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Popular ALA event will introduce leading open access publishing innovators and a conversation about successes and challenges to date

For Immediate Release
May 7, 2007

For more information, contact:
Jennifer McLennan
(202) 296-2296 x121

Kara Malenfant
(312) 280-2510

Washington, DC and Chicago, IL – May 7, 2007 – SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition) and ACRL (the Association of College and Research Libraries) today announced that the topic of the upcoming SPARC-ACRL Forum on emerging issues in scholarly communication, to be held during the ALA Annual Meeting in Washington, DC, will be “Course check: A conversation with three open access publishers about the challenges of sustainability.”

System-wide innovations that increase access to the results of research and scholarship are a key interest for the library community. Library support for these innovations, which ranges from being deeply engaged to dedicating scarce resources, is built upon the principle of open access – on evidence that open access accelerates the production, dissemination, and benefits of new knowledge, and on an understanding of the paths and business models that can deliver it. It is with this last point in mind that three of the most important and innovative leaders in scholarly publishing have been asked to speak at the next SPARC-ACRL Forum.

Speakers will include:

  • Mark Patterson, Director of Publishing, Public Library of Science
  • Paul Peters, Head of Business Development, Hindawi Publishing Corporation
  • Bryan Vickery, Deputy Publisher, BioMed Central and Editorial Director, Chemistry Central

The session will be introduced and moderated by Alma Swan, Director, Key Perspectives Ltd.

This forum will form part of an ongoing conversation, a discussion about successes and challenges in business models for publishers that provide open access, and the partnerships and resources that have or will lead to success. Speakers will pay particular attention to:

  • What they have learned about the challenges in creating a business model that delivers open access and the major adjustments they have had to make.
  • The role of print publishing in their open access efforts.
  • The point at which their projects may or have become economically self-sustaining and the pertinent milestones along the way.
  • The role and support of libraries in their future, including memberships, subscriptions to value-added services, alternative forms of library “acquisition” of their content, and other forms of support.
  • The responses from the research community to their new publishing models.
  • Their perceptions of the influence of open access journals on dynamics, interactions and roles and responsibilities between publishers, librarians and researchers.

Please join us for this important conversation. The SPARC-ACRL Forum will be held:


  • Saturday, June 23, 2007
  • 4:00 - 5:30PM
  • Georgetown Room, Hilton Washington (1919 Connecticut Avenue NW)
  • Registration is NOT required


(The event will be also available via SPARC Podcast at a later date).

The forum is followed by the ACRL Scholarly Communication Discussion Group, where there will be an open discussion of key issues that surface at the Forum. The Discussion Group will be held Sunday, June 24, from 4:00 - 5:30PM – also in the Hilton Washington, State Room.

For more information, visit the SPARC Web site at



SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), with SPARC Europe and SPARC Japan, is an international alliance of more than 800 academic and research libraries working to create a more open system of scholarly communication. SPARC’s advocacy, educational, and publisher partnership programs encourage expanded dissemination of research. SPARC is on the Web at


ACRL is a division of the American Library Association (ALA), representing more than 13,000 academic and research librarians and interested individuals. ACRL is the only individual membership organization in North America that develops programs, products and services to meet the unique needs of academic and research librarians. Its initiatives enable the higher education community to understand the role that academic libraries play in the teaching, learning and research environments.