Results of the storymapping workshop: The author Ben-Mario is looking for instructions on Open Access

Ten participants from the Open Access community created fictitious users and possible usage scenarios for the information platform Open Access.

On 2 July, 10 representatives from universities, libraries and publishing houses met for the first storymapping workshop of the project. With the support of the  consulting agency Mayflower, they learned the storymapping method, which they tried out using the Open Access information platform as an example.

The group first created a series of personas, i.e. fictitious persons (groups), which it assumes will use the information platform. In order to be able to describe the possible usage scenarios as well as possible later on, the personas should also be defined as detailed as possible, with name, profession, goals, expectations, etc.

This is how the personas of Ben and Mario, among others, came about: doctoral students who are employed in third-party funded projects have the obligation to publish Open Access. They are looking for reliable information on Open Access and would like to receive instructions on how to comply with the demands of the research funding bodies in the best possible way.

The different personas were then clustered into user groups (content takers, content providers, content processors).

In the second part of the workshop, story maps were created on the basis of a user group and a concrete persona. The descriptions of the personas provided information on possible actions (user activities) that the users could perform on the platform, e.g. downloading information. For each action, the necessary user tasks were identified. The last step was the creation of concrete user stories describing concrete requirements, e.g. "In order for the user to be able to select content for download, he/she needs a search".

The persona Ben-Mario (the personas were grouped together based on similar characteristics) thus visits the information platform with the aim of finding instructions for action, e.g. for funders (user activity). To do so, the persona has to search for and navigate to information about its sponsors, find the relevant results and download the corresponding instructions for action (user tasks). Ben-Mario therefore wants to be able to see a list of all research funders so that he can see and download information about his funders (User Story).

Together with the participants, the project team will now further specify the elaborated personas and create a basis for the further development and modernisation of the information platform. If there will be further workshops or events on this topic, we will inform about them here. For questions and suggestions please contact us: info(at)