Teaching an old university press publisher new ticks: Living in the present and preparing for the future of scholarly communications

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University presses currently exist in the dual worlds of print and digital publishing. Current staffing needs require that they hire personnel with skills and experience that mirror that present duality. Training and maintaining a skilled workforce requires a commitment to flexibility and an openness to the ever-changing nature of scholarly communication. As the scholarly publishing ecosystem continues to evolve, university presses will need to look to a future workforce that has additional training, knowledge, and experience beyond the traditional skills associated with academic publishing, one that fully embraces the realities of a digital world, the habits of new generations of researchers, and the increasing role of technology in scholarly communication. This article looks at what the future might look like, what skills might be required, and how one might prepare for that future. This article looks at practical issues in scholarly publishing pertaining to training, educating, and preparing scholarly publishing professionals for today's technology-driven world. To provide a context for my views, I'll begin by describing the nature of publishing at The Pennsylvania State University Press. Next, I'll explore what contemporary publishing means within the setting of a university press. Then, using the following questions as a guide, I'll map what skills might look like, now and in the future. One, what skills and expertise are publishers looking for in "contemporary book and journal publishing"? Two, where/how does one acquire those skills? Three, as publishing evolves, how will the skill sets for publishers change? And, four, where are publishers looking now for help in that future.




Alexander, P. H. (2014). Teaching an old university press publisher new ticks: Living in the present and preparing for the future of scholarly communications. Journal of Electronic Publishing, 17(2). https://doi.org/10.3998/3336451.0017.202

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