News Release and Video Interview | Amherst College
Connotea: eastman's bookmarks matching tag oa.new 2012-12-07
Amherst College is launching a new digital publishing venture that will offer peer-reviewed books written by leading scholars in the humanities and the social sciences that are then carefully edited and made available for free online. Conceived by Amherst College Librarian Bryn Geffert, Amherst College Press will be housed in the college’s Frost Library and will solicit manuscripts from scholars who may be especially receptive to new publishing paradigms at a time when traditional academic presses are reducing the number of titles they publish. 'We will be the first university or college press to publish books solely under an open-access model,' said Geffert. 'Although several university presses publish a few books each year under such a model, I do not know of another university press in the United States doing all books, all open-access.' Geffert observed that the endeavor exemplifies the college’s motto, Terras Irradient, a Latin phrase that means 'Let them give light to the world...' The project has the strong support of the college’s president, Biddy Martin, who serves on an American Academy of Arts and Sciences commission that encourages research in the humanities and social sciences... Additional incentives for scholars to participate in this model will be much wider readership, a rigorous peer-review process and a level of editorial collaboration not typically available in traditional academic publishing houses... At the outset, Amherst College Press will publish solely in liberal arts disciplines such as political science, literary studies, history, economics and anthropology—areas for which Amherst is well known. The press will produce books in formats that will be suitable for most e-readers; print-on-demand may be available. The press will not focus on print production or distribution. Plans are in place to hire a director and two editors to staff the press. Funding for the press will come from the Frost Library and from an endowed position for which the college is currently raising money. The college also expects that the content of the Amherst College-affiliated literary magazine The Common will be freely available online under the open-access model governing the press, while The Common will continue to use its own resources to produce the publication’s print version..."
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