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As University Press Week approaches, we’re pausing to reflect on the many reasons we value these institutions of peer-reviewed scholarship. Here are our top three:
1. They connect scholarship to broader society.
Daniel Coit Gilman, founder of Johns Hopkins University and the oldest university press in the country, saw publishing as one of the “noblest duties of a university,” emphasizing that each university should hold itself responsible for “[advancing] knowledge and [diffusing] it not merely among those who can attend the daily lectures — but far and wide.” From partnerships to publish content with community organizations like those that Wayne State University Press focuses on, to the commitment that University of Arizona Press has made to publishing indigenous voices from around the world, it’s clear that university presses heard Gilman’s call and answered with resounding agreement.
2. They improve scholarly conversation.
Yes, university presses are focused on making scholarship accessible, but they’re also committed to bringing all necessary parts of the conversation to the table, including works that don’t necessarily have mainstream appeal. For instance, Princeton University Press can and did publish a title like The Origins of the Urban Crisis knowing full well that it would appeal to and reach a smaller, more focused audience — a move that a more risk-averse mainstream publisher may not be able to justify financially.
3. Their content is foundational to a solid ebook collection.
Content that not only contributes to academic scholarship, but also connects academics to society at large is clearly a valuable component of a library collection. At ProQuest, we’re committed to empowering researchers and librarians so we have long partnered with university presses to help make their content available electronically under multiple models, including subscription to increase exposure of these titles to users.
Our newly launched University Press Ebook Subscription collects a focused, critical mass of scholarly, university press only content — over 24,000 premium titles — that is critical to research and curated to balance relevance and currency. We offer this content on an intuitive reader interface designed with extensive feedback from users that provides mobile device access to all of the titles in the collection.
At ProQuest, we value university presses for many reasons, and that’s why we’ve chosen to curate a subscription collection of solely university press titles.
Learn more about our University Press Ebook Subscription, and discover how you can support university presses and build your university press foundation.