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The University Library System, University of Pittsburgh: How & Why We Publish

Deliyannides, Timothy S and Gabler, Vanessa (2013) The University Library System, University of Pittsburgh: How & Why We Publish. In: Library Publishing Toolkit. IDS Project Press, Geneseo, NY, 79 - 96. ISBN 978-0-9897226-1-2

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The University Library System (ULS), University of Pittsburgh began its e-journal publishing program in 2007 and in five years has quickly grown to publish 34 peer-reviewed scholarly research journals. In this chapter, we will describe the rationale for and the genesis of this program to publish new original content, explain how the program evolved, and give insight into what direction it is likely to take in the future. The ULS has built an extensive digital publishing program over the past two decades. Beginning with digitization projects to reformat the ULS’ unique collections, the program now includes well over 100,000 digital objects in over 100 thematic digital collections including photographs, manuscripts, maps, books, journal articles, electronic theses and dissertations, government documents, and other gray literature such as working papers, white papers, and technical reports. The development of the ULS publishing program was driven by a strong and enduring institutional commitment to Open Access to scholarly information. The organization has placed strategic emphasis on leadership in transforming the patterns of scholarly communication and supporting researchers not only in discovering and accessing scholarly information, but in the production and sharing of new knowledge and the creation of original scholarly research. In pursuit of these goals, the ULS has developed a suite of specific tools and techniques to build a highly cost-efficient e-journal publishing program. The ULS provides its publishing partners with a hardware and software platform and associated electronic publishing services using the open source Open Journal Systems (OJS) software developed by the Public Knowledge Project. This platform allows for richly customizable management of all stages of editorial workflow. In addition, OJS sports a number of reader tools to enhance content discovery and use, including multilingual support for both online interfaces and content in many languages, persistent URLs, RSS feeds, tools for bookmarking and sharing articles through social networking sites, full-text searching, and compliance with the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting. Additional services offered by the ULS include consultation on editorial workflow management, software configuration, graphic design services, initial training, online usage statistics, review of all new published issues for metadata quality, and ongoing systems support. The ULS also provides ISSN registration, assigns DOIs, and assists in promotional efforts to establish the journal. Digital preservation is facilitated through LOCKSS. Steps to start up a new scholarly journal are covered. We will also describe common pitfalls to avoid and techniques that help with clear communications and management of mutual expectations between publisher and publishing partners. Quality control is discussed, including careful selection of partners, conducting peer reviews, maintaining academic quality, advising on publishing best practices, and measuring impact. With each passing year and each acquisitions budget cycle, research libraries have more to gain by becoming publishers. By publishing new Open Access content, libraries can not only help meet the most fundamental needs of the researchers they support, but they can simultaneously help transform today’s inflationary cost model for serials. The publication model described in this paper can serve as a guide for libraries wishing to implement similar programs.


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Item Type: Book Section
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Deliyannides, Timothy Stsd@pitt.eduTSD
Gabler, Vanessavgabler@pitt.eduVGABLER0000-0002-5135-4146
Date: 31 July 2013
Date Type: Publication
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Publisher: IDS Project Press
Place of Publication: Geneseo, NY
Page Range: 79 - 96
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: University libraries > University Library System
Refereed: Yes
ISBN: 978-0-9897226-1-2
Title of Book: Library Publishing Toolkit
EditorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Official URL:
Date Deposited: 31 Jul 2013 17:30
Last Modified: 31 Jul 2020 19:05


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