By: Susan Wishnetsky, Assistant Collections Librarian
Do you have conference materials stored, unused and neglected on your hard drive? Perhaps a slideshow you presented in a conference session? A copy of a poster you displayed? The text of a speech or lecture you delivered?
DigitalHub, the institutional repository for Northwestern Medicine, can host a wide variety of faculty scholarly outputs, not just articles and datasets. Whether the material is old or new, posting your conference output to DigitalHub helps to preserve the history of scholarship at Northwestern Medicine, while making your work more discoverable and enhancing your scholarly profile. Materials in DigitalHub receive persistent, unique identifiers (DOIs) for reliable use in citations, and descriptive metadata to ensure discoverability by search engines such as Google. Access metrics -- data on the numbers of views and downloads of your deposited works -- are also provided.
If your conference publishes its proceedings, you may be concerned about copyright issues. Most conferences do not require a copyright transfer for session materials, such as posters and slides, but it is advisable to contact the conference organizers to make sure.
Perhaps you plan to publish an article utilizing or based upon your conference materials. During the article submission process, you will need to disclose any related material -- posters, preprints, abstracts, slides, etc. -- that has been made publicly available, including in an institutional repository. Publishers generally do allow prior posting of posters or other images in an article, but it is always advisable to consult the publisher’s website to find out their policies, and contact them directly to deal with any questions or concerns.
Even if your conference or publisher doesn't permit your materials to be openly available, or requires an embargo period before they may be publicly accessed, you can still store and preserve your material in DigitalHub by using the "private" or "NU only" setting, which prevents the material from being viewed by the public at large. The setting can easily be changed to make the material public at a later date.
If you have other questions or need help in finding out whether your conference output can be posted, please submit your questions or concerns to the DigitalHub team using DigitalHub's contact form, send an e-mail to DigitalHub@northwestern.edu, or contact your liaison librarian.
Updated: March 5, 2020