For a better experience, click the Compatibility Mode icon above to turn off Compatibility Mode, which is only for viewing older websites.

Drexel Libraries Unveils New Systems to Enable Preservation & Discovery of Drexel’s Digital Objects and Research Output

October 20, 2021

On October 18, 2021, the Drexel Libraries officially launched two online systems to deepen engagement with the University’s archival collections and research assets: the Drexel University Archival Collections platform and the Drexel Research Discovery portal.

The Drexel University Archival Collections platform is the new home for the University’s digital archival collections. Drexel Research Discovery, a new research repository portal, provides access to Drexel-generated research assets.

These new systems support the Libraries’ work to enable preservation and discovery for all Drexel digital objects and research outputs so they are findable, accessible, interoperable and usable through an efficient integration of search and discovery tools. 

This migration splits Drexel-generated research and the University’s digital archival collections into two systems. Previously, Drexel-generated research (such as research outputs, theses and dissertations) and the University’s archival collections were maintained in iDEA, the University’s digital repository. iDEA has served the University well since 2014 but is now reaching its end of life.

Both platforms connect to DragonSearch, the Libraries’ online discovery search tool, allowing members of the Drexel community to identify and locate University-affiliated research outputs and archival collections, as well as to access books, articles and licensed databases all through one search tool.

Drexel University Archival Collections Platform

Screenshot of the Drexel University Archival Collections platform homepage

The new Drexel University Archival Collections platform makes it easy for students, faculty and researchers to explore digital archival materials from the Drexel University Archives and the College of Medicine Legacy Center Archives & Special Collections from a single search tool. The platform includes digitized materials from the two collections, including historical images, audio recordings, video and text. Enhancements to the platform are ongoing, along with the addition of new collections and digitized materials as they become available. 

Drexel Research Discovery Portal

Screenshot of the Drexel Research Discovery portal homescreen

The Libraries also migrated all Drexel-generated research assets (including theses, dissertations and graduate student projects) previously hosted in iDEA to the new Drexel Research Discovery portal. 

This new research portal, hosted on the Esploro research services platform from Ex Libris, broadens the impact of Drexel's research output, offering a single platform to showcase all Drexel research assets, including publications, data sets, and creative works, with integrated search and display.

The portal also integrates with Pivot-RP, a tool that provides access to global funding opportunities and facilitates collaborator discovery.

Other features include faculty profiles which can showcase the full depth and breadth of faculty expertise, facilitate collaborations, attract funders and enhance Drexel’s academic reputation. Drexel faculty have the option to create their own profile, which can be populated with information on their publications, awarded grants, achievements and academic activities. Currently, faculty profile information is provided only on an opt-in basis. For more information about creating a faculty profile, contact