Kenyon College Founding Member of Open-Access Publishing Initiative
September 13, 2016 - 10:17 AM
GAMBIER, Ohio — Kenyon College is a founding member of Lever Press,
an alternative publishing initiative designed to give academics more
opportunities to publish their work and students more ability to access
The peer-reviewed press will allow
scholars, particularly at liberal arts colleges, to publish their work
without the prohibitive fees normally associated with academic
publishing. Because participating libraries, not authors, will be
covering all publishing expenses, works will be accepted based on their
scholarly merit, not on the author’s ability to pay publishing fees. The
press is digitally native, allowing for innovative multimedia projects
and more experimental works.
“We believe that open-access
initiatives and opportunities are beneficial to education and
scholarship for Kenyon students and also for larger communities,” said
Amy Badertscher, associate vice president for Library and Information
Services and library director at Kenyon College. “Organizations like
Lever Press are paving the way for the future of scholarship, and we are
investing in that future.”
Titles published by Lever Press will
be available in print for a small cost and for free online, both as
downloadable files and as screen-readable webpages. The press plans to
produce about 60 titles by the end of 2020.
Members of the
Oberlin Group, a consortium of 80 libraries at liberal arts colleges
including Kenyon, partnered with the Amherst College Press and Michigan
Publishing at the University of Michigan to launch Lever Press out of
concern that restrictions on access to scholarly materials was
exacerbating a trend toward inequality in the availability of resources
for students and researchers.
“It shouldn’t be the case that
only the wealthiest institutions can afford to purchase the best and
most recent books addressing issues and fields at the heart of our
campuses,” said Mike Roy, the president of the Lever Press oversight
committee and dean of libraries at Middlebury College. “And as
publishers increasingly request processing fees and subsidies for
articles and book-length works, it shouldn’t be that only scholars at
the best-resourced institutions get a chance to get published.”
supporting institutions, including Allegheny College and Ursinus
College, which are not members of the Oberlin Group, have committed to
collectively fund the press with more than $1 million total over the
next five years. Michigan Publishing will undertake the publishing
process with help from a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
For more information on Kenyon’s involvement with Lever Press,
contact Amy Badertscher, Associate Vice President for Library and
Information Services and Library Director, at email@example.com.
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