GitHub-Zenodo linkage

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GitHub - Zenodo Integration for GRASS GIS


This wiki-page provides information about the linkage between the GRASS GIS repository on GitHub and the data archive Zenodo. This includes the motivation why this is relevant for the GRASS GIS community, hands on advice from the Zenodo helpdesk how to do the task and strategic information about future development paths, as this is partially work in progress (scientific grade automated software citation by persistent identifiers).

Introducing Zenodo

Zenodo is a general-purpose open-access repository. It is developed under the European OpenAIRE program (a network of Open Access repositories, archives and journals that support Open Access policies) and operated by CERN. The services provided by Zenodo are based on an Open Source software stack. To users, including the GRASS GIS developer team, Zenodo provides long term archiving of digital content, including software.

Benefits for the GRASS GIS community

Long term archiving

Scientific citation by DOI

GitHub - Zenodo Integration

Generic Documentation

GRASS GIS specific Information

The following feedback was provided by the Zenodo helpdesk in Q1/Q2 2019 in advance of the GRASS github migration:

Many DOI for individual GRASS modules or rather a DOI for the GRASS GIS software framework ?

"Yes, in principle it's possible to issue DOIs for all modules, but I'm I don't think this is useful. You mention e.g. that it would be nice to cite both the overall system as well as individual modules. This will essentially "dilute" the citations over many DOIs and thus the citation count for GRASS will seem a lot lower than it actually is. Thus for getting credit, it's better to have one DOI per major version of the grass (where each version can have an updated author list). Also, having many DOIs makes it very difficult for discovery systems to track the citations automatically. Essentially Zenodo is the first system, where we can actually aggregate citations for all versions and a specific version of software."

"If you want to give credit to individual modules, I think it's better to then simply mention it. For instance, the journal text could mention it used module X, and the landing page of DOI for GRASS, could simply have a description detailing who did which module."

"We have now collected some 5000 citations to software in Zenodo, and what we can see for the top cited packages is that if the project provides a "citation recommendation" then people actually follow it. Example:"

How to integrate previous releases of GRASS GIS into Zenodo

Q: "The code base of GRASS GIS has been maintained in CVS/SVN since the late 1990s, I would be grateful for additional advice on how to proceed to

avoid DOI-related blunders:

If possible, all GRASS releases should be made available for scientific citation via Zenodo (overview over all releases here:

The oldest GRASS release, which has been preserved as a tarball predates software versioning (GRASS 4.3. from 1999) All later releases are currently available in the current SVN repo (

So to be able to get a DOI for each major version of GRASS, as advised in your previous response, can you please recommend an approach how to feed

the sequence of previous major GRASS releases via GitHub into Zenodo, so  the DOI for the releases are in the proper sequence (DOI for GRASS 5.X 
referencing to the newer releases of GRASS6.x, 7.x, etc.) ? 


Options for future extensions