Exploring Networks of Scholar-Led Publishing Initiatives with a Social Network Analysis of the Radical Open Access Collective | Journal of Scholarly Publishing

Abstract:  What role do networks play during the digital transformation of the scholarly publishing system? This article depicts sociospatial practices and its strategic relevance for stakeholders being involved within the Open Access community. The aim is to explore networks of scholar-led publishing initiatives and to facilitate an extended understanding of the scholarly publishing system in transition by thinking it through with sociospatial theory from a Lefebvrian perspective. As a case study, the Radical Open Access Collective (ROAC) with more than 70 members is explored in a mixed methods research design. The focus of the qualitatively-driven research is the Collective’s sociospatial strategies e.g. networking and multiscalar activities. A systematic literature research and interviews with experts in the field of scholar-led publishing provide the main data set, being triangulated with desk-based research on the ROAC. The results show networking processes on three different levels building on a social network analysis. Moreover, this article contributes to a deeper understanding of a network of scholar-led publishers indicating key sociospatial strategies considering dialectics of scalability. Concluding, this study emphasises the importance of sociospatial strategies for non-profit publishing initiatives in order to create a knowledge commons around open and equitable infrastructures.



Publizieren in der Medienwissenschaft — Andreas Kirchner über Open Access als Standard | Open Media Studies

by Andreas Kirchner

englisch version via gTranslate:

I recently noticed that the editors of the journal MEDIENwissenschaft: Reviews | Reviews has started to specifically mark Open Access publications that are subject to review – a clear indication of a change in media studies publication practice. In book list 4/22, 64 out of 186 titles, a third of all publications listed there, bear the new “OA” abbreviation. This is not a bad rate, especially considering that the open access transformation of books has only picked up speed in recent years. The spectrum of the 19 publishers that published the books is enormous: imprints from the multinational publishing groups SpringerNature and Taylor & Francis are represented as well as various university presses or small scientific and non-fiction publishers such as Büchner or Frank & Timme. The Bielefelder transcript-Verlag occupies a special position, which in recent years has been particularly committed to establishing Open Access in German-language media studies: 17 OA books on the “Book List” have been published there alone. In this illustrious circle, the name of a publishing house can be found – and that at least four times -meson press .


Technology Justice Bookstand | Radical Open Access

by Janneke Adema, Simon Bowie, Rebekka Kiesewetter

Based on the theme of this year’s Centre for Postdigital Cultures (CPC) conference, the Post-Publishing research strand within the CPC have curated a selection of openly available publications from members of the Radical Open Access Collective (ROAC) and have brought these together as part of a virtual conference bookstand, which allows conference participants to access further readings around the themes that the conference addresses. This bookstand is based on the model used previously for the ROAC Virtual Book stand: https://radicaloa.disruptivemedia.org.uk/latest-publications/

In 2018, ScholarLed developed a collaborative bookstand to cross-promote the publications of the presses within the consortium, highlighting the ideals and values that sustain their projects: open access, not-for-profit and scholar-led publishing, experimentation, and an ethics of care. The aim of this bookstand (which has subsequently been adopted and adapted by the ROAC) is to advocate these forms of publishing within academic communities in order to showcase the existence of alternative models for open access publishing. ScholarLed and ROAC want to use this to make a public and political statement about how not-for-profit presses can start to collaborate through these kinds of projects.

Through this virtual bookstand we hope to offer an alternative to the promotion of publications at in-person events. Now that academic conferences are being increasingly held in a virtual or hybrid form, we have adapted the bookstand to function online, imagining a virtual book stand that enables the sharing of new publications with attendees across the globe. We’ve also taken care to include non-English language publications and publications from authors in the Global South to highlight the range of research that open access can enable.


The Radical Open Access Collective: Building Better Knowledge Commons | David Bollier

The general public may not give much thought to how scientists and scholars publish their work, but please know that it matters. Like so much else in the world, corporate markets have colonized this space, which means that turning business profits is the primary goal, not the easy, affordable sharing of knowledge.

Commercial academic publishers have long privatized and monetized academic research, which over time has resulted in an oligopoly of a few publishers able to charge exorbitant prices for their books and journal subscriptions. The impact has been greatest on researchers in the Global South and at smaller, less affluent colleges and universities, where it is harder to access and share the latest scientific and scholarly research.

The most spirited response has come from the open access publishing movement. Open access, or OA, got its start twenty years ago as a way to publish academic books, journals, and other research that can be readily shared and copied. This was a break from the traditional publishing models that allowed major corporations to take researchers’ copyrights and convert the fruits of academic commons into expensive proprietary products.

Open access not only helps scientists, scholars, and students build on the work of those who came before them. It assures a basic fairness — to the academic fields that generated the knowledge in the first place, and to taxpayers who often pay (via the government) for research in science, medicine, and the humanities. Why should corporate publishers get to own the copyrights and privatize the gains of publicly funded research and public universities?

To explore the state of open access publishing today, I spoke recently with Sam Moore, an organizer with the Radical Open Access Collective on my Frontiers of Commoning podcast (episode #25). Moore is also a scholarly communications specialist at Cambridge University Library in England, and a research associate at Homerton College.

My interview digs into the oligopoly control of academic publishing, the high prices of academic journals and books, the lack of choices among many scientists and scholars, the limited leadership of university administrations, and some open-access innovations now being developed.

Radical Open Access: Experiments in (Post-)Publishing Symposium, 1 October 2021 Boulder, Colorado

With the demise of traditional gatekeepers, we are witnessing the rapid rise of alternative modes of both scholarly publishing and distribution as well as the artistic exhibition of computer generated works of art in digital environments. The rise of open access and collaborative platforms are in fact blurring the distinctions between publishing as a significant force of cultural activity in both contemporary art and leading-edge academic venues.

In this context, the symposium will question the current corporatized systems of academic publishing and the commercial-driven art museum and upmarket gallery systems, as well as serve as a forum to interrogate new models of collective action for collaborating on, creating, and sharing scholarship and art. This event has been organised in collaboration with the Post-Publishing programme (https://www.post-publishing.org) at the Centre for Postdigital Cultures (Coventry University, UK), and forms part of a series of symposia exploring contemporary approaches to experimental publishing.

The Radical Open Access: Experiments in (Post-)Publishing Symposium will be a hybrid event, with a mix of remote and onsite participation at the University of Colorado Boulder on Friday, 1 October 2021. This event will be followed by a “Clinic for Open Source Arts (COSA).”

Light breakfast, refreshments and lunch will be provided. We look forward to seeing you there!