January 20, 2022

Video: “Building the Better Ebook and Beyond” Session at CNI Fall Meeting

A video recording “Building the Better Ebook and Beyond” is now available online and embedded below.

The session/project briefing was recorded at the CNI’s Fall 2016 Membership Meeting in Washington, DC.


Alex Humphreys
Director, JSTOR Labs

Charles Watkinson
Director, Press; Associate University Librarian
University of Michigan

Lisa Macklin
Director, Scholarly Communications Office
Emory University

Barbara Rockenbach
Associate University Librarian for Collections and Services, Interim
Columbia University

From the Abstract

This session brings together several initiatives that are exploring the evolution of the monograph: (1) JSTOR Labs, an experimental platform development group, convened at Columbia University by a group of scholars, librarians, and publishers in October 2016.

Together, they tackled this design question: if we applied data visualization and design thinking techniques to the existing corpus of digitized monograph files, how could we improve the discovery and user experience for scholars, students, and general readers?

The first presentation will discuss the design principles and challenges that the expert group identified, demonstrate the working prototype created during a “flash build” at Columbia in November by JSTOR Labs, and explain how CNI attendees and others can take advantage of this openly available development. The lean, user-oriented product design process used for this project will also be outlined; a design process that any library or publisher can take advantage of for their own technology and innovation projects.

Emory University and the University of Michigan are working together on interrelated projects supported by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation that explore how publishers can best support and sustain digital scholarship. Emory is leading a project to create a “Model Contract for Digital Scholarship” that can be used to set out roles and responsibilities around the selection, production, marketing, and preservation of a publication that takes full advantage of digital affordances, including open access.

Michigan is developing a publishing platform optimized for digital scholarship, Fulcrum, built on the Hydra/Fedora framework. To ground the conversation, a concrete example of one new work of digital scholarship published by University of Michigan Press will be presented (“A Mid-Republican House from Gabii”). This is a multimodal work that cannot be presented in print and involves integrated narrative, datasets, and 3D models.


Slides From Lisa Macklin, Emory University

Links to Tools and Resources Discussed in Presentation (via CNI.org)

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.