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Friday, November 9 • 10:45am - 11:45am
Understanding Open Access Ebook Usage: Toward a Common Framework

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It is often said that an OA book will be more often downloaded, used, and cited than a comparable restricted-access title. Publishers need to demonstrate such impact to receive support for their open access programs, funders look for usage data to demonstrate return on their investments, and authors are eager to show evidence of additional reach and influence for their work. Because of differences in the supply chain, however, information about the impact of academic ebooks, especially OA books, is much more difficult to gather, analyze, and communicate than comparable information about electronic journals. A project led by the Book Industry Study Group in collaboration with KU Research, the Educopia Institute, and researchers from the University of Michigan and and University of North Texas Libraries, has been working to identify the challenges in understanding the usage of OA ebooks, suggest some opportunities for resolving them, and create a framework for future action through community consultation. The project is focused on the challenges of identifying and aggregating relevant information from different platforms, analyzing what has been gathered in ways that respect user privacy, and communicating relevant information about usage to stakeholders. An important objective is to connect strands of research currently being conducted separately in the United States and Europe, by both for-profit and non-profit entities. Following the conclusion of this research project in May 2019, BISG will publish a white paper of findings and propose a pathway for future action. A preview of this white paper is released in fall 2018. The audience can expect to leave this session with an understanding of the OA ebook landscape, an appreciation of the challenges to be overcome in measuring usage and engagement with OA ebooks, and some ideas of how librarians, publishers, and vendors can help.

avatar for Kevin Hawkins

Kevin Hawkins

Assistant Dean for Scholarly Communications, University of North Texas Library
University of North Texas
avatar for Brian O'Leary

Brian O'Leary

Executive Director, Book Industry Study Group
Brian O’Leary is Executive Director of the Book Industry Study Group (BISG), a U.S.-based trade association that works to create a more informed, effective and efficient book industry supply chain. He oversees the work BISG does to disseminate information, create and implement standards... Read More →
avatar for Katherine Skinner

Katherine Skinner

Executive Director, Educopia Institute
avatar for Charles Watkinson

Charles Watkinson

Associate University Librarian, University of Michigan
Charles Watkinson is Associate University Librarian for Publishing at University of Michigan Libraries and Director of University of Michigan Press. Prior to moving to Michigan in 2014, Charles was Director of Purdue University Press and Head of Scholarly Publishing Services in Purdue... Read More →

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