New MIT Press Journal to Debunk Bad COVID-19 Research

“Preprint servers play an increasingly important role in the scholarly publishing landscape. They are a popular platform for researchers to get early feedback on their research. They are also a space where researchers can publish research products and data sets not typically published in traditional journals. The process is fast — publication of open-access research that anyone can read is immediate.

The downside of this open publication system is that sometimes controversial or poor-quality research can garner a lot of attention on social media or in news articles, said Stefano Bertozzi, professor of health policy and management at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Public Health. In the clamor for information about COVID-19, it is easy for misinformation to spread online, he said.

To combat this, MIT Press and the Berkeley School of Public Health are launching a new COVID-19 journal, one that will peer review preprint articles getting a lot of attention — elevating the good research and debunking the bad.

The Rapid Reviews: COVID-19 journal will be led by Bertozzi, who will serve as the first editor in chief. Unlike a traditional journal, authors will not submit their work for review. Instead, the Rapid Reviews team will select and review already-published preprint articles — a publishing model known as an overlay journal.   …”

The MIT Press and UC Berkeley launch Rapid Reviews: COVID-19 · Rapid Reviews COVID-19

“The MIT Press announced today the launch of Rapid Reviews: COVID-19 (RR:C19), an open access, rapid-review overlay journal that will accelerate peer review of COVID-19-related research and deliver real-time, verified scientific information that policymakers and health leaders can use….

Using artificial intelligence tools, a global team will identify promising scholarship in preprint repositories, commission expert peer reviews, and publish the results on an open access platform in a completely transparent process. The journal will strive for disciplinary and geographic breadth, sourcing manuscripts from all regions and across a wide variety of fields, including medicine; public health; the physical, biological, and chemical sciences; the social sciences; and the humanities. RR:C19 will also provide a new publishing option for revised papers that are positively reviewed….”

A Lack of Product-Market Fit: Finding a Place for Open Access Monographs | The MIT Press

“Thanks to a three-year, $850,000 grant from Arcadia, a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin, the MIT Press is performing a broad-based monograph publishing cost analysis and will develop and openly disseminate a durable financial framework and business plan for open access (OA) monographs. The Press, a leader in OA publishing for almost 25 years, will also undertake a pilot program to implement the resulting framework for scholarly front and backlist titles….”

Arcadia Grant Supports the Publication of Open Access Monographs at the MIT Press

“I’m excited to announce that the MIT Press has published its first open access (OA) monographs on the MIT Press Direct platform. Supported by a generous grant from the Arcadia Fund, a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin, the project is part of a larger initiative to explore alternatives to the traditional market-based business model for professional and scholarly works on specialized subjects.

 

In 2019, the MIT Press received a three-year $850,000 grant from the Arcadia Fund to perform a broad-based monograph publishing cost analysis and to develop and openly disseminate a durable financial framework and business plan for OA monographs. As part of the project, the Press will also undertake a pilot program to implement the resulting framework for scholarly front and backlist titles….”

PLOS Joins Other Publishers and Societies in Support of the Proposed White House Policy Regarding Federally Funded Research

Note: PLOS and other prominent organizations delivered the following letter to the Trump Administration on January 17, 2020. We encourage all publishing organizations and scholarly societies who would like to join us in support of OA in the USA to reach out to us at community@plos.org — we can prepare an expanded letter with more signatories as necessary. Please also consider voicing your support on social media with the hashtag #OAintheUSA.

Knowledge Futures Group

“The Knowledge Futures Group is a non-profit technology organization where promising new projects nurtured at knowledge institutions get built to scale and compete with proprietary alternatives.

Founded at MIT, directed by educators, publishers, and technologists, and supported by a consortium of funders and partners, the KFG brings the intelligence and experience of knowledge institutions together with the product development speed and capacity of technology companies.

We build better futures….”

Strong Ideas from MIT Libraries and the MIT Press – MIT Press Podcast

“In this episode, Gita Manaktala, Editorial Director at the MIT Press, and Ellen Finnie, Co-Interim Associate Director for Collections at MIT Libraries, discuss the Ideas series: a hybrid print and open access book series for general readers, that provides fresh, strongly argued, and provocative views of the effects of digital technology on culture, business, government, education, and our lives….”

Strong Ideas from MIT Libraries and the MIT Press – MIT Press Podcast

“In this episode, Gita Manaktala, Editorial Director at the MIT Press, and Ellen Finnie, Co-Interim Associate Director for Collections at MIT Libraries, discuss the Ideas series: a hybrid print and open access book series for general readers, that provides fresh, strongly argued, and provocative views of the effects of digital technology on culture, business, government, education, and our lives….”

Exploring subscriptions to support open-access monographs

“MIT Press published its first open-access book in 1995, but leaders of the university press are still trying to figure out the best way to make more scholarly books available to the public for free….

MIT Press is looking at another route: institutional subscriptions. The press started selling its ebooks directly to libraries through a platform called MIT Press Direct earlier this year. Amy Brand, director of MIT Press, plans to find out whether these libraries would be willing to consider supporting open-access publishing as part of their subscription to paywalled content. This model will be explored as part of a new research project. 

“When I joined the press, I made it a priority to come up with an open-access model that honored both the value of print and the need to disseminate scholarship as broadly as possible,” said Brand. She wants to pursue a model that doesn’t compromise the production value or marketing costs of the press’s titles. She also wants to respect the preferences of individual authors — not all of whom want to publish openly….

MIT Press announced earlier this month that it had secured a three-year $850,000 grant from Arcadia, a charitable fund founded by academics and philanthropists Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin, to conduct a monograph publishing cost analysis and develop a business plan for publishing open-access monographs.

The research will assess whether libraries would be willing to subsidize open-access monograph publishing at MIT Press and develop a subscription model, said Brand. In communication with authors and libraries, the press then hopes to use a large portion of the grant to facilitate a transition to this model. Though MIT Press will be the guinea pig, Brand hopes to share insights and make recommendations so that the model can be scaled and employed at other university presses. The press has commissioned Raym Crow, a senior consultant at SPARC, to assist with the research….”

Open Access Week 2019 | The MIT Press

“The MIT Press has been a leader in open access book publishing for two decades, beginning in 1995 with the publication of William Mitchell’s City of Bits, which appeared simultaneously in print and in a dynamic, open web edition. Over two decades later, we’re still adding books and journals to our collection of open access resources….

In fact, in the year since the last Open Access Week, we have added four new open access journals to our catalog: Data Intelligence, Quantitative Science Studies, Neurobiology of Language, and the Harvard Data Science Review. We also now have 106 open access books available. All of this work is driven by our commitment to ensure the broadest possible access, impact, and audience for the ground-breaking, and frequently field-defining, work of our authors and contributors….”