OpenEdition: PKP’s first European sponsor

pkp_logo_vert3OpenEdition is proud to support the Canadian project PKP (Public Knowledge Project) and thereby contribute to the development of open source solutions for digital publishing. This partnership demonstrates the shared vision of OpenEdition and PKP to promote open access academic and scientific publishing by providing innovative and scalable professional solutions.

OpenEdition’s digital publishing platforms, OpenEdition Books, and Calenda, are run using Lodel, an online content management software (CMS) designed specifically for the digital publication of long and complex texts within a highly structured editorial environment. This solution has been adopted by 400 journals and 35 academic publishers. OpenEdition intends to strengthen and complement its provision of services in terms of editorial workflow thanks to the open source solutions developed by PKP: OJS (Open Journal Systems) and OMP (Open Monograph Press).

Translated into 32 languages, OJS makes it easier for members of international editorial teams to collaborate. It allows academic journals to manage the different phases of editing a manuscript, while improving the organization and efficiency of the editorial process. Building on the success of OJS, PKP has continued to innovate, and in 2013 released the OMP software. Aimed at university presses and academic publishers, the software provides a clear and intuitive workflow for organizing all the different stages of submitting manuscripts and revising, editing and producing books.

Key aspects of the partnership:

  • OpenEdition contributes to the evolution of features of PKP’s editorial workflow management solutions by participating in the OMP Early Adopters program.

  • OpenEdition contributes to the translation of interfaces and user documentation into French.

  • As a Bronze sponsor, OpenEdition provides financial support to PKP and becomes a member of its commission of partners.


The Public Knowledge Project is a collective of academics, librarians and technical experts that, since 1998, has been building free, open source software publishing platforms which provide an alternative to commercial and subscription-based routes to scholarly communication. Its various digital platforms provide a guided path through the editorial workflow of submission, review, editing, publishing and indexing. PKP is best known for developing and maintaining Open Journal Systems, Open Monograph Press and Open Conference Systems. The project’s goal from the outset was to find ways of increasing public and global access to research and scholarship. As such, it was an early participant in the open access movement that seeks to develop ways of creating peer-reviewed journals that do not charge readers for access to their content. PKP continues to be a major actor in the scholarly publishing community.


OpenEdition ( brings together four complementary publication and information platforms for the humanities and social sciences: OpenEdition Books (books series),  (academic journals), Hypothèses (research blogs), Calenda (academic announcements). These four platforms constitute a complete infrastructure for academic communication. Since 2011 OpenEdition has proposed a commercial programme for open access content, OpenEdition Freemium, to libraries and university institutions. OpenEdition is developed by the Center for Open Electronic Publishing (Cléo), an initiative supported by the French Ministry of Research and four prestigious academic institutions: the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), Aix-Marseille University (AMU), the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) and Avignon and Vaucluse University. In 2012, OpenEdition received the Label Equipex future investment award.

OpenEdition has a longstanding policy to partner with and support open access and open source initiatives. To this end, OpenEdition is a member of OASPA (Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association), Sparc Europe (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition) and CenterNet (an international network of digital humanities centers). It provides financial support to the DOAJ (Directory of Open Access Journals), Framasoft (a French network dedicating to promoting open software) and the AFUL (Association Francophone des Utilisateurs de Logiciels Libres).

Read this post in French

German publisher C.H.Beck joins OpenEdition Books for open access publishing

OpenEdition is pleased to announce the arrival of German publisher C.H.Beck on OpenEdition Books, the digital platform for open access academic publishing. C.H.Beck collections will be available on OpenEdition Books in April 2014.

The C.H.Beck catalogue on OpenEdition will initially include around 30 books drawn from its classical studies series (Zetemata: Monographien zur klassischen Altertumswissenschaft) and papyrus studies series (Münchener Beiträge zur Papyrusforschung und antiken Rechtsgeschichte). Two-thirds of the books will come from the classical studies series, which examines topics such as philology, history, epistemology and theology in the works of writers and philosophers of Ancient Greece and Rome. The papyrus studies series contributes to scholarship on the law, politics, economy and administration of ancient civilisations, notably the Ptolemaic and Hellenistic periods.

Most of the books will be available in Open Access Freemium: free HTML, with PDF, ePub and eReader formats available exclusively to subscribing institutions and through digital bookstores.


C.H.Beck is one of Germany’s oldest and most prestigious publishing houses. It has a backlist of more than 9,000 titles and 70 journals, covering disciplines as diverse as law, history, theology, classical studies, literary scholarship, and economics. Based in Munich, the company also has offices in Warsaw, Prague, Basel, Bucharest and Bratislava. It has been publishing electronic publications since the late 1980s.

OpenEdition is a leading digital portal for the humanities and social sciences. Run by the Centre for Open Electronic Publishing (Cléo) and supported by major research organisations, its four publishing platforms – (journals), Hypotheses (academic blogs), Calenda (calls and announcements), OpenEdition Books (monographs and multi-author works) – receive almost 3 million visits a month. Launched in early 2013, OpenEdition Books provides access to over 1000 publications from 27 international publishers.


Lisa George, Communication Officer (English, French) / +33 (0)4 13 55 03 46

Dr Andrea Brill, Ansprechpartnerin C.H.Beck (German) / +49 (0)89 381 89 337

Berlin 11 – Future challenges and the final debate

Elena Giglia, our guest editor and head of Torino University’s open access programme, gives a round-up of final talks at the Berlin 11 conference.

John Willinsky talking at Berlin 11. Photo by Elena Giglia.

John Willinsky talking at Berlin 11. Photo by Elena Giglia.

The future challenges that emerged from the session that saw the presentations of John Willinsky, Nicholas Canny, Manfred Laubichler, and Nick Shockey, can be clustered into four threads.

Key aspects – fixed points

  • “Inclusion” is the core: excellence is not about whom we are able to exclude or reject, but whom we are able to include.
  • Responsibility is the keyword: we have a big responsibility in educating people that openness is a right.
  • OA has played and still plays a transformative role in the changing framework of research and education.
  • OA can allow and foster interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity, breaking down disciplinary silos in order to tackle key planetary issues like climate change.
  • New core competences for young researchers should be taken into account: how to navigate, authenticate what they find, integrate different kind of information, innovate.
  • There is an imperative need to empower the next generation of researchers.

How to reach OA

  • The new perspective should be: paying for services, not for content.
  • “One size fits all” is not a suitable approach to attain effective OA, especially in the humanities and social Sciences. There is still the need to find viable solutions fitting each scientific community and its communication habits, with particular attention to books.
  • Silos must be opened and content spread and linked.
  • Open access should keep pace with open data.
  • From an economic point of view: the money (too much money, actually) is already on the table in the scholarly communication system right now. Let’s move it and reallocate according to different criteria and models. There’s no need for further funding.


  • There are increasing concerns about long-term preservation and its adequate funding.
  • Outdated infrastructure, wrong incentive structure, misleading expectations.
  • How to manage the increasing demand for change coming from young researchers in the humanities and social sciences, who are not satisfied with the current criteria in tenure and an unsatisfactory incentive framework.

It’s important at this point to add a quotation by Erin McKinnon, cited by Nick Shockey:

“If publishing in open access journals costs me my career, then this is not the career I want. Period.”


  • New metrics: find out the extent to which an author is central in his/her discipline, by visualizing co-authoring, downloads and citations.
  • Put Open Access and openness itself at the centre of education: teach children that access is a right.
  • Train teachers to use and re-use open educational resources.
  • Let’s define Intellectual Property associated with scientific works as a distinct class of IP, as scholarly communication has different underlying logics, and sharing is imperative.
  • signal Open Access resources in Wikipedia, to be freely accessed by readers.

The Open Access Button initiative (, a new tool developed by young researchers, deserves particular attention.  In their words:

“People are denied access to research hidden behind paywalls every day. This problem is invisible, but it slows innovation, kills curiosity and harms patients. Open Access Button is a safe, easy to use browser bookmarklet that you can use to show the global effects of research paywalls – and to help get access to the research you need. Every time you hit a paywall blocking your research, click the button. Fill out a short form, add your experience to the map along with thousands of others. Then use our tools to search for access to papers, and spread the word with social media. Every person who uses the Open Access Button brings us closer to changing the system.”

Important open access players Cameron Neylon and Robert Schlögl spoke at Berlin 11′s final talk.

It was a pleasant way to summarise and point out many themes that had emerged during the two days of debate.

  • Knowledge as a common good is the principle.
  • The main assumption is that Open Access is feasible and can make a better world.
  • The aim is for researchers to regain possession of and control over their works.

The suggestion is to find new paths and models – including business models – which do not exactly replicate or do what we were doing in the paper-based 19th century, and bear in mind that Open Access is about knowledge dissemination and not revenues, and that research is about discovering and communicating, sharing discoveries, and not about citations and evaluation.

There are still open issues such as quality assurance, standards, funding, and awareness-raising about the benefits of Open Access. There are also positive signs like the increasing number of open access policies, both at institutional and national level, and the increasing number of people involved in the open access debate, all with new expertise and fresh ideas. There is an effective tool, the web, to be fully exploited in order to communicate and provide unprecedented services and tools to boost research and discovery.

On the path towards openness, scientific communities must be assured that the greatest freedom comes from choosing their channels of communication.

In order to achieve the final goal, the top-down approach – in terms of mandatory policies and institutional support – needs to keep apace with a bottom-up one, in terms of authors’ involvement and awareness, all the more so among young generations of researchers.

There is a technical must: interoperability.

Then there is a political must: consistency.

And finally a strategic must: harmonization of efforts and cooperation.

Peter Gruss, president of the Max Planck Society, in his closing remarks, urged us to fulfill the revolution started ten years ago with the Berlin Declaration, which has changed the scholarly communication landscape. He ensured the support of the Max Planck Society to the movement and to the Berlin conference series, to be held each other year starting from now. So, the appointment is made for the next Berlin, in 2015.

The global perspective: OA at work

Elena Giglia, head of the open access programme at Torino University, describes the talks at the third session of Berlin 11.

The third session of Berlin 11 was dedicated to good practices worldwide. The common thread was a sort of pride in the achievements made against all odds in a scholarly communication environment often hostile to innovations and paradigm changes.

Sely Costa presented the Brazilian efforts towards open archives and open journals, pointing out some quality issues. She insisted on a dual approach: top-down from politicians and governing institutions, to ensure viability and support; bottom-up from authors and librarians, or better “seductive librarians”, who explain copyright issues and relay increases in downloads statistics, an argument all faculties are very sensitive to. A particular case is master and doctoral theses, now available and downloaded worldwide, which was something unimaginable without Open Access.

Marin  Dacos presented OpenEdition, please see the specific post.

Robert Darnton started his talk with a slogan: “Digitize, democratize” and a claim: “Open the libraries! If in Europe often libraries are surrounded by walls and are secluded, in the US the library stands at the center of the campus, stemming intellectual energy everywhere around. Library is the core of the university. This is the ideal pattern to follow in order to disseminate, and Harvard is making that suitable for the digitized world, going open by setting up an Institutional Repository and unanimously adopting a mandate to deposit. Faculties have committed to rendering their work public, and the first feedback they have received is the huge increase in readers they have in OA. After going for green OA, Harvard also created a central fund for supporting gold OA.

Professor Darnton then told the idealistic and at the same time pragmatic history of the Digital Public Library of America (, aimed at giving universal access to American cultural heritage. It started like a dream, or a utopia, then the project took shape by putting together a coalition of foundations for money, and of libraries for books. After huge web discussion about technological and legal issues, with all debaters doing it for free, the library went online in April 2013 and succeeded.

An analogous project suddenly comes to mind, Google books, which started at the wrong pace in terms of copyright issues and now, after years of debate and the Settlement in place, is no more than a commercial library, where libraries have to buy again the content they gave away for free. It’s a new kind of monopoly, as in the publishing domain.

DPLA was better designed to deal both with copyright, asking authors directly for permission to use their works, and  the interoperability framework, particularly in connection with Europeana ( As for biodiversity, around one third of the content is in a language different from English, and many of the downloads come from outside the US.

DPLA works as a distributed system which leads with one click to the desired content. The motto “free for all” that you can read sculpted on many libraries’ entrances, also applies to this huge virtual collection of more than 5 million products. The logic is definitely horizontal, not top down, as the new library connects to digital collections that already exist in the US and empowers them; one of the most useful and actually used tools for this purpose are APIs as well as the DPLA Bookshelf, which allows for visual browsing.

DLPA has had an immediate transformative effect on education since its launch: dropout rates in schools are slowing down considerably. DPLA is not a digital version of the Library of Congress, it’s a completely new kind of knowledge hub, available for free.

For the first time in history, Darnton notes, we can shape the future as we can make our cultural heritage available in advance for future generations.

Daniel Mutonga, from Kenya, illustrated all the advocacy and training strategies put in place by students, who have played a central role in the advancement of OA in Africa, against limits due to lack of infrastructure, inadequate literacy and reading levels, and scarce support by government. In Africa the paywall to access is still high, so students are in the first line advocating openness by using all the instruments offered by the net – such as social media, webinars, and so on, and by themselves producing OA content.

Xiaolin Zhang underlined the strong sense of responsibility in China nowadays in order to enable access to Chinese research and open up cooperation. He showed all the strategies and actions set to promote OA, green and gold, and the current activity in creating awareness and promoting and supporting OA initiatives in repositories and journals. By law, all publicly funded research publications have to be deposited after one year.

The UK minister David Willetts, scheduled for the day before but detained in London by official duties, opened his speech stating that knowledge has always been the leverage of any revolution or change in society, hence the capital importance of knowledge dissemination and access to information. Even though the internet has dramatically changed ways of disseminating knowledge, there are still barriers to access. The UK is committed to getting past these barriers. Open Access being on the political agenda for a long time, the UK government commissioned a study on viability of the green and the gold road to OA.  The so-called “Finch Report”, with a clear preference for immediate, paid gold OA has fully been endorsed by the government, and then the RCUK conformed  to this report. This gold OA choice, which arose strong opposition and a thorough debate among both the OA community and English researchers themselves, has received thousands of pounds in funding.

The choice of going for gold has, according to Willetts, a rationale against green OA, which is cheaper but lacks in quality, and it’s not immediate due to embargo periods. Willetts’ opinion is that publishers add value, and their work must be paid for, so the gold road makes sense because it recognizes that work has gone in to publishing the paper; moreover, it has a zero embargo period by default. Again according to Willetts, green OA would jeopardise the whole scholarly publication system. In order not to limit authors’ autonomy in choosing their publication venue, the UK government also supports hybrid journals (giving full satisfaction to commercial publishers). An open issue is, of course, the calculation of fees for UK institutions, trying to balance subscription rates and Article Processing Charges on the basis of actual production. Moreover, a survey is being conducted about competition in the commercial publishers’ market and price adaptation to the new market demand.

Willetts ended with a strong call for cooperation at the international level: we set the goals ten years ago; now the scientific community has to work jointly to reach them.

Berlin 11 – Celebrating 10 years of Open Access

This week, Elena Giglia, head of the open access programme at Torino University, is our guest editor. OpenEdition team invited her to give an account of the Berlin 11 conference. Here’s her post about the first day.

Photo by Elena Giglia, 19 November 2013.

Photo by Elena Giglia, 19 November 2013.

10 years on, the Berlin Open Access conference is being held again in Berlin, to celebrate the Berlin Declaration ten years ago.

As pointed out by the opening remarks, in the last few years Open Access has contributed to important shifts in the scholarly communication framework, and has fostered a common rethinking of the whole scientific communication chain, enabling dialogue between all the players involved. OA means fast and worldwide dissemination, no barriers to access, new metrics about impact linked to each single paper, new techniques like text and data mining: in a word, OA boosts knowledge transfer and thus the creation of new knowledge. OA should be the currency in scholarly communication nowadays, but it still is not, because of lack of awareness and moreover a resistance to change, both among researchers and libraries. OA implies in fact a paradigm shift in workflows as well as in funding allocations.

New initiatives like eLife demonstrate that new forms of cooperation between funding agencies, authors and journal scientific editors are possible, and that, actually, “publication is just the beginning”, as is stated on the eLife website. In the path towards OA no author or institution can walk alone and there is a need for cooperation, mutual support and alliances. This is all the more true at the political level, where the keyword is “work in unison” to coordinate the efforts.

The first session of the conference, “Open Access on the political agenda”, was intended as an overview of recent developments in this direction.

In Germany Georg Schutte showed how research and development are seen by the government as a priority for the future of the country.  OA could be the tool for scientific result dissemination. The recent law on copyright is a first step, a door opened to research access; it needs improvements, i.e. opening the door further and further in order to make OA the standard in scientific communication.

From the French perspective, Roger Genet underlined the importance of access at three levels: political, for an evidence-based and informed decision-making process; economical, as a better return on investments in research; scientific, for faster progress. France is working for a national plan towards access, in order to move from open access to open science.

Open Science and openness to publications and data played a central role in Neelie Kroes’ political agenda at the European Commission, as reported by Carl Cristian Buhr. Openness allows for examining, comparing, making new hypotheses and thus advancing. Openness is also a way to do justice both to the potential of the web and to the European taxpayers whoses taxes fund research. For science itself, “sharing” has always been the keyword, and ought to be so in the future the keyword, bearing in mind that in this domain there is no “one size fits all” solution. In any case, sharing is the pillar of any possible future open science. The idea that investing in the future of a new science is the best way to support the economy is the basis of the EU’s strong committment to openness, which applies not only to publications but also to data (not only academic data, but also public sector data, which can be exploited by apps or value-added service providers).

Heather Joseph went through the recent US developments in Open Access policies and politics focusing on driving factors. The main driver is investment coming from taxpayers, as taxpayers expect a return in terms of knowledge advances that are potentially useful for society itself, knowledge creation being an incremental process based on results. Access to results in the form of Open Access is clearly the basis of this whole process.

The Obama directive of February 2013 is a milestone as it addresses not only the access issue but also the question of re-use. All the stakeholders are now involved in discussion of the directive and its translation, in order to have sustainable embargo periods, re-use licences and the correct preservation policies: there’s still a long way to do, but the achievement is that Open Access has taken a consistent place on the national US political agenda.

The second session tried to depict “Where are we today?” from four different perspectives.

Glyn Moody approached openness from the perspective of the history of open source software. Linux, used by supercomputers, Google, and all the social networks proved that distributed, collaborative development works, that freely sharing worked better than hoarding and that, once digital, knowledge can be shared infinitely. Sharing is a sort of moral imperative. In Open Access, with the trigger being public availability of publicly funded research, the goal must be immediate access, with a ZEN approach, where ZEN stands for Zero Embargo Now. Big profits for publishers is not an argument to closing access to the majority of the world’s citizens. Publishers should make revenues from services offered in addition to content, not from the content itself, which in a digital world can be distributed at virtually zero or low expenses. The case of Red Hat, which generated billions in revenue, has to be looked at as good new business and a paradigm-shift model. Scholarly communication and the publishing system needs this sort of paradigm change in order to complete the revolution started ten years ago.

Ulrich Poeschl showed that OA is essential for an epistemic web, i.e. a web of knowledge. Open Access not only ensures access to content, but also enables and enhances old traditions like peer review. Public peer review, as conducted by the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics and followers can combine quick access and thorough examination; new approaches like PLoS post-publication review are also innovative ways to exploit the potential of the web, bearing in mind that each time you correctly use the web it is always a win-win situation for all. A shift towards new forms of access and a new way of publishing is needed. Many models in OA have proven to be sustainable, so the vision for the future, trusting the basic principles of mass/energy conservation and evolution, is a conversion of subscription funds to cover the costs of OA publishing. Subscription journals and publishers will adapt or will be replaced in a true market scenario. The demand for new services and a new kind of scientific communication which really exploits the potential of the web is strong, so if traditional players are not able to offer what meets the demand, the market will go elsewhere.

Bernard Rentier, Rector of the University of Liege, underlined the key factors which made the OA policy so successful (61% of full text in the institutional archive). These factors are a strong linkage between OA deposit and internal research assessment, the offer of value-added services for researchers, and firm committment and support from the institution’s governing bodies. Data about increased visibilty are impressive: full text articles freely accessible  in OA without embargo are downloaded 34 times more than embargoed ones. Perceiving this advantage in terms of article views, many researchers put more products than required into the institutional repository (40,3% are papers from before 2002, the terminus a quo of the policy).

Mike Taylor concluded by reversing the perspective: OA is not about money and costs, but about knowledge dissemination. The real cost to be considered is that of a researcher wasting his time searching papers he has no acces to: this is worth ten times the billions spent in subscriptions. And, as many said, closed access when dealing with medical data can cost lives. So, OA is about sharing content and multiplying it in a digital way, about giving justice to taxpayers who receive a return on their investment in the form of advances in knowledge, about changing the world, about a unity that erases the divide between those few who have access and the vast majority who don’t, and about accepting the reality that today distribution is free. The preliminary to this is a radical realignment of the publishing world: publishing stands for “make public” and not for erecting walls and barriers to access in order to ensure revenues. The real cost to be worried about is the wasted opportunity cost for each closed content that could be used by anyone, and in unexpected ways. So the claim again is for a common and collaborative work on policies to lead to a transition to a full open access scenario.

At the end of the day, in the wonderful venue of the Bode Museum, Haim Gertner told stories about the Holocaust and its memory, and presented the project “Gathering the fragments” about Holocaust documents. The value of openness is in the fact that a photo, a document, or whatever “piece” of information, can be of no value for one person but of immense value to another, who can interpret it and give it a meaning. A perfect metaphor for science.

A new OAI-PMH repository for OpenEdition

data.tron by Ryoji IkedaOpenEdition has recently set up a new OAI-PMH repository, available at this address:

This repository is accessible to all and contains all documents from the OpenEdition Books,, Hypotheses, and Calenda platforms. It replaces our previous repository, created in 2009, which contained data from only.

The repository contains data in Dublin Core (DC) and METS (Metadata Encoding and Transmission Standard) formats. Furthermore, OpenEdition partners have access to our TEI (Text Encoding Initiative), which describes the full text of the documents available on and OpenEdition Books.

Here are the main requests that can be addressed to the repository. Please note that requests return results in XML format and are primarily intended for data-harvesting bots.

Complete technical documentation is available at the following address:

OpenEdition Newsletter issue no. 200

366 • 25 • Coffee and news, Svein Halvor Halvorsen, (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Today we are publishing the 200th issue of the Lettre d’OpenEdition, our newsletter dedicated to the Calenda platform. Launched with in 1999, the Lettre d’OpenEdition now has 50,000 subscribers. Over the years the Lettre has accompanied our platforms as they have evolved, presenting, initially on a monthly basis, new journals and issues published on, announcements published on Calenda and new research blogs on the Hypotheses platform. A new stage began in 2012 with the Lettre branching into two editions, the first dedicated to Calenda, the second to and Hypotheses. This is just the first step. Soon each of the four platforms will have its own weekly newsletter and, in the not-too-distant future, subscribers will receive à la carte newsletters with announcements matched to their interests. The OpenEdition Newsletter, in English, is also going from strength to strength, with Issue 3 due out shortly.
Subscribe to the OpenEdition Newsletter and consult the archives

Open Access Week: A week of events promoting open access to research results


From 21 to 27 October 2013, the globally reaching Open Access Week will give everyone the chance to discover initiatives promoting open access to the results of academic research. This year, OpenEdition is one of the event’s many partners. No less than three themed events will be held in Paris on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings. What’s more, hands-on workshops focusing on the practical aspects of open access will run throughout the week. See below for the full programme of events. Sign up on this page. We hope you will be able to join us!

21 October: Open access for all!

Fondation Maison des Sciences de l’Homme (FMSH),
Auditorium, 190 avenue de France, Paris (13th arrondissement).
Métro Quai de la Gare

Evening animated by Nicolas De Lavergne, Head of Communications and Digital Innovation at the FMSH.

6–6.30pm Introduction: From open access to participative sciences

  • Hervé le Crosnier. Lecturer and researcher at the Université de Caen. Cofounder of C&F éditions. See his online course on digital culture.

6.30pm Round Table: Opening up research to citizens. Three examples

  • Creative Commons Licences: Danièle Bourcier,
    Director of research at the CNRS, academic director at Creative Commons France:

7.30pm Open buffet

23 October: Open access for research

École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS),
Amphitheatre, 105 boulevard Raspail, Paris (6th arrondissement).
Métro Notre-Dame-des-Champs

6–6.30pm Introduction to open access

6.30–7pm The role of academic publishers

7–8pm Round table on open access

8pm Open buffet

24 October: Open access and new media

Université Pierre et Marie Curie,
Amphitheatre 25, 4 place Jussieu, Paris (5th arrondissement).
Métro Jussieu

6.15–6.45pm Digital humanities

6.45–7.15pm Social networks and open access

7.15–8.15pm Towards new research practices?

8.15pm Open buffet

22, 23, 24 October: Workshops – Open access in practice

The URFIST (Paris), the CCSD (Centre pour la Communication Scientifique Directe) and the BUPMC (Bibliothèque Universitaire Pierre et Marie Curie) are offering the following hour-long workshops:

  • Economic models: green, gold, who pays?
  • Open access contributors: How to deposit articles in the HAL open archive?

15 places are available for each session. Register now!


Open Access Week: OpenEdition in Torino on October 22

2011-10-17-102804openaccess_sq_webOn Tuesday, October 22, Pierre Mounier will participate in a study day organized by the Università degli Studi di Torino on the occasion of the International Open Access Week. He will present OpenEdition innovative business model.

Program : Open Access in the Humanities and Social Sciences: Prospects and Opportunities

Moderator: Elena Giglia, Head of Open Access projects

14.00 – Welcome speech by Raffaele Caterina, Chairman of the Commissione Ricerca del Senato accademic
14:15 – Welcome speech by Claudio Borio, Director of the Divisione Ricerca, Relazioni Internazionali Biblioteche e Musei
14.30 – Open Edition: innovation and new business models for publishers and readers , Pierre Mounier, Deputy Director of Open Edition
15h00 – Riviste UniMi: the value of Open Access journals, Paola Galimberti , University of Milan
15:30 – Beyond the publication: the Italian experience , Maria Chiara Pievatolo , University of Pisa
16.00 – Academy University Press: a new editor to serve new needs, Armando Lorenzo , Accademia University Press
16:30 – Discussion and conclusions

Practical information
Aula Magna
Campus Luigi Einaudi
Lungo Dora Siena, 100 A

See the full program in Italian

Horizons for social sciences and humanities : OpenEdition contribution

Vilnius at duskThe 23rd and 24th of september, the lithuanian presidency of the European Council is organizing at Vilnius a conference about the social sciences and humanities in the new “Horizon 2020″ research framework. To prepare the conference, a consultation has been set up before the summer, calling for the research community in Europe to send written contributions to the organizers. Serving the research communities in humanities and social sciences for almost 15 years for their digital communication and dissemination needs in open access, OpenEdition proposed the contribution published below.

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Minor forms of academic communication: revamping the relationship between science and society?

On October 14, OpenEdition organizes a panel dedicated to academic blogging in Montréal (Palais des Congrès) during the World Social Science Forum. This year, the forum will deal about “Social transformations and the digital age”.

The panel title is “Minor forms of academic communication: revamping the relationship between science and society?

Image by Emmanuel Milou, Creative commons licence.

Image by Emmanuel Milou, Creative commons licence.

First developed by physicists, the open access movement has significantly widened in scope and has been taken up by the European Commission and the G8. If the motivations behind this are essentially to do with innovation, competiveness and the economic efficiency of state investments, open access also introduces a major change in the relationship between science and society. Once citizens have access to the results of social science research, in real time and in their entirety, the whole nature of the relationship between science and society is renewed. However, the debate is focused on the major forms of academic communication: journal articles and books. And yet, in ways almost invisible to the academy, so-called minor forms of academic communication are developing in the interstices, creating a kind of “permanent virtual seminar” and intermeshing with promising heuristic, pedagogic and societal possibilities. Over the last decade, research blogs have embodied a new experience of academic communication, allowing for an experimentation of formats, schedules and interactions that differ from those of the traditional academic process, at both its early and later stages. These blogs dovetail with societal questions, open up new frontiers and step outside the academic ivory tower. From “just-in-time sociology” to probing interpretations of the “Arab Spring”, from analysis of contemporary visual culture to knowledge of contemporary movements such as rap, tattoos and religious conversions, academic blogs place the social sciences at the heart of the society they study. Academic blogs have already found a following. Through this readership a democratisation of access to science is underway. This momentum brings opportunities and reveals new ethical, epistemological and scientific questions.

See also and

For an academic, imparting knowledge revolves around two main activities. As a researcher, an academic must produce articles destined for a very limited readership and adhering to a very rigid process, one that involves severe constraints of time and form. As a teacher, an academic must think of his or her students; he or she must make knowledge accessible and arouse curiosity while also seeking to instil the notion of scientific rigour: outlining hypotheses; identifying the results that may be obtained if these hypotheses are borne out; questioning the validity of the said hypotheses. I will come back to the experience of the Freakonometrics blog, which originated as a response to a pedagogical difficulty and is based on two recent ventures. The first was Freakonomics, Stephen Dubner and Steven Levitt’s blog (then books), which aimed to explain economic behaviours using surprising and sometimes provocative examples. The second was the recent explosion of “data visualisation”, an offshoot of open data and big data that showed statistics could be elegant as well as informative. The Freakonometrics blog emerged from a desire to explain in very practical terms how econometric modelling works, by providing (or explaining how to find) data and sharing codes with which to produce graphics. This experience provided the opportunity to publish research studies in an unconventional form. If the rigour expected is the same as that of an article submitted to a peer-reviewed journal, the blog format allows authors to include anecdotes and exploit the rich potential of online documents (animations, links, etc.). Blog posts also extend the notion of reproducible research, the idea being not to impress the reader by making him or her think (s)he is reading something groundbreaking (which we all seek to do in an academic article), but instead to instil the idea of do-it-yourself by allowing all readers to reproduce the analysis.

My paper will discuss the creation of a blog on the Hypotheses platform in relation to my position as a “young academic” and drawing on my experience of academic blogging. I would like to put forward the hypothesis that for a young academic, blogging is a means to liberate oneself from the rules of the academic world. It offers unrivalled editorial freedom and potential academic recognition. I would like to show that, in turn, this academic liberation emancipates knowledge itself, allowing it to reach sectors and readerships beyond those originally intended. I also wish to point out the practical aspects of this interplay between the liberation of the young academic and the liberation of knowledge. First, I will show why for a young academic, blogging is a way to liberate (or at least distance) oneself from the rules of the academic establishment. Secondly, I will attempt to show that by freeing themselves from the academic sphere, young academics impart knowledge, skills and qualities that are useful to everyone.

In a context of financial difficulties and waning influence, the social sciences now place more importance on producing authority than producing knowledge. The new tools of digital micro-publication, which compete with traditional publications yet lack institutional legitimacy, have met with strong resistance. The characteristics that make them such formidable tools for research, communication and academic discussion, and for collective and collaborative work in particular, remain largely unrecognised. In the absence of suitable incentives and training programs, use of these tools is developing virally and falls far short of full potential. Will such tools continue to develop as best they can at the sidelines of the academy? While the humanities shun their social responsibilities, academic blogging will remain an art rather than a science.

See also Why blog ?

  • A blind spot? Digital infrastructures for digital publishing, and for academic blogging in particular, Marin Dacos (aka in English, @OpenMarin and in French, @MarinDacos)

After several centuries of development, knowledge technologies today form a highly organised ecosystem, structured around books and journals and with its own clearly identified professions, infrastructures and actors. From publishers to librarians, authors to booksellers, a book industry has emerged and encourages the circulation of ideas. With the rise of the network, these roles are slowly being redefined and new actors are rapidly emerging. The 2006 ACLS report (“Our Cultural Commonwealth: The Report of the American Council of Learned Societies Commission on Cyberinfrastructure for the Humanities and Social Sciences”) is one of the first signs of recognition of the need for digital infrastructures. These infrastructures are not simply confined to “noble” publications i.e. books and journals. They also concern the so-called minor forms of academic communication. Yet developing such infrastructures requires much more than simply installing a server under a desk. On the contrary, digital infrastructures necessitate the creation of platforms, which in turn entail the emergence of new teams and new professions – those of digital publishing. These platforms are often developed or bought up by predatory multinationals (for example, Mendeley absorbed by Elsevier). Academic-led alternatives do exist (Zotero for bibliographies, Hypotheses for blogs), yet the academic community has failed to fully recognise the associated opportunities and risks. The academy has every interest in making sure it does not become marginalised within its own infrastructures. The alternative is to reproduce the vagaries of the extraordinarily concentrated global publishing system, which has stripped the research sector of some of its intellectual and budgetary initiative-taking capacities.

See also :  ”Scholarly blogs, a space on the side for academic dialogue” by Marin Dacos and Pierre Mounier. Part 1 and Part 2.

Can we reach Open Access in the Humanities and the Social sciences ? (conference, Mexico, September 17th)

Learning lessons from OpenEdition experience (1999 to date). Mexico September 17th 2013. Ciudad universitaria.

Learning lessons from OpenEdition experience (1999 to date). Mexico September 17th 2013. Ciudad universitaria.

The arrival of the web has increased opportunities to democratise access to knowledge. This is particularly the case in the humanities and social sciences, which fulfil a social function in interpreting and understanding societies, their culture, history and sociology. Though the open access movement was pioneered by physicists (ArXiv), the movement now includes the humanities and social sciences through projects relating to journals (Redalyc, Scielo,, books (Oapen, OpenEdition Books), open archives (HAL, SSRN) and even blogs (Hypothèses, Culture visuelle). While some commentators denounce open access as a utopia dangerous for the entire publishing system, others argue that it represents a historic opportunity for the humanities and social sciences to position themselves at the vanguard of all disciplines, rather than cultivating a quiet conservatism. Above and beyond these theoretical arguments, however, is the question of how to attain open access. The “green” and “gold” approaches are pitted against one another, though they are in fact complementary. Many commentators propose to shift the onus of payment from post- to pre-production, from reader to author. Others propose alternative solutions such as crowdsourcing or subscription mechanisms. OpenEdition, for its part, provides commercial services while maintaining its content in open access. In all events, a balanced, long-term and economically sound solution will depend on a new alliance between the actors of the scholarly publishing system: publishers, libraries, academics and platforms.

To find out more

About Marin Dacos

Marin Dacos is the founder and the director of OpenEdition. Originally a historian of photography, he taught at Avignon University and the EHESS in Paris for several years before founding in 1999. He is now a digital humanities and open access specialist. His projects have been awarded grants several times by major players such as the French Ministry of Research, CNRS, University of Aix-Marseille, EHESS, Fundation Gulbenkian, Google (Google Grant for Digital Humanities for Bilbo). OpenEdition is now a “Facility of Excellence” and funded until 2020. He has published a great many articles on digital history and digital publishing and is the editor of Read/Write Book. Le livre inscriptible (OpenEdition Press, 2010) and the co-author, with Pierre Mounier, of L’édition électronique (La Découverte, 2010).

OpenEdition serves the humanities and social sciences research communities through four publication and information platforms: (scientific journals), Calenda, (academic announcements), Hypotheses (research blogs) andOpenEdition Books. OpenEdition is developed by the Centre for Open Electronic Publishing (Cleo), a non-profit public initiative promoting open access academic publishing, with the support of the main French research institutions. Since 2011, OpenEdition is complemented by a Freemium programme addressing libraries’ specific needs in a variety of formats and services.

To find out more

In English :

In French :

Source :

OpenEdition is moving!

OpenEdition is expanding. In order to optimize our working environment, we are moving from our current premises on the Saint-Charles campus in Marseille to bigger and better equipped premises at the Château-Gombert technology park in Marseille. The move began this morning, Tuesday 9th July, and will continue until Friday evening.

Our new postal address is as follows:

Le Cléo / OpenEdition
38 rue Frédéric Joliot-Curie
13451 Marseille Cedex 20

Our telephone numbers, email addresses and the URLs of our sites remain unchanged; our portal will therefore be unaffected. Our premises in Paris and in Portugal are also unaffected by this change.

OpenEdition services will be disrupted this week. We will respond to your requests as soon as the situation has returned to normal.

We can be contacted on +33 (0)4 13 55 03 40 and at

Do you want to work for OpenEdition and promote open access? It’s time to make us know!

OpenEdition recruits several people with various skills:
- responsable de projets d’édition électronique :
- développeur open source :
- chargé de projet OpenEdition Manuscripts
- in the future, we will also hire a community manager for Hypotheses and
more people with IT, digital publishing, community management and
documentation skills.

Speaking French is mandatory. People native from different languages are
very welcome. These full time jobs are located in Marseilles, France,
without any exception (no teleworking).

Arguments for Open Access to Research Results


This text was first published on 15 March 2013 in Le Monde by sixty professionals belonging to the community of higher education and research: university presidents, directors of several Maisons des Sciences de l’Homme, publishers, representatives of journals, representatives of university libraries, professors and researchers. The call is open to everyone: engineers, scholars, students, information professionals, librarians, journalists, etc.

In July 2012, the European Commission issued a recommendation on Open Access (i.e. free for the readers) publication of the results of publicly funded scientific research. The Commission believes that such a measure is necessary to increase the visibility of European research before 2020, by gradually suppressing the barriers between readers and scientific papers, after a possible embargo period from six to twelve months. Latin America has been benefiting from this approach for ten years after the development of powerful platforms for Open Access journals. Scielo and Redalyc, which together host almost 2000 journals, have considerably increased their visibility thanks to their Open Access policy: the Brazilian portalScielo now has more traffic than the US-based JSTOR. Such examples show that Open Access changes the balance of power in a world dominated by groups which hold thousands of (mostly English-language) journals: it paves the way to what could be called a real “bibliodiversity”, since it enables the emergence of a plurality of viewpoints, modes of publication, scientific paradigms, and languages.

Some French editors of journals in the Humanities and Social Sciences (HSS) have expressed their concern with regard to this recommendation, which they saw as a threat to a vulnerable business model. However, a thorough assessment of the sector would be required to provide a true cost-benefit analysis: one should shed light on its funding sources and modes, both direct and indirect, public and private, and determine the roles the various actors play in this field, pinpointing the added value brought about by each of them.


The OpenEdition blog