The Libraries publishing program is introducing a new service to the OSU community – conference publishing. We will work with OSU faculty, staff, and students as they organize academic conferences on campus to increase the impact of the conference scholarship. The end result will vary based on the needs and goals of the conference organizers, but could include an open archive of presentations in the Knowledge Bank, or a formal, online proceedings. This is an important strategic initiative for the Libraries, and will provide a valuable service to conference organizers on campus.

Why conference publishing?

The Libraries’ strategic plan (PDF) contains the following initiative under Outreach and Engagement:

Expand University Libraries’ support for publishing journals edited by members of the OSU community and for managing and providing access to papers and presentations generated at conferences hosted by OSU.

This is a strategic priority for the Libraries because part of our mission involves supporting the creation and dissemination of new knowledge by the faculty and students of the university. Conferences are a major venue for sharing scholarship, but often the papers and presentations given are invisible to those not present at the event. Making that work discoverable will contribute to the progress of scholarship while raising the university’s profile as a center of scholarly dialogue.

Previous work in this area

Conference scholarship is not an entirely new area for our team. Through the Knowledge Bank, we provide support for individual OSU faculty who wish to make their papers and presentations available online, and we already host a number of conference archives containing video, slides, and more. We also recently undertook a pilot project using a new software platform called Open Conference Systems – a write-up of which appeared in an earlier post.  Our new conference publishing initiative is built on our existing expertise, but is aimed at more strategic engagement with conference organizers, and will include some new services, as well.

What can we do for you?

 Planning

This is, in some ways, the most important part of our conference publishing program. We can work with you while you plan your conference to figure out what your goals are with regards to the conference scholarship. Some questions we might ask:

  • Do you want to capture every paper or presentation, or would you prefer to highlight a selection of the best ones?
  • Do you want a way to capture the discussions or collaborative work that took place, or just the official program?
  • Would you prefer to share the conference presentations as they were given, or to publish a peer-reviewed volume of edited papers?

Once your goals are established, we will help you devise a plan to reach them.

 Tools

We have tools that can help you:

  • Provide online access to papers, slides, video, and more
  • Accept and review submissions
  • Publish an online proceedings

We can also provide information about copyright and tools to obtain the necessary permissions from presenters.

Cost

Our conference publishing services are free to members of the OSU community. Our compensation is providing open access to conference scholarship, so partners must be willing to make at least some part of the conference output freely available online.

What aren’t we doing?

Our pilot project and the survey we distributed as part of it uncovered a wide variety of needs among conference organizers at OSU, including help managing registrations and registration fees. Supporting those functions is outside the scope of our program as currently envisioned, but we will continue to explore ways we might incorporate some of them in the future, or possible partnerships with other units on campus. We understand that using multiple systems for different aspects of conference planning is a challenge for organizers, and welcome suggestions for better integrating our services with others.

Contact us

To learn more about our conference publishing program, contact Melanie Schlosser, Digital Publishing Librarian, at schlosser.40@osu.edu.