COPIM (Community-led Open Publication Infrastructures for Monographs) was an international partnership of researchers, universities, librarians, open access book publishers and infrastructure providers. It worked on building community-owned, open systems and infrastructures to enable open access book publishing to flourish.
Open access book publishing stands at a crossroads: one avenue leads to the monopolisation of open access by large commercial publishers and for-profit intermediaries, with infrastructures and funding systems set up to serve those businesses and their approaches; the other opens up a more diverse, scholar-led, community-owned, and not-for-profit publishing ecosystem that enables smaller and more community-focused presses to thrive and multiply.
COPIM was a project dedicated towards supporting these second sets of possibility. It was guided by the principle that publicly-funded research must be openly available to a global readership and a global authorship, without technical or economic barriers. It therefore aimed to move away from a model that prioritises the working practices and interests of large-scale, commercial publishers and service operations, to a more horizontal, cooperative, and knowledge-sharing approach, governed by the research community and open for widespread participation by scholar-led and non-profit publishers. We call this ‘scaling small’.
COPIM aimed to deliver major improvements in the infrastructures used both by open access book publishers and by those publishers making a transition to open access books. Its innovations aimed to enable more productive collaborations between people (including librarians, publishers, and researchers) in the open access landscape and expand opportunities to develop the skills, tools, funding networks, and systems necessary to run open access publishing operations. It will facilitate global collaborations to achieve collective stewardship of open access, and remove structural and organisational barriers to innovation in open access book publishing, especially in the Humanities and Social Sciences.
COPIM worked towards a more diverse, open, and democratically equitable future for academic publishing.
11/2019 to 04/2023
Research England Development Fund and Arcadia