Characteristics of European Universities that Participate in Library Crowdfunding Initiatives for Open Access Monographs

Author : Mirela Roncevic

The aim of the study was to identify the traits of 100 European universities across 26 countries that did or did not support one particular library crowdfunding initiative for open access (OA) monographs over the past few years.

By relying on the rankings of four sources, including THE, ARWU, QS, and Leiden, the study identifies some of the traits of the universities that have shown strong interest in the model by already taking part in an established library crowdfunding initiative, as well as those that may play a vital role in its sustainability.

The study’s results show that the institutions that are likely to participate in library crowdfunding initiatives for OA monographs may be defined as highly ranked and produce research in quantity, quantity, relevance, and timeliness. The study’s key revelation is the high academic standing of the institutions that rarely participate in one crowdfunding initiative.

These institutions may not be as “international” in their outlooks, but they stand out for their high-quality and significant research output. As such, they may accelerate the model’s adoption with more consistent participation in library crowdfunding.

URL : Characteristics of European Universities that Participate in Library Crowdfunding Initiatives for Open Access Monographs


Ask the Editors: Assessing the Publishing Needs of Faculty Editors

Authors : Matthew E. Hunter, Liz Dunne, Camille Thomas, Laura Miller, Devin Soper


This article reports results from a survey of faculty members with editorial responsibilities. The survey explored what publishing services and platform functionalities respondents found most valuable in their work as editors, how satisfied they were with the services provided by commercial publishers, and to what extent they were aware of alternative publishing practices.


The authors used data collected from a survey instrument that was distributed to a sample (n = 515) of faculty members with editorial responsibilities at their institution.


Collected data suggest that faculty editors value specific publishing services (e.g., coordination of peer review and copyediting) and platform functionality (e.g., submission and peer-review management) more than others, recognize several challenges facing academic publishing in their disciplines (including the transition to open access publishing models), and are mostly aware of common forms of open access research dissemination such as open access journals and institutional repositories.


The survey results may be helpful to library publishers in making decisions about what publishing services and platform functionalities to prioritize in the development of their publishing programs. In addition to utilizing the survey data to assess the needs of editors, the authors also identified a number of expanded uses of the survey related to marketing and outreach.


Insofar as faculty editors are key stakeholders that library publishers seek to build partnerships with, it is important to understand their needs and preferences as editors. This article provides some insight into these questions that may prove helpful to library publishers.

URL : Ask the Editors: Assessing the Publishing Needs of Faculty Editors


Social justice driving open access publishing: an African perspective

Authors : Reggie Raju, Auliya Badrudeen

The OA movement is generally considered to have been founded for the truly philanthropic purpose of promoting equity and inclusivity in access to scholarship. For Africans, this meant the opening of the research ecosystem to marginalized research communities who could then freely make use of shared research to aid in the socio-economic development and emancipation of the continent.

However, this philanthropic purpose has been deviated from, leading instead to the disenfranchisement of the African research community. Through systemic inequalities embedded in the scholarly ecosystem, the publishing landscape has been northernised, with research from the global north sitting at the very top of the knowledge hierarchy to the exclusion of Africa and other parts of the global south.

For this reason, progressive open access practices and policies need to be adopted, with an emphasis on social justice as an impetus, to enhance the sharing and recognition of African scholarship, while also bridging the ‘research-exchange’ divide that exists between the global south and north.

Furthermore, advocates of open access must collaborate to create equal opportunities for African voices to participate in the scholarly landscape through the creation and dissemination of global south research. Thusly, the continental platform was developed by the University of Cape Town.

This platform was developed around the concept of a tenant model to act as a contributor to social justice-driven open access advocacy, and as a disruptor of the unjust knowledge hierarchies that exist.

URL : Social justice driving open access publishing: an African perspective


Library Publishing Programs at Capacity: Addressing Issues of Sustainability and Scalability

Authors : Johanna Meetz, Jason Boczar


This article discusses the changes to overall goals, direction, and services that were made to two library publishing programs at Pacific University and the University of South Florida when they were no longer able to grow their programs due to an inability to hire additional staff and COVID-19-instigated staff reassignments.

Description of Programs

Pacific University’s publishing program grew out of its institutional repository and, at its peak, published seven open access journals. In addition, Pacific University Libraries founded a University Press in 2016, which has published six books as of 2021. The University of South Florida’s publishing program began publishing open access journals in 2008, and it has grown to include over 20 journals.

Lessons Learned

Both the Pacific University and the University of South Florida publishing programs have faced scalability and sustainability issues, which were further exacerbated by COVID-19. The focus of our library publishing programs, as well as many others, has been on continual growth, which is not sustainable without the ability to hire additional staff or allocate staff time differently.

We argue that standardizing services as well as creating a business plan can help ensure that publishing programs are sustainable and scalable.

Next Steps

We hope to begin a conversation among library publishers about acknowledging limits and creating achievable definitions of success outside of continual growth.

URL : Library Publishing Programs at Capacity: Addressing Issues of Sustainability and Scalability


Library funding for open access at KU Leuven

Authors : Demmy Verbeke, Laura Mesotten

As main buyers of scholarly literature, research libraries have always provided essential economic support for sustaining the market of academic publishing. With the switch to open access (OA), libraries are now faced with transitioning this support from the demand (subscriptions) to the supply (publications) side.

The way in which this is currently done, in general, risks strengthening the preponderance of the for-profit approach to scholarly communication. We therefore believe that it is essential to apply library budgets to foster a greater diversity.

That is exactly the purpose of the Fund for Fair Open Access, set up by KU Leuven Libraries in 2018, which is exclusively devoted to stimulating the development of non-profit and community-led initiatives.

This is achieved by library memberships to sustain open scholarship infrastructure, by supporting diamond OA programmes and by subsidizing OA books published by Leuven University Press.

In this article, we will demonstrate the accomplished successes of the fund and share some insights we have gathered along the way, such as our decision to cease financing article processing charges, even in a Fair OA business model.

URL : Library funding for open access at KU Leuven


Will Academic Library Publishing Break OER? A Diffusion of Innovations Study

Authors : Kathy Essmiller, Tutaleni Asino

Academic libraries are among the organizations advocating for open educational resources (OER), often playing a key campus role in education, advocacy, and support of their creation and publication. Publication of OER resonates with the role of the academic library.

Because “incongruence in perceptions” (Chtena 2019: 24) can cause difficulties and unforeseen challenges with implementation and use of OER, organizations involved in OER initiatives need familiarity with how OER and organizational values align.

The goal of this exploration was to investigate how academic libraries enact academic library publishing programs and the ramification that has in the diffusion process of OER in higher education. Data collected in this single case study research project was analyzed through the lens of Diffusion of Innovations Theory.

The findings from the study suggest that, if academic libraries are to enact the creation and publication of OER in ways appropriate to their conception, those involved will need to be intentional about ensuring enactment of the values foundational to OER.

Future suggested research includes a multiple-case study comparative research study looking at academic library publication of OER, exploration of how opinion leaders and attributes of innovations impact academic library publication of OER, and investigation into the impact of organizational structure on the diffusion of OER creation and publication.

URL : Will Academic Library Publishing Break OER? A Diffusion of Innovations Study


An Analysis of Digital Library Publishing Services in Ukrainian Universities

Authors : Tetiana Kolesnykova, Olena Matveyeva

Objective – The objective of this study was to assess the current state of digital library publishing (DLP) in university libraries in the Ukraine. The study was conducted in the hopes of gaining a better understanding of the DLP landscape, namely institutional operations, as well as their varying publishing initiatives, processes, and scope.


The current study was conducted from January to June 2017 using a mixed methods approach, involving semi-structured interviews and an online questionnaire. Semi-structured interviews were conducted (n = 11) to gain insight into participants’ experiences with DLP.

The interviews helped in the creation of the questions included in our online questionnaire. The questionnaire was distributed to 195 representatives (directors and leading specialists) of university libraries in the Ukraine. Replies were received from 111 of those institutions.

The questionnaire consisted of 11 open- and closed-ended questions to allow the researchers to obtain a holistic picture of the process under investigation.


Analysis of the 111 questionnaires showed that for 26 libraries, DLP services were performed by employees of a separate structural unit of the library. For 34 libraries, employees of various departments were involved in performing certain types of services.

The other 40 respondents’ libraries were planning to do this in the near future. Only 11 respondents replied that they did provide DLP services now nor planned to in the future. Among the libraries providing DLP services, the following results were observed: 54 of 60 work with digital repositories, 47 provide digital publishing platforms for journals, 26 provide digital publishing platforms for books, and 23 provide digital publishing platforms for conferences.


The results obtained indicate a growing trend of expanding digital services in university libraries to support study, teaching, and research. Despite the still spontaneous, chaotic, and poorly explored nature of the development of the library publishing movement in the university libraries of the Ukraine, the readiness of librarians to implement publishing activities is notable.

At the same time, the survey results point to specific aspects, such as organizational, economic, personnel, and motivational, that require further study.

URL : An Analysis of Digital Library Publishing Services in Ukrainian Universities