Library as Publisher: New Models of Scholarly Communication for a New Era

by | Dec 11, 2017 | 0 comments

Now available as an open access e-book through the Charleston Briefings series, Library as Publisher: New Models of Scholarly Communication for a New Era, by Sarah Kalikman Lippincott.

Why are so many libraries going into the publishing business at a time when scholarly publishing is facing so many challenges?

Publishing, after all, is a complex business and the trend in the marketplace is to economies of scale and the consolidation of smaller publishers into the fold of the largest. It does not seem a propitious moment for a library to become a small independent publisher.

So why are libraries doing this?  How is this similar or different from the services commercial publishers provide?  Does it involve offering the same services, or are new models, types of content, and needs resulting in new solutions that suit new players?

This book will help the reader understand the context of library publishing. It also explores when a publishing program is a good fit for a library and provides guidance for defining, launching or growing a publishing initiative.


Sarah Lippincott has been one of the driving forces behind the expansion of library publishing programs in North America. This is a thoughtful and well-informed overview of why libraries are becoming publishers, the distinctive characteristics of the publishing operations they are forming, and prospects for the future. Emerging fields need some foundational texts to define them and articulate a relevant body of theory. This concise and pithy volume delivers that service for library publishing.”

Charles Watkinson, Associate University LibrarianPublishing, University of Michigan Library

Supported by Gale, a Cengage Company

Support from our friends at Gale, a Cengage Company made it possible for the primary format of this title to be open access. Find out more about helping to make this project financially sustainable.

About the Author

Sarah Lippincott is a librarian and consultant specializing in scholarly communication and digital scholarship. She served as the inaugural Program Director for the Library Publishing Coalition, a community-led membership association whose mission is to support a broad range of publishing activities in academic and research libraries. She received her MSLS from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her BA in the College of Letters and in French Studies from Wesleyan University. As a consultant, she has worked on strategic planning and communications for the Harvard Libraries, the Association of Research Libraries, SPARC, and the open access journal eLife.

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