Scholarly Publishing Symposium 2014

publishing symp paper background logoScholarly Publishing Symposium 2014

The scholarly publishing symposium will create a space for a campus-wide conversation about today’s publishing landscape, in particular the way in which graduate students and early career faculty approach publishing decisions. Attendees will experience a broad spectrum of topics and perspectives.


Check-in and refreshments (8:00-8:30)

Welcome and introductions (8:30-8:40)

Ed Van Gemert, Vice Provost for Libraries and University Librarian

All-audience keynote (8:40-9:45)

Scholarly Publishing: 350 Years of Journal Publishing but What’s Coming in the Next Ten?
Peter Binfield, Publisher and Co-Founder of PeerJ

Academic output is the most valuable content our society produces (both intellectually and in terms of the investment required), and yet the journal publication model has changed little in the last 350 years. In addition, academics remain seemingly content to hand over the responsibility for their content to publishers who may not have their same interests at heart. Despite this long history and institutional inertia, it is expected that the next ten years will see a dramatic change in how scholarly output is communicated. Pete Binfield (co-founder of open access publisher PeerJ) will provide an overview of some of the most pressing issues in research communication today, and explore the ways in which recent developments may ultimately lead to a complete overhaul of the journal model in as little as ten years. The likely end result? ….Find out at the keynote!

Breakout sessions (10:00-11:30)

Session A – Eliminating Barriers to Open Access Scientific Publications
Karl Broman, Professor of Biostatistics and Medical Informatics, University of Wisconsin-Madison

There is a strong movement towards open access scientific publications, through which the primary results of scientific research are broadly available rather than restricted to those with a subscription. However, significant barriers remain. It is difficult to break the tradition that focuses on publications in “high impact” journals such as Science, Nature, and Cell. And while page charges to authors are common at subscription-based scientific journals, authors must pay a significantly higher cost to publish in open access journals. Young investigators, in particular, face a tough choice: pay to publish open access and support young open access journals, or let subscribers pay and continue to go after Science, Nature, and Cell. Discussion will focus on possible solutions to these problems, including the roles of funding agencies, research institutions, and scientific societies.
Additional Campus Perspective: Julie Schneider, Library Director, Ebling Library, School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Session B – The First Book: Complex Decisions for Emerging Scholars
Gillian Rodger,  Associate Professor of Musicology and Ethnomusicology, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Intended for arts and humanities graduate students, postdocs, early-career faculty, and their mentors, this discussion will begin to unpack the complexity of publication options including the dissertation and first book, providing scholars with basic information to guide decisions.  Campus Perspectives: Gwen Walker, Editorial Director, University of Wisconsin Press; and Steve Hahn, Assistant Dean for Admissions and Academic Services, Graduate School, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Session C – Knowledge Forms (and Formats): Writing and Publishing in the Age of Networked Scholarship
Gita Manaktala, Editorial Director, MIT Press

Today’s networked, richly mediated environment offers new ways for scholars to communicate, collaborate, and disseminate their work. Further opportunities emerge as the record of our culture goes digital and scholars find new tools and techniques to interpret it.  The marketplace for scholarship is also changing as we seek information in smaller, searchable nuggets. Scholars who blog, tweet, and contribute to open digital archives understand that knowledge itself is taking new forms — dynamic, open-ended, and capable of assimilating comments and reactions. How do these new forms complement or compete with the sustained arguments and final form scholarship that we associate with scholarly books and journals? Such changes challenge us to reconsider how we write and publish. This session will explore some of these changes and invite participants to discuss what new forms their own scholarship is taking as well as what older forms they continue to value.
Campus Perspective: Eric Hoyt, Assistant Professor of Media and Cultural Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Lunch and all-audience panel (11:45-1:20; panel begins at 12:15)

Examining the Economic Infrastructure of Scholarly Publishing
Facilitator: Peter Binfield, Publisher & Co-Founder – PeerJ
Panelist: Brad Fenwick, Senior Vice President Global Strategic Alliances, Elsevier
Panelist: Caroline Levine, Professor of English and Department Chair, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Panelist: Gita Manaktala, Editorial Director, MIT Press
Panelist: Aaron McCollough, Editorial Director, University of Michigan Press & Michigan Publishing

Scholarly publishing is integral to the life of the academy. Phrases like “publish or perish.” are often invoked in emphasizing the significance of scholarly communication to the research and scholarship lifecycle. Technological advances and transition to electronic environment have challenged the conventional model of scholarly publishing and led to the emergence of new approaches that are shaping today’s publishing landscape. Models such as open access come with their own drawbacks, and they create an entirely new landscape for researchers, scholars, and institutions to navigate. This calls for a closer examination of the economic infrastructure to addresses the needs and perspectives of multiple stakeholders within the new publishing environment.  This panel discussion, facilitated by our morning keynote speaker, Peter Binfield, will examine the economic infrastructure of scholarly publishing from perspectives of the university press, university library, the transformed academic journal, the commercial publisher, and the tenured university professor.

Closing remarks (1:20-1:30)

Wendy Crone, Professor of Engineering Physics and Interim Dean, Graduate School

Adjourn (1:30)

Speaker and Panelist Biographies

Peter Binfield

Peter Binfield, Publisher & Co-Founder – Peer-J

Peter Binfield, Publisher & Co-Founder of PeerJ, brings 20 years of experience in the academic publishing world. Dr. Binfield earned a doctorate in optical physics from the University of Aberdeen and has held positions at Institute of Physics, Kluwer Academic, Springer, SAGE and most recently the Public Library of Science (PLoS). He helped to develop PLOS ONE into the largest and most transformative journal in the world. Dr. Binfield is passionate about academic publishing and believes that publishing needs to be in service to the academic community.

Karl Broman


Karl Broman, Professor of Biostatistics and Medical Informatics, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Karl Broman is an applied statistician focusing on problems in genetics and genomics, particularly the analysis of meiotic recombination and the genetic dissection of complex traits in experimental organisms. He holds a doctorate in Statistics from the University of California, Berkeley, and has served as Associate Editor for Biostatistics, Genetics, and the Journal of the American Statistical Association.

Brad Fenwick
Brad Fenwick

Brad Fenwick, Senior Vice President Global Strategic Alliances, Elsevier

Dr. Brad Fenwick is a Professor of Pathobiology and Microbiology. He holds a doctor of Veterinary Medicine and Masters of Pathology from Kansas State University and Ph.D. in Comparative Pathology from the University of California Davis where he completed his residency and is distinguished alumnus. He is board qualified in Pathology and board certified in Microbiology and Immunology. Dr. Fenwick has received numerous awards and recognitions for his research, holds several patents, founded a biotechnology company, and gives lectures and consults globally with universities, companies, and governments. He is a Fellow with the American Council on Education, a Fellow with the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and a Jefferson Science Fellow and Senior Science Advisor to the U.S. Department of State and USAID where his portfolio includes Higher Education and International Science, Technology, and Innovation policy development. Dr. Fenwick has held many senior administrative positions, including Graduate Dean, Vice President for Research / President for Intellectual Properties, Vice Chancellor for Research and Engagement, and Chief Scientist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture. As Senior Vice President for Global Strategic Alliances with Elsevier, he is charged with forging partnerships with and between governments and universities to enhance their academic and research success.

Caroline Levine

Caroline Levine, Professor of English and Department Chair, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Caroline Levine is Professor and Chair of the English Department at UW-Madison. She is the author of three books, The Serious Pleasures of Suspense (University of Virginia Press, 2003), Provoking Democracy: Why We Need the Arts (Blackwell, 2007), and Forms: Whole, Rhythm, Hierarchy, Network (forthcoming, Princeton University Press, 2015). She has published in scholarly journals and also in some more public forums, including The Times Higher Education Supplement, Inside Higher Ed, and Public Books.

Gita Manaktala, Editorial Director, MIT Press

Gita Manaktala

Gita Manaktala is Editorial Director of the MIT Press, a publisher of cutting-edge scholarship in the sciences, social sciences, and humanities. She oversees the acquisition of about 200 new book projects each year in 16 major subject areas. Until 2009, she served as the press’s Marketing Director with responsibility for worldwide promotion and sales of the press’s titles. Gita helped to develop CISnet, an online collection of the Press’s computer and information science titles (now on the IEEE Explore platform), and E-Books at the MIT Press, an online bookstore. She is an active member of the Association of American University Presses and teaches in the popular Books Boot Camp workshop offered by the Association of American Publishers’ Professional and Scholarly Publishing Division.


Aaron McCollough
Aaron McCollough

Aaron McCollough, Editorial Director for the University of Michigan Press and Michigan Publishing

Aaron McCollough is the Editorial Director for the University of Michigan Press and Michigan Publishing. He is also a Senior Associate Librarian in the Michigan Library system. McCollough has a PhD in English Literature from the University of Michigan and is a widely published poet whose most recent book is Underlight (Ugly Duckling Presse, Brooklyn, 2012). He is also co-publisher of the independent press, SplitLevel Texts, which specializes in literary lyric cross-genre books.


Gillian Rodger, Associate Professor of Musicology and Ethnomusicology, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Gillian Rodgers
Gillian Rodger

Gillian Rodger is Associate Professor of Musicology and Ethnomusicology in the Music Department at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Her on-going research interests cluster around popular musical theater of nineteenth-century America, working-class popular culture and questions of gender and sexuality. In 2010, the University of Illinois Press published Champagne Charlie and Pretty Jemima: Variety Entertainment in the Nineteenth Century, and she is currently completing a book, tentatively entitled “Just One of the Boys” that focuses on male impersonation in American variety and vaudeville. Rodger has also published on the British synth-pop group Eurythmics and the Scottish singer Annie Lennox and has expanded her research interests to focus on musical and theatrical performance and the construction of whiteness in nineteenth century New Orleans.

Sponsored by UW-Madison Graduate School, UW-Madison Libraries, Office of the Provost,
and School of Library & Information Studies