Northwestern Backs Its Press, Plans to Move Journal Online

September 22, 2009

With the economic downturn threatening the viability of some university presses, any "review" of a publishing house is likely to crank up the jitters. Perhaps with that in mind, Northwestern University went out of its way to announce Monday that the university has "reaffirmed its commitment to publishing and disseminating scholarly writing," and that it will conduct a national search to hire a new full-time director of the Northwestern University Press. But while the review solidified Northwestern's commitment to a sustained role in scholarly publishing, it also reinforced that changes are coming to its press, as to the publishing industry overall. Beginning next year, the university announced, the press will make its primary journal, TriQuarterly, available only electronically. “This move will align publishing efforts more closely with the university’s academic enterprise while at the same time expanding electronic dissemination and public access to the wonderful literature and essays that are published in TriQuarterly,” said Sarah Pritchard, the Charles Deering McCormick University Librarian. “Scholarly publishing is increasingly moving to open access, allowing greater distribution of academic work. This reflects that trend and allows the journal editors to take advantage of the multimedia capabilities offered through online publishing.”

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