Could VIVO, An Open Source Platform For The Discovery of Researchers, Help Foster Collaboration in Legal Academia?

VIVO is an open source semantic web application originally developed and implemented at Cornell. When installed and populated with researcher interests, activities, and accomplishments, it enables the discovery of research and scholarship across disciplines at that institution and beyond. VIVO supports browsing and a search function which returns faceted results for rapid retrieval of desired information. Content in any local VIVO installation may be maintained manually,  brought into VIVO in automated ways from local systems of record, such as HR, grants, course, and faculty activity databases, or from database providers such as publication aggregators and funding agencies.

via About | VIVO.

Developed for use in the scientific research community, VIVO may have some interesting applications in the legal scholarship world. With enough community participation the VIVO platform would allow legal scholars to locate those with like interests to further collaborative efforts. It could also contribute to the identification of trends in legal scholarship and research.

The real question is whether or not law schools are prepared to make the necessary contributions. At the moment the beta version of the cross institutional VIVO search includes information from the law schools at three of the participating universities: Cornell, Indiana, and U of Florida. A search for “administrative law” returns 81 results, mostly from the 3 law schools.snapshot20130815-01

VIVO is worth keeping an eye as it grows. If it reaches its potential perhaps it will foster more collaboration in legal academia.