UW Libraries Blog

October 22, 2019

UW Press and Libraries Collaborate on Open-Access Books

UW Libraries

Reposted from UW Press Blog 10/21/2019

From October 21st to 27th, the University of Washington Press will be highlighting its open-access publications and partnerships as part of International Open Access Week.

UW Press and Libraries Collaborate on Open-Access Books

photos of open access books from UW press

Thanks to a new partnership between UW Press and Libraries and a grant from the Kenneth S. and Faye G. Allen Library Endowment Transformation Fund, many books in the press’s long-standing and award-winning series Studies on Ethnic Groups in China (SEGC) are now openly available.

UW Libraries’ support for the initiative is part of its larger commitment to open and emerging forms of scholarship. Betsy Wilson, Vice Provost for Digital Initiatives and Dean of University Libraries, explained that “the UW Libraries’ strategic plan prioritizes the advancement of research for the public good. We are living this commitment by investing in infrastructure and developing publishing resources to support open-access scholarship in all forms. Our staff are constantly working to expand support for all UW authors who publish openly and to assist students and faculty in navigating open-access opportunities.”

Edited by UW professor of anthropology Stevan Harrell, SEGC presents research from a wide variety of disciplines on ethnic groups and ethnic relations in China. Anthropologists, historians, geographers, political scientists, and literary scholars have contributed works on minority ethnic groups from various regions of China, as well as on the majority Han and their relationships with other groups. Works are both historical and contemporary and cover topics ranging from identity, local relations, folk literature, and religion to medicine, governance, education, and economic development.

“I’m delighted that UW Press has selected Studies on Ethnic Groups in China as its first book series to go online in open-access format,” said Harrell. “This makes our books available to a wider public. In addition, using the Manifold platform gives authors, editors, and readers the opportunity to publish supplementary material, make comments, and see some of our authors’ gorgeous photographs in full color.”

Manifold is a new publishing platform developed by the University of Minnesota Press, CUNY GC Digital Scholarship Lab, and Cast Iron Coding and funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. In addition, SEGC books will be hosted on several other platforms including the UW Libraries ResearchWorks, JSTOR, MUSE Open, HathiTrust, and OAPEN.

UW Press Director Nicole Mitchell commented on the project’s early success: “We’ve been pleased to see that readers have accessed the open editions from at least 105 countries so far, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. We’re grateful for the support of the Allen Transformation Fund and fortunate that in launching our first open-access books, we’ve been able to draw on services like JSTOR and Project MUSE that have built strong global networks for scholarship, as well as the work of colleagues at Minnesota and other university presses involved in developing new infrastructure, processes, and standards for open-access monograph publishing.”

What Is International OA Week?

This year’s OA Week theme, “Open for Whom? Equity in Open Knowledge,” builds on the groundwork laid by last year’s focus, “Designing Equitable Foundations for Open Knowledge,” which highlighted the importance of making a central commitment to equity as we develop new systems for sharing knowledge.

The Allen Transformation Fund grant, awarded to “facilitate the transition towards open publishing models,” promotes equitable access not only by making the SEGC books available to readers across the globe, but also by enabling all authors in the series to make their books openly available regardless of their institutional affiliations or resources.

In addition, UW Libraries works with providers like Manifold to address the accessibility of open-access tools for all users. Working collaboratively with UW Libraries and UW Accessible IT, the Manifold team significantly improved accessibility features in the platform, helping to ensure open access for all.

OA Week on Campus

UW Libraries is hosting special events and information sessions during Open Access Week. This year’s theme, “Open for Whom?,” invites us to consider equity in open access.

 Accessibility Pop-Up Tables – Explore your favorite websites using assistive technologies to better understand the everyday experiences of disabled members of our community.

  • Tuesday, Oct. 22, noon–2:00 p.m. outside the HUB if the weather is good, inside the HUB if the weather is bad
  • Wednesday, Oct. 23, noon–2:00 p.m. in the Allen Library Research Commons

 Copyright and Creative Commons Licenses – If you need photos, music, or other media for a project and are unsure about copyright restrictions, join us for this one-hour primer. Learn how the Creative Commons helps creators share and use media.

  • Tuesday, Oct. 22, 3:00–4:00 p.m. in the Allen Library Research Commons
  • Wednesday, Oct. 23, 3:00–4:00 p.m. in the Allen Library Research Commons

 Open Media – This Guide to Open Resources will connect you with media you can use without charge.

 Open Educational Resources (OER) – See this Guide to OER to learn how to find and create open textbooks and courses.

Open Access at UW Press – Finally, be sure to check out the open editions of SEGC books as well as the Digital Projects page of the UW Press website for more information about the press’s open-access work.

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