New Directions

Notes from this morning’s first session follow. Any misrepresentations herein are solely the fault of the note taker.

Dan Greenstein, Vice Provost, University of California
“New Directions, Different Possibilities”

UC libraries have developed wide range of publishing activities: eScholarship repository; opportunity for merging digital and print; postprints

UC press has a wide range of publishing activities as well: books, journals (online and print)

press has been exploring joint ventures with library: monographs that are moving online into repository; many backlist titles moving online; archive of Mark twain papers, moving critical edition publishing online

but have reached the edge of what they know how to do — now asking searching questions about what can be done from here, what it means to “publish” in a 21st century university

seeking new modes, in tandem and jointly, in close consultation with academic faculty and faculty administration

thinking about acquisitions strategies; the relationship between open-access and fee-based models

newer, underdeveloped fields might want to begin publishing in open-access modes, and later migrate to fee-based; might happen the other way, too

opportunities for new modes of scholarly publishing require thinking about possibilities as a suite rather than as discrete models

encountering new opportunities and emerging needs: “informal” publications (blogs, wikis); research data; dynamic and interactive reference; learning materials as open textbooks — the Weiner Lecture Archives

evolving research cyberinfrastructure — not just the grid/plumbing/network, but also managed computational resources (computer clusters) — distributed ownership/management of hardware has become problematic; “use the network to cluster the network of clusters”

but is there more to this emerging grid? does it include libraries and publishing services? if the grid is the sum total of information services in support of the dissemination of research and knowledge, can we build a grid that will (1) enable faculty to attract external funding to support their research, (2) figure favorably for the University in faculty retention and recruitment?

how does our thinking about the research grid impact on patterns of investment in it? (not just about press as cost center, but will talk about that, too)

have contemplated greater alignment — what it means to develop alignment of publishing activities with research enterprise — constantly evolving, moving into new, often interdisciplinary areas, without existing publishing vehicles, but with new communications and publishing needs (digital art and digital media)

alignment with other information services: often siloed organizationally and functionally, into media and computing units (radio, press, tv, web functions, etc)… but increasingly integrating, or at least integratable

alignment with the university’s mission: wondering whether and how to leverage the capacities of our grid to ensure that UC research contributes to academic discourse but also that it shapes policy, informs public opinion, influences profession practice, and is brought to bear in ways that contribute directly to the health, safety, well-being, and cultural enrichment of the people and communities we serve

also thought deeply about sustainability: cost center model — if one assumes that press must sustain itself as cost center, then the press will remain a cost center; if you take a view of publishing as infrastructure that university must maintain in order to sustain its mission, one might develop other models

— question about humanities involvement in cyberinfrastructure
— my question about infrastructure and human knowledge base; his answers: must have discussion in broad context — libraries and presses are too small to think about how to make real trade-offs between them, but if we start thinking about a broad research grid, we can start thinking about the reallocation of resources in more systemic fashion
— question about wide range of needs of faculty, including tenure and review
— comment from aaup: u. presses have a zero bottom line — where there have been profits, they’ve been sown right back into operations; where research and development has happened, it’s privately, through the wileys and elseviers; if universities don’t invest, private presses will
— question of peer review: must figure out how to bring peer review into digital publishing world; targeted by cdl as one of main tasks

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