Thursday, July 30, 2009
University presses work together to explore collaborative e-book program
A recent article from the Chronicle of Higher Education discusses how four university presses - New York University Press, the University of Pennsylvania Press, Rutgers University Press, and Temple University Press - are working together to research the idea of a collaborative e-book program. According to Marlie Wasserman, director of the Rutgers University Press, the idea came about after realizing that many university presses were having separate conversations on how to make the transition to digital. Wasserman commented, “No one was really harnessing the power of numbers.” The research is being funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and aims to determine the cost and technical requirements associated with producing and selling e-books. The group would like to be able to provide a one-stop site that offers e-books from many university presses and also gives individual scholars and institutional buyers a place to purchase e-books. Wasserman added, "If we come up with a solution that works for us but not for anyone else, it will fall flat." The article notes that since this project was announced, many university presses have inquired about how they could become involved.