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In celebration of Open Access Week, let’s take a moment to review how MPublishing is contributing to the Open Access movement at the University of Michigan and beyond.

What is Open Access?
Open Access (OA) is a way of publishing scholarly literature online, free of charge, and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions (see Peter Suber’s more detailed overview here). Its success obviously depends on the consent of authors and copyright-holders. But more broadly than this, “going OA” requires us to rethink how digital-age scholars use and produce knowledge. And how libraries—as the clearinghouses for scholarly communication—can sustain the broadest access to this knowledge.

Why Open Access?
As the Public Library of Science writes, OA is all about “free availability and unrestricted use.” The increasing complexity of research across the sciences, social sciences, and humanities requires ever more advanced collaborations.  As knowledge networks grow to meet new research demands, access to scholarship has become not simply one important component, but the centerpiece of state-of-the-art R&D.

MPublishing is committed to offering open access imprints and services that promote innovative research and extend the bandwidth for accessible knowledge. Our OA initiatives include:

  • digitalculturebooks was established in 2006 as an innovative partnership between MLibrary and the University of Michigan Press. The imprint is dedicated to publishing pioneering work in new media studies and the emerging field of digital humanities.
  • Open Humanities Press (OHP) is an international open access publishing collective whose mission is to make contemporary critical work freely available worldwide.  As a leading open access imprint, OHP has primarily focused on scholarly journals. By partnering with MPublishing, the press will begin extending the OA model to online, long-form monographs.
  • While MPublishing journals are offered through a number of delivery formats, our emphasis has always been on open access, ensuring that our journal partners have the worldwide impact their scholarship merits. For an example of a pioneering open access journal publication, take a look at MPublishing’s own Journal of Electronic Publishing.
  • The University of Michigan Press has teamed up with HathiTrust to offer fully viewable and searchable versions of its backlist collection (1,000 titles strong and growing).
  • The Copyright Office can help you understand how open access can provide greater access to your work.
  • Deep Blue, our institutional repository, provides permanent access to scholarship produced by the UM community.
  • The University of Michigan is a member of the Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity. MPublishing and the Library manage the COPE Fund for the University of Michigan campus, which encourages UM scholars to publish in Open Access journals by subsidizing author publication fees.

For more information about Open Access, see the Copyright Office’s page about OA.

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