January 23, 2022

Emory Univeristy Receives $1.2 Million Mellon Grant to Help Shape Future of Scholarly Publishing

From Emory University:

Emory College of Arts and Sciences has launched a $1.2 million effort that positions it to be a national leader in the future of scholarly publishing. The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation is funding the multiyear initiative to support long-form, open-access publications in the humanities in partnership with university presses.

The idea to explore new models for humanities publishing was born out of a working group of faculty and administrators headed by Michael A. Elliott, interim Emory College dean and Asa Griggs Candler Professor of English.


Led by the Bill and Carol Fox Center for Humanistic Inquiry, the endeavor will bring together efforts in Emory College, Emory Libraries, the Center for Faculty Development and Excellence and the Emory Center for Digital Scholarship.

At the helm is Sarah McKee, most recently managing editor of the New Georgia Encyclopedia. She arrived this month as the Fox Center’s senior associate director of publishing, tasked with rolling out ventures that publish humanities monographs as digital publications.

The project will run through 2020 and calls for Emory to share the cost and benefit of publishing new long-form works.


The prospect of Emory faculty producing scholarship that is freely available to anyone with an Internet connection has appeal in several different ways, says Lisa Macklin, the director of scholarly communications for Emory Libraries.

Macklin, an attorney and librarian, is developing a model publishing contract for these types of digital publications with the support of another grant from Mellon. She says most academics write to be read. Reaching beyond the usual academic audiences who buy university press books is just one potential benefit.


In 2014, Emory received a $56,500 Mellon grant that facilitated research, visits from press editors, and conversations about what sort of collaboration and cross-disciplinary efforts would support Emory faculty creating digital monographs in the humanities.

The working group grew out of those discussions. The latest grant is the second phase of work, exploring the possibilities of publishing monographs online — complete with the multimedia features such as videos and interactive maps.

McKee will work with Allison Adams, associate director for research and scholarship in the Center for Faculty Development and Excellence, to help faculty navigate the ideas and process for writing a book. Both also are able to connect with publishers, especially those primed for digital options.

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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.