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VIRTA Publication Information Service

In Finland, an advanced decentralized solution to integrate institutional data at the national level, the VIRTA Publication Information Service, was launched in the spring 2016. VIRTA is a data warehouse, ”a data hub” compiling bibliographic information annually of all scientific publications from 54 organizations using different local solutions for publication data collection, such as commercial Current Research Information Systems (CRIS), self-made publication registers, institutional publication repositories and e-forms.

VIRTA makes up-to-date metadata from research institutions available for other services and produce comprehensive and comparative information on publishing activity both nationally and institutionally. The publication metadata can be transferred to research funders, publication or data repositories, infrastructure services, or any other service used by researchers.


Applying Finnish concept to European level?

Adaptation of the VIRTA concept would establish a convenient and cost-efficient way for building a European Publication Information Serviceto which any European country or single organization would be able to provide its own publication data.

The planned European Research Information Service would provide a complete overview on European research publications including all types of scholarly publications and potentially other research outcomes in the future as well. Any country or institution would be able to join despite its own system architecture.

The information would also be usable in various processes such as researchers’ CV’s, funding applications, research evaluations, research administration, science policy planning, decision making, research and information retrieval. The data can be used in various digital services, for example, in importing publications to funding organizations reporting systems.

The European Research Information Service would provide an online infrastructure for research literature available for anyone through the public portal. The metadata of open access publications should always include links to full texts and thus provide a gateway to the actual research.


titleMore info

VIRTA Publication Information Service pdf

Towards integration of European Research Information pdf

VIRTA European pilot requirements



December 2016: Proposal presented in VIRTA steering group in the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture

  • VIRTA concept could potentially be extended to European level and the technical solution implemented by CSC

February 2017: Proposal presented for the euroCRIS Board

  • Discussion with potential collaborative and advisory stakeholders at European level

Spring/Autumn 2017: Pilot between 4 countries

  • Finland, Flanders (Antwerpen), Norway (Oslo), Spain  (Madrid)
  • Countries report their publication information from the years 2014-15 to VIRTA

2018->: Implementation project  - project

  • funding needs to be arranged at European level