Librarian of the College
Dean of the Library
Sue Ann Gardner
Scholarly Communications Libraria
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Launching the Lever Press (Roy, Geffert)
This presentation will include reflections on the trials and tribulations of launching a new, open-access publishing venture. Frustrated by the financial models governing academic publishing, worried about a lack of innovation at scholarly presses, tired of whining from the sidelines, and eager to re-imagine the role of academic libraries, the Oberlin Group of liberal arts college libraries commissioned a task force to explore the viability of a new publishing initiative. Four years, two market studies, and hundreds of fund raising calls later, the Lever Press is about to launch with the support of forty institutions. We will discuss why we did it, how we did it, and why we still lose sleep at night.
Craft Publishing: A Proposal for a Programmatic Paradigm Shift in Academic Libraries (Gardner)
This presentation will include the parameters by which an effective, at-cost publishing program may be structured in academic libraries. With advances in technology, electronic storage, and connectivity, and contrary to the claim that such activities may result in a “race to the bottom,” libraries have proven to be natural entities within which to effect a paradigm change in scholarly publishing. Activities to date, however, have been more often than not underfunded and understaffed. Even among those that have been well supported, efforts across the community have been ad hoc. Within the context of recent initiatives and discussions, the authors will outline an emerging model, including staffing, budgeting, and workflow requirements, that is viable and allows for local constraints. The collective output of such operations will serve to mitigate some of the challenges posed by academia’s partnership with the current, established publishing conglomerate.
Collaborators: Sue Ann Gardner, Paul Royster, Linnea Fredrickson (University of Nebraska-Lincoln), Brian Rosenblum, and Ada Emmett (University of Kansas)