Thursday, May 9, 10:00-11:00am
Room: Joseph & Rosalie Segal Centre (1400-1430)

Presenters: Steel Wagstaff, Educational Client Manager, Pressbook; Michelle Reed, Open Education Librarian, University of Texas at Arlington [Mavs Open Press]; Heather Staines, Director of Partnerships, Hypothesis; Hugh McGuire, Executive Director, Rebus Foundation

Description: For over 500 years, book publishing has meant the coordinated production of a physical object which required significant capital investment. Book publishers have historically provided value in three broad ways: 1) seeking, developing, and preparing new material (acquisition & editing); 2) providing capital and overseeing production; 3) bringing publications to market (publicity, advertising, distribution).

The value proposition offered by traditional publishers has been particularly disrupted in academic publishing. Professional organizations and learned societies often perform much of the acquisition and editing labor (e.g. peer review); digital tools and print-on-demand services have dramatically reduced the capital requirements of production and provided new distribution opportunities; and the emergence of internet mega-platforms has radically altered the global advertising industry. In an environment where most authors (and many publishers) of scholarly monographs do not expect their work to have much commercial value, traditional publication models make little sense. Despite new possibilities for creating and distributing knowledge, scholarly publishers have been slow to respond.

Our panel brings together representatives from open-source digital publishing toolmakers, an organization dedicated to building more egalitarian publishing communities and processes, and a library publisher to discuss promising new approaches to the three roles historically filled by traditional academic publishers. We will describe recent partnerships and share specific ideas related to book production, web annotation, licensing, and distribution that can help reshape academic publishing in service of the public good.

The format will be a lightning round of use cases followed by discussion between the presenters on best practices, challenges, and opportunities brought about by new developments in scholarly communications and higher education. Ample time will be reserved for attendees to ask questions and share examples.