The coronavirus pandemic is challenging us all. At Open Book Publishers, we are continuing with our work—albeit from our separate homes, rather than our office in central Cambridge—publishing academic books that are freely available online to read, download and share.
Readers: please continue to enjoy and share our books. They are are available online with no paywall—you can read, download and reuse them in PDF, HTML and XML formats without charge, as always and for always.
Authors: please continue to submit your proposals to us, if you have them.
We are also still taking orders for our paperback, hardback, EPUB and MOBI editions, if you prefer a physical copy or another digital format, or if you would like to support our work with a purchase. (You can also support us with a donation if you wish.)
We wish safety and good health to our readers, our authors, and to everyone who is caught up in the current situation.
COVID19 and Open Access
During this period of crisis, the need for Open Access resources has become obvious to all. Most evidently, people need access to medical information, and those attempting to treat the virus and halt its spread need access to the relevant research (both the most recent work and the long tail on all relevant topics).
As well as this, people need easy and free access to high-quality content in a range of subject areas: to educate their children at home, to fill their time meaningfully and pleasurably in isolation, to continue with research projects, to take their minds off the whirl of news, to help them learn or write or think or plan.
The open availability of high-quality academic work—open to read, to share, to reuse and to build on in perpetuity, not simply free to read for a limited time at a publisher's discretion—is necessary at all times. This need is particularly obvious now.
So we will continue, as best as we can and with as much care as we can, to do our work: to publish brilliantly written, beautifully formatted books that are completely free to access online, to share and to reuse. We hope that they will do some good during this difficult and challenging period—and beyond it.
Curated resources: disease control, remote conferencing and more
Here we offer links to a number of resources that we hope will be particularly useful at this time. This list will be updated with new resources as they arise.
- Pre-publication chapters and a series of blog posts about the what, why and how of staging an online conference, taken from the peer-reviewed manuscript for the forthcoming Right Research: Modelling Sustainable Research Practices in the Anthropocene, edited by Geoffrey Rockwell, Chelsea Miya and Oliver Rossier.
- 'Open Education is key to the future of learning', a blog post by OBP author Patrick Blessinger on Open Education, with links to freely available resources and tools (including some of our Open Access textbooks) that might be useful for anyone trying to learn at home, or trying to support someone else in learning at home.
- Reflections on Open Education from our textbook authors, with links to their books (all free to read online, download and share).
- A blog post from our ScholarLed and COPIM colleague Vincent van Gerven Oei of punctum books: 'Viral Open Access in Times of Global Pandemic'.
- A blog post written for the COPIM project by our editor Lucy Barnes, about the organisation of a thirty-person remote workshop: what worked, what didn't, what you might like to try.
- These aren't books, but articles: all articles from the SciELO Brazil journals on the novel coronavirus are being published in the SciELO in Perspective blog.
- 'Now is the time for Open Access policies: here's why', a post from Victoria Heath and Brigitte Vézina on the Creative Commons blog.
- COMING SOON: A blog post by Rachel Archer, one of the authors of our recently published book, Non-Communicable Disease Prevention: Best Buys, Wasted Buys and Contestable Buys, about the importance of Open Access for disease control and medical research.
In this list you'll find platforms and repositories that host Open Access content or help you to discover Open Access content (primarily books, because that's what we know most about).
Note: this isn't content that has had its paywall temporarily lifted—this content is freely available to use and reuse always. It's Open Access.
- All of our books are available Open Access.
- If you're looking for our textbooks in particular, they can be found here.
- Check out OAPEN and the Directory of Open Access Books (DOAB) for thousands of Open Access books on topics of all kinds.
- Go to OpenStax, OER Open Textbooks and the Open Textbook Library for Open Access textbooks.
- There are a large number of other presses who publish all their books Open Access, to be read, shared and reused freely in perpetuity. They include: punctum books, Mattering Press, Open Humanities Press, meson press, White Rose University Press, UCL Press, Huddersfield University Press, Goldsmiths University Press, University of Westminster Press, Cardiff University Press, Lever Press, Amherst College Press, and more.
- These aren't books, but journal articles and research papers can be found in CORE (the world’s largest collection of open access research papers) and the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).
- You can also use Unpaywall and the Open Access Button to search for an Open Access version of any article. If there's a legally OA version—e.g. in an insitutional repository—these tools should find it.
- Also check out the Open Library of the Humanities, a great model for Open Access journal publishing.
- An editable guide to 'Digital resources to support online learning' can be found here, created by Jane Secker (City, University of London) and Yvonne Nobis (University of Cambridge). N.B. It includes a number of Open Access resources, but also resources that are not Open Access but have been made temporarily free to access in response to the current crisis.
- 'Stuck at home? View cultural heritage collections online', a post by Dr Mia Ridge of the British Library, about how to discover free online access to 'images of artefacts and information about them'.