Skip to main content

Revised NISO Open Discovery Initiative Recommended Practice Now Available For Public Comment

The NISO Open Discovery Initiative (ODI) Standing Committee invites feedback on proposed revisions to its Recommended Practice, originally published in 2014 as NISO RP-19-2014 Open Discovery Initiative: Promoting Transparency in Discovery. Librarians, publishers, vendors, and others who are interested in how content is included in discovery systems are encouraged to share their comments by March 9, 2020.

Index-based discovery services are now established as one of the main channels through which users discover and access content. NISO created ODI in 2012, and published the original ODI Recommended Practice in 2014, to provide technical recommendations for the exchange of data, including data formats, methods of delivery, usage reporting, frequency of updates, and rights of use. It is intended to provide a way of assessing content providers’ participation in discovery services and to ensure fair and unbiased indexing and linking. 

Standing Committee co-chair, Rachel Kessler (Product Manager, ProQuest), commented, “Members of the ODI Standing Committee — representing all stakeholder communities — have been working hard for the past few years to socialize and support the original NISO Recommended Practice, which has enjoyed wide implementation. More recently we conducted extensive community surveys to gather additional data about the current content discovery environment, which has helped us determine appropriate updates in our “Phase 2” to benefit even more organizations.” 

The second co-chair, Laura Morse (Director, Library Systems & Support, Harvard University), added, ”In the process of updating the Recommended Practice, we have added material that affects content providers, discovery service providers, and libraries.  At a high level, we hope the changes support better metadata sharing (including information about open access material) and record display, improved tracking of usage statistics and authentication mechanisms, as well as providing advice on systems, training, and communication for libraries that configure and upgrade their discovery systems.  We also address some areas that were outside the scope of the original Recommended Practice, such as more detailed treatment of Abstracting and Indexing (A&I) content products. We warmly invite anyone who is concerned about the discoverability of licensed content in discovery systems to share their feedback on this second wave of ODI recommendations, which have been developed — with NISO’s help — by and for the community.”

NISO's Associate Executive Director, Nettie Lagace, noted, "All stakeholders in the indexed discovery ecosystem — libraries, content providers, and discovery providers — expect high levels of service from each other. The work of the ODI Standing Committee in updating these best practice recommendations, under Rachel and Laura’s leadership, helps to communicate these expectations and support the realization of excellent processes, to ensure their continued value to the information community. Our thanks to everyone involved; the Standing Committee is looking forward to reviewing feedback.” 

The draft Recommended Practice, with commenting capability, is available at from January 24 through March 9.

About NISO

NISO, based in Baltimore, Maryland, fosters the development and maintenance of standards that facilitate the creation, persistent management, and effective interchange of information so that it can be trusted for use in research and learning. To fulfill this mission, NISO engages libraries, publishers, information aggregators, and other organizations that support learning, research, and scholarship through the creation, organization, management, and curation of knowledge. NISO works with intersecting communities of interest and across the entire lifecycle of information standards. NISO is a not-for-profit association accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). For more information, visit the NISO website (


Nettie Lagace

Associate Executive Director

Nettie Lagace is the Associate Executive Director at NISO, where she is responsible for facilitating the work of NISO's topic committees and development groups for standards and best practices, and