Reflections

February 7, 2018

Predatory publishing from a global south perspective

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The Fellows Journal is a forum for the current Library Publishing Coalition fellows to share their experiences and raise topics for discussion within the community. Learn more about the Fellowship Program 

The unilateral determination of a definition of predatory publishing, by Jeffrey Beall, has sent the research publishing world into a tizz. Even though Beall has withdrawn his list, unfortunately in the current technological age this list is not cleared from the web archive nor is there a prevention of the rehashing of the list by someone else. Nor, has there been subsequently an adequate reconceptualization of predatory publishing to ensure that it is not discriminatory to open access or the global south.

Writing as a Fellow of the LPC from the global south, I feel a sense of obligation to follow the call that African academics and intellectuals (not that I am either), on the continent and in the diaspora, play a role in countering the prejudice and misinformation about Africa. Be that as it may, I think there are significant lessons for both the global south and north by interrogating the concept of predatory publishing. The recently published article by Olivarez and others (2018) highlight the need for interventions to remedy the insensitive generalization of predatory publishing. (more…)


December 14, 2017

Thinking about accessibility and sustainability in scholarly communication

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The Fellows Journal is a forum for the current Library Publishing Coalition fellows to share their experiences and raise topics for discussion within the community. Learn more about the Fellowship Program.

In addition to my duties as a scholarly communication librarian, one of my roles at the University of San Francisco is liaison to the Migration Studies program. It’s a relatively new program in a relatively new field, so search terms are still evolving. For example, one of the common roadblocks that students encounter is that research data is available under “refugees” rather than “migrants.” This search term confusion is easily remedied, but there are also problematic descriptors such as “illegal” and “undocumented”. One of the questions that came up this past year was, What do you call someone who has valid legal immigration status but who is deported or detained? (People in the class agreed “illegal” is unacceptable, and “undocumented” is inaccurate.) Since many of the students in the program have a personal stake in these issues, these conversations around naming are not taken lightly.

In addition to these discussions in the classroom, naming and authority are, of course, important to librarianship as well. More recently, I have been thinking about “accessibility” and “sustainability” as terms that are heavily used both in my work as a scholarly communications librarian and more broadly outside of my professional niche. 

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December 6, 2017

What library publishing looks like in 2017 – Excerpt from the Library Publishing Directory

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Cover image of the 2018 Library Publishing DirectoryIf you haven’t yet checked out the latest edition of the Library Publishing Directory and the new, searchable online platform, well…they’re pretty cool! See our previous post for the full announcement. While we are super excited about the online platform, the one thing it doesn’t have is the Directory‘s front and back matter, which is more interesting than you’d think.

Each year, the Directory‘s introduction includes a ‘state of the field’ based on that year’s data. It highlights trends and new developments in library publishing as reported by the programs that contribute their information. We wanted to share this year’s on the blog to make it easier to find and discuss. The following is an excerpt from this year’s Directory, written by Melanie Schlosser, Liz Hamilton, Joshua Neds-FoxTom Bielavitz, and Alexandra Hoff.

LIBRARY PUBLISHING LANDSCAPE 2018

Each year, the Directory Committee mines the Directory data set in order to highlight trends and unique aspects of library publishing. In our fifth year, the trends and tendencies pointed out in previous introductions have started to reveal themselves as enduring characteristics and essential features of the library publishing landscape. We believe this reflects both the growing data set and the maturing of the field itself. This introduction highlights that continuity (“The Song Remains the Same”) and draws out two of those essential features for consideration (“Openness” and “Publishing and Pedagogy”).

THE SONG REMAINS THE SAME

This year’s data is remarkably consistent with what we have seen in past Directories. Most of the numbers are very similar to last year or within range from previous years. Of the two areas where there are noticeable changes—services and digital preservation—one of them is in line with previously noted trends.

Partnerships

Partnerships remain important to library publishing programs, and individual faculty and campus departments are still our most common partners. We continue to see significant numbers of partnerships with graduate and undergraduate students, and the number of university press partnerships continues to rise slowly. The only substantial change from last year was a jump in partnerships with graduate students (from 72% last year to 77% this year).

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October 6, 2017

Meet Reggie Raju, 2017-18 LPC Fellow

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The Fellows Journal is a forum for the current Library Publishing Coalition fellows to share their experiences and raise topics for discussion within the community. Learn more about the Fellowship Program.

I am Reggie Raju, currently the Deputy Director: Research and Learning Services at the University of Cape Town (UCT), South Africa. I am originally from an east coast city in South Africa called Durban. I am the son of indentured labourers who were brought from India to work the sugar cane farms on the east coast of South Africa. Coming from a struggle background in which some members of my family were either exiled or imprisoned, the struggles against the apartheid system had taught me important lessons in life one of which was the drive for social justice. (more…)


September 25, 2017

Meet Charlotte Roh, 2017-18 LPC Fellow

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Fellows Journal text over an image of a desktop

The Fellows Journal is a forum for the current Library Publishing Coalition fellows to share their experiences and raise topics for discussion within the community. Learn more about the Fellowship Program. Charlotte Roh is the Scholarly Communications Librarian at the University of San Francisco and recipient of the 2017 LPC Award for Outstanding Scholarship in Library Publishing. Charlotte is one of two inaugural fellows in the Library Publishing Coalition Fellowship Program, and her goals for the fellowship include advancing social justice and diversity in library publishing.

At the start of this fall semester, one of the professors on my campus asked me to come talk to his copyediting class about academic publishing as a career. My usual audience is librarians and faculty, so I always welcome a chance to talk with undergraduates. It’s an entirely different conversation, and an opportunity to essentially indulge in nostalgia and my own hard-won knowledge about the New York publishing industry. (more…)