Today, the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University launches PressForward, a new discovery portal and publishing platform for scholarship and intellectual discussion on the web.
The big idea of PressForward is to create a digital-first alternative to the cumbersome mechanisms of traditional gatekeepers — academic journals — while keeping main benefits of print publication and peer review: their ability to concentrate a community’s attention around the best emergent writing and research. The project is bankrolled through a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation’s Digital Information Technology program
What’s unusual about PressForward, at least for a university venture, is that it both draws inspiration from new media journalism and seeks to include it in the new wave of digital scholarship. As CHNM’s Dan Cohen writes, “the web has found ways to filter the abundance of online work, ranging from the tech world (Techmeme) to long-form posts (The Browser), which act as screening agents for those interested in an area of thought or practice.”
With those examples in mind, PressForward’s genesis was animated by two questions: “What if we could combine the best of the scholarly review process with the best of open-web filters? What if we had a scholarly communication system that was digital first?”
Direct to PressForward Web Site
The initiative, led by Dan Cohen and Tom Scheinfeldt, is generously funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. PressForward’s advisory board includes leading thinkers and doers in publishing and scholarly communication:
- Adam Aston, science and industry journalist and former editor at BusinessWeek and The Economist
- Kathleen Fitzpatrick, Professor of Media Studies, Pomona College; MediaCommons founder; Director of the Modern Language Association‘s Office of Scholarly Communication
- Peter Jerram, CEO, Public Library of Science (PLoS)
- Shana Kimball, Head of Publishing Services, Outreach & Strategic Development, MPublishing, University of Michigan
- David Kirsch, Associate Professor of Management and Entrepreneurship, University of Maryland‘s Robert H. Smith School of Business
- Alexis Madrigal, Senior Editor, The Atlantic; co-creator of Longshot magazine and The San Francisco Post-Chronicle; former writer at Wired.com.
- Steve Wheatley, Vice President, American Council of Learned Societies
See Also: The Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University are the people that offers some wonderful (and free) web tools including Zotero (biblio management, we also use it to archive web pages); Omeka (web publishing platform for collections); Scribe (notetaking app); and Timeline Builder. All of these tools are free to download and use.
See Also: PressForward on Twitter