Roger C. Schonfeld

Roger Schonfeld is Director, Library and Scholarly Communication Program, for Ithaka S+R. In this role, he leads studies of academics’ and students’ attitudes, practices, and needs, as well as research on the changing role of the academic library, learned society, and scholarly publisher. In recent years, Roger has spearheaded the development of Ithaka S+R’s local survey service, helping individual colleges and universities to examine and more effectively serve the practices and needs of students and faculty members. He also consults on strategic and business planning for libraries and library consortia, digital humanities projects, distinctive collections and centers of excellence, and scholarly publishers. Roger has served on the NSF Blue Ribbon Task Force for Sustainable Digital Preservation and Access and NISO’s Open Discovery Initiative. Earlier, he was a research associate at The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, where he worked on projects related to college athletics and scholarly communication. Roger has a degree in English Literature from Yale University. His Ithaka S+R projects and publications are freely available online, and he is active on Twitter as @rschon. Ithaka S+R is part of ITHAKA, a not-for-profit organization that also operates Artstor, JSTOR, and Portico, but the views shared here are solely Roger’s.

Articles by Roger C. Schonfeld

A Taxonomy of University Presses Today

University presses bring a diversity not only of costs, scale, and business models, but also of organizational capacity, incentives, and objectives. As efforts are mounted to transition monograph publishing to open access, it is vital that we recognize the richness and complexity of this community.

Building a Repository in Partnership with Elsevier: The University of Florida’s Perspective

The University of Florida and Elsevier have entered into a partnership to build links between the institutional repository and ScienceDirect, which has received quite a bit of criticism in recent weeks.I have found it useful to try to understand the different sides of what seems to me to be a debate about how best to utilize the increasingly mature infrastructure and programmatic capacity for scholarly communications.

Rethinking Authentication, Revamping the Business

IP authentication is the most important mechanism for authorizing access to licensed e-resources resources. Substantial business and policy issues for libraries and publishers alike connect up to IP authentication. Today, there is substantial interest in eliminating IP authentication, so it is timely to examine the implications if we were soon to see its end.

Elsevier Acquires SSRN

Today, Elsevier is announcing that it has acquired SSRN, the preprint and publishing community that focuses on social sciences and law. Among other things, the SSRN acquisition is another step in Elsevier’s path towards data and analytics. In a number of ways, Mendeley is the linchpin for this acquisition. More generally, this acquisition plainly indicates Elsevier’s interest in the open access repository space. Finally, universities, their libraries, and other publishers, should have on their minds some of the policy and governance issues around the data that Elsevier is accumulating and the uses to which they may be put.

Will the Monograph Experience a Transition to E-Only? Latest Findings.

Although journals, other serials, and reference have made a large scale transition away from print, we must not assume that the same path will inevitably be pursued for other components of collections. A combination of business models, reading practices, and other user needs will play the biggest role in determining the prospects for the printed monograph. Today, it seems that a dual-format environment may remain before us for some time, and there will be advantages for the libraries, publishers, and intermediaries that can develop models for monographs that work best in such an environment.

How Readers Discover Content in Scholarly Publications

A new survey looks at the ways readers discover scholarly publications. Due to methodological limitations, scholarly information professionals should practice caution in interpreting the findings and considering potential business responses. Ultimately, it is impressive that the researchers have taken on such a large-scale study, which adds some additional context to our understanding of discovery, especially in its diversity.

Improving Privacy by Rethinking Architecture

Today, we grapple with privacy issues as consumers, as citizens, and as voters. As an industry, we should be thinking about how to draw not only on policy but also on technical architecture to balance privacy and innovation. When the stars align, an entirely different architecture for the control of user data is possible. What would such a shift mean for scholarly publishing and academic libraries?