IR Withdrawal Policy

Withdrawal Policy for Rice University's digital scholarship archive

The Rice Digital Scholarship Archive (RDSA) strives to provide persistent access to materials deposited in the archive. However, RDSA foresees that under certain circumstances it may be necessary to remove items from public view.  In order to avoid the loss of the historical record, and to support scholars who may have previously cited the item, a “tombstone” will be provided that will state:


      This item has been withdrawn and is no longer available.


Our internal practice is for staff to record a reason for withdrawal in the <dc.description.withdrawal> field. We may use one of the following boilerplate statements:

Collection curators have software permissions to change the status of an item to withdrawn.


Withdrawn items will still appear in exported metadata available to staff, and can be filtered by the <dc.description.withdrawal> field.


Withdrawn item records are excluded from OAI PMH queries.

The digital files will remain archived but will not be accessible to the public, and the digital object will continue to be backed up with the systems in place, which provide for persistent preservation. This decision may be revisited in the future if particularly sensitive items must be withdrawn or if the volume of withdrawn materials becomes prohibitively large.


We will review how often the index for Onesearch is refreshed (Amanda Focke?) to determine how long a record for the digital object remains available for search.


Note:  Accidentally deposited duplicate items, which are rare, are deleted from the IR. A duplicate is defined as an exact copy of an image or document already found in the archive and not an edited or alternate version of a pre-existing item. Permanent deletion of an item can only be performed by system administrators. Please contact DSS staff.


Community Notes

Unique identifiers assigned by the WRC to these digital objects will not be repurposed. Instead, a note will be added to the DigiObject Spreadsheet indicating that the item has been withdrawn.


Electronic theses and dissertations are considered permanent records. They are not candidates for withdrawal. However ETDs may be embargoed for limited periods through the Graduate Studies Office.



This guidelines are based upon MIT's guidelines for withdrawing items from DSpace@MIT.


Related resources