You want a good introduction to institutional repositories. What should you read? Try one or more of the works below. For a quick overview, try Drake, Johnson, or Lynch. For more detail, try Crow or Ware. For an in-depth, library-oriented overview, Gibbons can’t be beat.
Crow, Raym. The Case for Institutional Repositories: A SPARC Position Paper. Washington, DC: The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition, 2002.
Drake, Miriam A. "Institutional Repositories: Hidden Treasures." Searcher 12, no. 5 (2004): 41-45.
Gibbons, Susan. "Establishing an Institutional Repository." Library Technology Reports 40, no. 4 (2004). (Available on Academic Search Premier.)
Johnson, Richard K. "Institutional Repositories: Partnering with Faculty to Enhance Scholarly Communication." D-Lib Magazine 8 (November 2002).
Lynch, Clifford A. "Institutional Repositories: Essential Infrastructure for Scholarship in the Digital Age." ARL: A Bimonthly Report on Research Library Issues and Actions from ARL, CNI, and SPARC, no. 226 (2003): 1-7.
Ware, Mark. Pathfinder Research on Web-based Repositories. London: Publisher and Library/Learning Solutions, 2004.