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DCAT Update: Collaborating on New DSpace Features

Ithaca, NY The success of any open-source project lies with the community contributing its collective energy, knowledge, enthusiasm, and effort. In the DSpace community valuable contributions come not just from our numerous volunteer developers and committers, but also a group known as the DSpace Community Advisory Team or DCAT. The primary goals of DCAT are to help review and facilitate community discussions about new feature requests and to provide support to the DSpace committer group in producing software releases.
New Feature Review
Since the beginning of the year, DCAT has held detailed discussions on a half dozen new feature requests from JIRA. The discussions started asynchronously on the DCAT Discussion Forum, where the new feature requests were discussed and specific requirements outlined. DCAT members also recorded their vote on the priority level and how broadly they believed the feature would appeal to the larger community. Once a request was determined to be high priority/broad appeal, there would also be a discussion about it in one of the weekly developer meetings.  Additional DCAT status discussions occurred during the monthly DCAT meetings, which Robin Taylor, the 1. 8 Release Coordinator, and Tim Donohue, DSpace Tech Lead attended.
DCAT/Committers/Developers 1.8 Collaboration
Thanks to everyone’s efforts, particularly the committers and developers, we are very pleased to announce that the DCAT/DSpace developer collaboration will yield fruits in the upcoming DSpace 1.8 release. Three new features are, in part, a result of this collaboration:

  • DS-749 Reordering of bitstreams, contributed by Kevin Van de Velde from @mire, DCAT discussion leader  Jennifer Laherty from Indiana University
  • DS-638 Enable virus checking during submission, contributed by Robin Taylor from the University of Edinburgh, DCAT discussion leader Elin Stangeland from Cambridge University Library

Additionally, at the request of the committers, DCAT members also consulted on the improvements to the bulk CSV editing (the feature also known as Batch Metadata Editing).

  • DS-811 Delete/withdraw items via bulk CSV editing, contributed by Stuart Lewis from the University of Auckland, feedback provided by DCAT members

For more information about these and other new features in 1.8 please visit
Other DCAT Efforts
DCAT has also been working on a community survey to find out what type of improvements users would like to see for metadata support in DSpace.  The survey will mark the beginning of the DCAT/committer effort to evolve the types of metadata schemas available as well as ease customization. The community metadata survey will be sent out in the next few weeks and will be used to inform efforts for improvements on future releases of DSpace.
For more information about DCAT, please visit the wiki. If you would like to learn more about how to get involved, please contact Valorie Hollister at