Zotero Collaborative Research Portal: Russian and Soviet History at Harvard

Working with Professors Terry Martin and Kelly O’Neill, the Davis Center Collection has created the beta version of a collaborative research portal for bibliographic and primary-source research resources, both in print and online, using the citation management tool Zotero and its Zotero Group functionality.

The items in the group’s library are viewable to anyone at http://www.zotero.org/groups/russian_and_soviet_history_at_harvard/items. Full participation in the group, for now, is limited to the Harvard-based community of researchers, but opening it more broadly when it is more fully developed is a possibility at some point.

About the Project

The intent of the project is to create an enduring online research portal for the community of researchers in Russian and Soviet history at Harvard. The portal will present a curated and annotated array of research resources that will expand and be sustained by the community over time, and is intended to serve as a model for similar sites in other fields and time periods. It will focus on primary-source and bibliographic resources, and will encompass:

  • online resources available by license or subscription here at Harvard;
  • print and analog resources available in the Harvard library system;
  • online resources available on the open Web; and
  • to a lesser extent, those available at other universities.


Each resource included in the database has mandatory tags in 6 categories, and then unstructured tagging by subject keywords. The required categories are:

  1. Type of primary source
  2. Region/country/city
  3. Time period
  4. Bibliographic type
  5. Languages
  6. Major/minor resource

The Software

To learn more about Zotero and how to install the Firefox plug-in to use it, visit http://www.zotero.org.