COPIM Libraries & Publishers UK Workshop, June 16, 2020

Photo by Roman Kraft on Unsplash.

How can libraries and publishers shape the future of Open Access books

Participating stakeholders:

external: Southern Universities Purchasing Consortium, University of York, University of Cambridge, University of Sussex, University of Salford, Maynooth University, Birkbeck, University of London, Loughborough University (plus other institutional representatives who have chosen to remain anonymous in project outputs)

internal: Lancaster University, Mattering Press, Trinity College, University of Cambridge, Open Book Publishers, punctum books, Coventry University, Jisc


COPIM (Community-Led Open Publishing Infrastructures for Monographs) is a 3-year project funded by Research England and Arcadia, that will develop and build the critical underlying modular components to support the sustainable publication of open access (OA) books, including infrastructures, business models, governance procedures, re-use strategies, preservation structures, and outreach programs. These systems and infrastructures will be open and collectively managed for the common good. Towards this end, COPIM aims to develop a significantly enriched not-for-profit and open source ecosystem for OA book publishing that will support and sustain a diversity of publishing initiatives and models, particularly in humanities and social sciences publishing.

Project aims:

COPIM intends to set up an open, community-led and controlled platform for libraries and presses to support one another, a structure which we want to develop together with the community of stakeholders (academics, publishers, librarians, researchers, and knowledge managers) that will be involved in and will be supporting and relying on the infrastructures, workflows and systems that COPIM will create for open access monographs. We want to emphasize horizontalist and cooperative knowledge-sharing endeavours between communities of professional-public academic practice.

Workshop aims:

This was the second workshop in a series of three, and unlike the other two, focused on the UK context.

As with the other workshops, the outcome of this workshop will be the establishment of a working group for (a) the long-term development of a consortial library funding platform, and (b) the identification and fostering of library-publisher experiments and projects that emphasise horizontal and cooperative knowledge-sharing between stakeholders (e.g. librarians, publishers, and researchers).

The workshop is organized around the following three themes:

  1. What do libraries want to achieve by supporting Open Access books/infrastructures?

  2. What financial models might best support the integration of Open Access books into libraries?

  3. What governance structures and practices are required to ensure the sustainability of these efforts?