Economics and Usage of Digital Libraries: Byting the BulletSkip other details (including permanent urls, DOI, citation information)
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A closer look at the contents
To understand the basics of ReDIF it is best to start with an example. Here is a piece of ReDIF data at http://www.econ.surrey.ac.uk/discussion_papers/RePEC/sur/surrec/surrec9601.pdf:
When we look at this record, the ReDIF data resembles a standard bibliographical format, with authors, title etc.. The only thing that appears a bit mysterious here is the "Author-Person" field. This field quotes a handle that is known to RePEc. This handle leads to a record maintained at a RePEc handle server.
In this record, we have the handles of documents that the person has written. This record will allow user services to list the complete papers by a given author. This is obviously useful when we want to find papers that one particular author has written. It is also useful to have a central record of the person's contact details. This eliminates the need to update the relevant data elements on every document record. In fact the record on the paper template may be considered as the historical record that is valid at the time when the paper was written, but the address in the person template is the one that is currently valid.
In the person template, we find another RePEc identifier in the "Workplace-Institution" field. This points to a record that describes the institution, stored at another RePEc handle server.
This information in this record is self-explanatory. Less apparent is the origin of these records.