Dean of Libraries
The Mapping Digital Scholarly Communication Infrastructure project is an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation funded project that sought to establish the scope of the infrastructure that supports digital scholarly communications, and the financial and organizational strength of the organizations that provide it. The project also sought to establish the level of support for this infrastructure provided by academic libraries. We will discuss a census of infrastructure providers and case studies of providers that together provide insight into the question of financial and organizational strength, as well as a bibliographic scan of the literature that more completely describes the provider universe. We established library support by surveying academic libraries and by conducting a series of focus groups with academic library leaders. While the data we collected is largely based on US-based efforts, we believe that our findings may be usefully considered in conjunction with similar studies conducted or being conducted in Canada, Latin America, and Europe. All of the data was collected prior to the onset of the COVID pandemic and thus provides a baseline for the changes that can be expected as scholarly communication adapts to the current crisis. While the results of the census and survey were less comprehensive than hoped for, the strengths and weaknesses of the infrastructure we uncovered, especially for open and nonprofit organizations, provide us with a clear sense of what next steps might be to improve this important part of the scholarly communication sector.