Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations

The Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations (NDLTD) is an international organization that promotes creation, access to, and preservation of electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs) from academic institutions around the world. The NDLTD Union Catalog provides access to over a million ETDs.

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The Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations (NDLTD) is a collaborative effort of universities around the world to promote creating, archiving, distributing and accessing Electronic Theses and Dissertations (ETDs). Since its inception in 1996, over a hundred universities have joined the initiative, underscoring the importance institutions place on training their graduates in the emerging forms of digital publishing and information access. The outreach and training mission of NDLTD is an ongoing project so in this article we report on the current status of membership and support activities. Recent research has focused on creating a union database that will provide a means to search and retrieve ETDs from the combined collections of NDLTD member institutions. The Virtua system developed by VTLS will serve as the heart of this union database. In order to bridge the gap between the existing distributed institutional archives and a unified collection of ETDs, we have developed a metadata standard especially suited to ETDs - this is then used by partner sites to export their freely-available metadata using the Metadata Harvesting Protocol of the Open Archives Initiative. We also link name authority information into the metadata records to support unique identification of authors and others associated with the works. Additional research efforts include advanced search mechanisms, semantic interoperability, the design and development of multi- and cross-lingual search systems, and software modules that support the development of higher-level services to aid researchers in seeking relevant ETDs.


Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations - Ndltd

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Introduction
Since the early days of computing, tools have supported the creation of documents as well as access to ever-growing collections of electronic information. This situation has become widely understood as a result of word-processing programs - such as Microsoft Word - and the Web, respectively. The Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations (NDLTD) is an initiative aiming at harnessing these trends to promote education and research and to change the future of scholarly publishing.