On Wednesday, April 17 (11 AM EDT), we’ll be presenting a panel discussion on a topic that’s increasingly dominating the conversation in the scholarly communications community: The Future of Independent and Society Publishing.
This is not a new issue — since the rise of the “Big Deal”, it has become increasingly difficult for a smaller, independent publisher to compete against larger commercial firms, and the continuing consolidation of the market has driven even more pressure. The recent announcement of Plan S has lit a fire under many societies and brought those concerns to a boil. Our description for our webinar is as follows:
In an era of consolidation and regulation, scale has become a key factor in a successful publishing program. This has made it increasingly difficult for smaller independent publishers, particularly research societies, to continue to thrive in the market. The recent publication of Plan S, a set of funder requirements for publication, has accelerated the sustainability concerns of the independent publisher. Though not intentional, these sorts of policies are expected to lead to greater market consolidation and favor larger, commercial publishers who are better positioned to weather the oncoming storm of compliance. In this webinar we will hear from independent societies about their future plans, from consultants working with societies on those plans, and from a larger publishing house that partners with societies about the pluses and minuses of such partnerships.
Phill Jones will moderate and lead the discussion, and our All-Chefs panel will include Robert Harington from the American Mathematical Society, Karin Wulf from The Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, Judy Luther from Informed Strategies, and myself.
We’re hoping to examine questions about why societies are such an important part of the research and communications community, and why publishing is a valuable activity for these groups. We’ll look at the current state of society publishing — is this a time to panic and what options are available for the near and far term? We also want to delve into disciplinary and field variance and how to pay attention to the specific needs and concerns of researchers.
What are your questions? Let us know in the comments below, and we hope you will join us on April 17.