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.

A Multiplicity of University Publishing

There continue to be calls to consolidate all publishing activity in a single organization or unit. The various participants in scholarly communications often are hostile to the very idea of competition. But the evidence is otherwise: a diversity of publishing venues, all operated independently, yield better and more innovative results.

For Libraries the Future Is a Foreign Country

A new essay by Rick Anderson proposes that libraries begin to focus more strongly on special collections and migrate away from the collection of commodity content. This would have a dramatic impact on the structure of the marketplace for scholarly materials and would be more disruptive than anything currently being bandied about. That may not be a bad thing.