Welcoming Bloomsbury Academic as an OASPA member

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We recently welcomed Bloomsbury Academic as an OASPA member in the Large Publisher category. Bloomsbury Academic joins over 190 OASPA members. 

We asked Ros Pyne, Global Director, Research and Open Access, a few questions so we could learn more about Bloomsbury Academic and its connection to open scholarship and decision to become an OASPA member.


Tell us a bit about Bloomsbury Academic and the service it provides

Bloomsbury Academic was launched in 2008. Since then, we’ve grown to become a leading global independent publisher with offices in London, New York, Sydney, and New Delhi. We’re committed to excellence and originality in the arts, humanities, and social sciences, and our academic imprints include The Arden Shakespeare, Hart Publishing, T&T Clark, Zed Books, and many more. Alongside our book publishing, we have a leading digital resources division that focuses on providing creative online research and learning environments for a global community of students, scholars, instructors, and librarians. 

Why did you decide to join OASPA and what do you hope to get out of your OASPA membership?

We’re excited to connect with other OASPA members who, like us, are exploring ways to expand open access for scholarly books. OASPA has also been hugely important over the years in advocating for inclusive approaches to OA, and in joining OASPA we’re affirming our long-term commitment to those values.  

What are the short and medium-term priorities for your organisation/publication in relation to open scholarship?

We’ve offered open access for our scholarly books from our first days as an academic publisher. Over the years we’ve experimented with various approaches to funding and enabling open access for long-form scholarship, including freemium and delayed OA as well as fee models. We see OA as the future of research publishing, including for books, and we remain committed to exploring new and more equitable approaches. I joined Bloomsbury last year to lead our OA programme and help figure out how we can make OA possible for many more Bloomsbury book authors.  

What do you think are the main challenges for the communication of scholarship generally in the near future?

There has been a devaluing – and defunding – of scholarship in the arts, humanities, and social sciences (AHSS) in recent years. We’ve long seen library monograph acquisitions squeezed out by journal big deals; open access is if anything exacerbating this, with library budgets increasingly tied up in new OA deals for STM journals. This makes it even more challenging to find long-term solutions to flip scholarly books to OA. The disparity in OA availability between AHSS books and STM journals also risks further diminishing the stature and profile of AHSS scholarship.  

How do you think OASPA can help mitigate those challenges?

OASPA’s commitment to diverse approaches to OA is particularly important in the AHSS and books space. OASPA is also uniquely positioned to bring together publishers, librarians, funders, technology providers, and others working on new approaches to OA for books, in a constructive and open-minded way. 


Bloomsbury Academic https://www.bloomsbury.com/discover/bloomsbury-academic/



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