Developing a Business Plan for a Library Publishing Program
peter.suber's bookmarks 2019-03-21
Abstract: Over the last twenty years, library publishing has emerged in higher education as a new class of publisher. Conceived as a response to commercial publishing practices that have strained library budgets and prevented scholars from openly licensing and sharing their works, library publishing is both a local service program and a broader movement to disrupt the current scholarly publishing arena. It is growing both in numbers of publishers and numbers of works produced. The commercial publishing framework which determines the viability of monetizing a product is not necessarily applicable for library publishers who exist as a common good to address the needs of their academic communities. Like any business venture, however, library publishers must develop a clear service model and business plan in order to create shared expectations for funding streams, quality markers, as well as technical and staff capacity. As the field is maturing from experimental projects to full programs, library publishers are formalizing their offerings and limitations. The anatomy of a library publishing business plan is presented and includes the principles of the program, scope of services, and staffing requirements. Other aspects include production policies, financial structures, and measures of success.