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K-State Today

February 7, 2020

Task force appointed to review scholarly communication practices, make recommendations

Submitted by Office of the Provost

K-State is one of many colleges and universities grappling with the effects of an unsustainable scholarly communication model. Access to publicly-funded research is increasingly facilitated by for-profit corporations which charge ever-increasing prices to the institutions creating the work. Dubbed "The Serials Crisis" by the academic library community, this model has negatively impacted research and scholarly communication at K-State and around the world. Scholars, librarians, universities and advocacy organizations around the world are responding to the need for open access to publicly-funded research and data.

To address these issues at K-State, Provost Charles Taber, Faculty Senate President Tanya González, and Dean of Libraries Lori Goetsch created the Scholarly Communications Task Force during the 2019 fall semester. The purpose of this task force is to gather stakeholders in the K-State community to review the current landscape of scholarly communication practices on campus and offer recommendations to improve not only access to information at K-State but direct our institutional participation in the movement toward open scholarship.

The charge includes:

  • Reviewing scholarly communication initiatives to date on campus and preparing a report to include activities of our peer institutions and institutional leaders such as University of California and Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
  • Creating campus forums for discussion and consideration of alternatives to the system of scholarship including sustainability of current economic models, access to publicly funded research, author rights, open educational resources and distribution channels.
  • Making recommendations regarding new campus policies, guiding principles and other strategies that will support increased open sharing of research and scholarship at K-State.
  • Making recommendations that the university could enact at all levels including provost, senate, departments and individual faculty to move towards open access publishing.
  • Assessing budget implications of expanding current and establishing new open access initiatives.

The task force is chaired by Mindy Stafford Markham, associate professor and associate director for academic affairs, School of Family Studies and Human Services, and Faculty Senate president-elect.

Members are: Dan Andresen, computer science; Chris Culbertson, Arts and Sciences; Huston Gibson, landscape architecture and regional & community planning; Justin Kastner, diagnostic medicine and pathobiology; Katie Kingery-Page, Architecture, Planning & Design; Brian Lindshield, food, nutrition, dietetics and health; Ryan Otto, K-State Libraries; Suzanne Porath, curriculum and instruction; Jaebeom Su, marketing; Sheila Yeh, K-State Libraries; Lisa Tatonetti, English; and Doris Wright Carroll, Education.

The task force plans to seek input from the campus community in the spring semester. Additional information will be published in K-State Today.