May 17, 2022

University of North Texas is Leading a Global Team to Create an International Data Trust to Improve Measurement and Analysis of Open Access Book Usage

From the University of North Texas:

The University of North Texas is leading a team with members from around the world to create an international data trust improving the measurement and analysis of open access book usage.

The new data trust, funded through a $1.2 million grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, will be the first of its kind for scholarly publishing, enabling universities and publishers to share and analyze data on open access works.


Currently, there are no systematic practices for collecting data on how and where these materials are used. The two-year project, led by UNT librarian Kevin Hawkins and conducted in partnership with the Educopia InstituteCurtin UniversityUniversity of Michigan and the Book Industry Study Group, is designed to facilitate academic data sharing by compiling ebook usage data and standardizing analysis and reporting tools.

“Open access to scholarly literature has developed more slowly for academic books than for journals,” said Hawkins, who serves as assistant dean for scholarly communication at UNT Libraries. “The data trust will be designed to ensure responsible use of ebook metrics and will be a vital source of insight into the ways scholarly books are being accessed and used, and the impact of the knowledge they contain.”

In an effort to be transparent and inclusive about decision-making, the project team is seeking individuals to serve on its advisory boardNominations are due by Feb. 14.

Direct to Grant Proposal: Developing a Data Trust for Open Access Ebook Usage

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( 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, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.