Charleston Briefings: Trending Topics for Information Professionals is a thought-provoking series of brief books concerning innovation in the sphere of libraries, publishing, and technology in scholarly communication. The briefings, growing out of the vital conversations characteristic of the Charleston Conference and Against the Grain, will offer valuable insights into the trends shaping our professional lives and the institutions in which we work.
The Charleston Briefings are written by authorities who provide an effective, readable overview of their topics—not an academic monograph. The intended audience is busy nonspecialist readers who want to be informed concerning important issues in our industry in an accessible and timely manner.
Why are so many libraries going into the publishing business at a time when scholarly publishing is facing so many challenges?
Publishing, after all, is a complex business, and the trend in the marketplace is to economies of scale and the consolidation of smaller publishers into the fold of the largest. It does not seem a propitious moment for a library to become a small independent publisher.
So why are libraries doing this? How is this similar or different from the services commercial publishers provide? Does it involve offering the same services, or are new models, types of content, and needs resulting in new solutions that suit new players?
This book will help the reader understand the context of library publishing. It also explores when a publishing program is a good fit for a library and provides guidance for defining, launching, or growing a publishing initiative.
Sarah Lippincott is a librarian and consultant specializing in scholarly communication and digital scholarship. She served as the inaugural program director for the Library Publishing Coalition, a community-led membership association whose mission is to support a broad range of publishing activities in academic and research libraries. She received her MSLS from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her BA in the College of Letters and in French Studies from Wesleyan University. As a consultant, she has worked on strategic planning and communications for the Harvard Library, the Association of Research Libraries, SPARC, and the open access journal eLife.