo
('refused', _('Refused by the repository')),
('deleted', _('Deleted')), # deleted by the repository

In order to keep the status up to date and inform the user, when his publication is freely available, we ask the repository about the status on a daily basis as long as the status is pending. This requires some extra work as we cannot use OAI-PMH, as this won’t inform us about declined deposits or embargos.

Given an endpoint, put a little script that does the job. From the SWORDv2 response we extract the entry id in your repository and pass that id as GET-parameter, like so


As response we expect simple JSON containing status, publication_date, pdf_url where status is one of pending, embargoes, published, refused. In case of embargoed and published we like to have publication date, i.e. when the resource is publicly available, as YYYY-MM-DD and the direct link to the pdf if possible. Below we have a simple example.

    "status" : "published",
    "publication_date" : "2020-03-12",
    "pdf_url" : ""

We do not have plans to support any batch processing at the moment.

Repository Helpers

We cannot directly support for necessary implementations or configurations on the repository that is going to be connected.

But we like to support any repository administrator with at least some documentation.

EPrints 3

EPrints 3 has been successfully be connected to Dissemin.

Zaharina Stoynova from ULB Darmstadt has worked on a plugin to ingest Dissemins metadata. As it is probably not possible to use it directly, please make the necessary changes as you require.

The package consists of two files:


The first file deals with some general things like data integrity and ingests the Dissemin metadata, while the other file deals with the MODS metadata itself.