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Book Review — The Traps of Big Data Revealed in “Weapons of Math Destruction” by Cathy O’Neil

The new book, “Weapons of Math Destruction,” calls out many worrying trends in the application of big data, with particularly salient entries on higher education rankings, for-profit universities, the justice system, insurance, and employment. Continue reading

How Much Does Publishing Cost?

There have been several recent studies of what it costs to publish academic monographs, but they all mistake the cost of production with the cost of publication. This post summarizes the issues and suggests a very simple way to calculate the cost of publication. Continue reading

Annual Reports — What Do They Actually Tell Us?

Annual reports from publishing organizations always have a marketing slant, even when they are required filings with governmental bodies. But some are more marketing-oriented than others, and should not be mistaken for transparency, but rather tend toward rationalization. eLife’s recent report, challenging others to be as transparent, is itself opaque and purposeful. Continue reading

A Quick Tour Around the World of Scholarly Journal Publishing

A presentation to the 2016 ISMTE US Conference. Something of a “state of our industry” overview, or perhaps, everything I needed to know I learned from the other bloggers at The Scholarly Kitchen. Continue reading

The Future(s) (plural) of Publishing

A presentation to the ISMTE conference. The argument is that strategy is an integral part of business operations and must be used to measure all activity within an organization. A three-step process for strategic planning is included. Continue reading

Curation Nation: Thoughts on the Future of Textbooks

Is there a role for a curated, remixing approach to developing next generation textbooks. Robert Harington investigates the role of curated open textbooks in teaching today’s students, looking at some of the available tools, the way in which instructors utilize such tools, and issues around fair use of content. Continue reading

Locks, Keys, and Firewalls — Why Internet Security Requires Digital, Analog . . . and Diligent Humans

Internet security seems to be crumbling before our eyes, and our media and leaders are not immune and lack a crucial understanding of how vulnerable a totally digital world can be. The answer may lie with analog technologies. Continue reading

Life on the Launch Pad — The Ups and Downs of Product Development, and Why It’s Hard to Achieve Orbit

Product development has surged back into the fore, in both incremental and paradigm-shifting ways. Yet, some cultures still struggle with it, and the need for the right teams and approaches — especially marketing and sales — remains high. Continue reading

For Scholarly Communications, Double-dipping is Double the Fun

The much-maligned practice of “double-dipping,” in which a publisher received revenue from both subscriptions and APCs, is likely to remain with us for some time, as publishers learn to turn APCs into larger and more varied revenue streams, even as they create the impression that the APCs offset subscription costs. Continue reading

Wellcome Money — Involvement with F1000 Opens Door on Sketchy Peer Review, COIs, and Spending Decisions

With a new partnership with F1000, Wellcome embraces sketchy peer review standards, deep conflicts of interest, and financial support of a private, commercial enterprise. Worse, the entire thing seems redundant, avoidable, and unnecessary. Continue reading

Guest Post, Darrell Gunter: Accessibility Is The New Innovation

Darrell Gunter discusses the great opportunities available in making all forms of content accessible to everyone. Continue reading

Detecting (and Stopping) Robot Pirates

Designed to act like humans, pirate robots avoid detection by keeping download requests low, cycling through journals, and jumping from publisher to publisher. Continue reading

Textbooks in Academic Libraries: The Publisher’s Case

This post presents a case for why publishers would want to participate in a program to sell textbooks to academic libraries. The plan would include a means for publishers to retain their profitability, albeit on a lower sales volume, by taking advantage of digital technology and by “repairing” some broken elements in the current marketplace, e.g., the market for used and pirated books. Continue reading

Academic Libraries and the Textbook Taboo: Time to Get Over It?

Has the time come for academic libraries to start thinking seriously about providing textbooks to their student patrons? A few are already doing so–why not more? Continue reading

Brexit: Risks to the Knowledge Economy and the Money Scrum

Last Monday, the British public defied expectations and narrowly voted to leave the European Union. What will be the consequences for the academic community and scholarly communication. Here we look at just two of the potential issues. Continue reading

Copyright, Expectations, and Economics — Can Taylor Swift Help Us Find Our Backbone?

Expectations of free content are entrenched, but artists, authors, and publishers are all hurting because of it. The basic problem? It’s leading to a lack of trust in the future. Continue reading

Libraries May Have Gotten the Privacy Thing All Wrong

What can academic libraries learn from Microsoft’s acquisition of LinkedIn? The aim of this merger is to collect end-user data from corporate accounts. Libraries are facing a similar situation when publishers develop end-user strategies that compromise the privacy of library patrons. Continue reading

Book Review: “Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind” by Yuval Noah Harari

An excellent book about humankind in general holds important fundamental insights for scholarly publishers, editors, and researchers. Continue reading

The Publishing Industry is Mature, but Publishing Companies are Not

While it certainly is the case that scholarly publishing is a mature business, some of the companies operating in this industry have found new avenues for growth by expanding beyond the publication of content into data science. This is an opportunity that is only available to the larger companies with enlightened management. Continue reading

Vitamins, Painkillers, and the Entrepreneurial Library

What does it mean for libraries to be competitive and “entrepreneurial”? And is the very concept a Trojan horse for neoliberalism? Does it matter? Continue reading

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The mission of the Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP) is "[t]o advance scholarly publishing and communication, and the professional development of its members through education, collaboration, and networking." SSP established The Scholarly Kitchen blog in February 2008 to keep SSP members and interested parties aware of new developments in publishing.
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The Scholarly Kitchen is a moderated and independent blog. Opinions on The Scholarly Kitchen are those of the authors. They are not necessarily those held by the Society for Scholarly Publishing nor by their respective employers.