Liverpool University Press (LUP) has been at the forefront of Open Access (OA) since 2010 (as part of OAPEN-UK with Jisc). We were the first publisher to sign up to Knowledge Unlatched; we launched Modern Languages Open in 2014, a peer-reviewed online platform for the OA publication of research from across the modern languages; we have created innovative OA e-textbooks, developed hybrid journals as well as flipped journals with OHL, and have published many open monographs over the years. In 2021, we will publish an open monograph in the Sustainable History Monograph Project and over the last eighteen months we have developed a Digital Collaboration Hub on Manifold to provide OA resources to support our authors and their publications.
As OA becomes more important to academics, a key question for many of our authors is how they go about publishing an open monograph with LUP. The main point to understand is that when it comes to considering an open monograph, the book proposal and the subsequent contracted manuscript go through the exact same peer-review procedure as our non-OA publications. An outline of this can be found here, which also shows our OA books going through the same quality production process and undergoing the same extensive marketing activities as all our other publications. The only difference between a non-OA book and an OA book is the final format and the pricing. For a non-OA monograph, the book will be published as a hardback and ebook (third party rights permitting), with a paperback edition published within three years of the hardback publication. For an OA monograph, the book will be published as a free ebook available to download on our website and the Oapen Library, plus an affordable paperback edition (or a low-price hardback if the required funding was acquired after the initial hardback was announced).
To support LUP with the costs in publishing your monograph OA, there are several options available. One option is to acquire funding from your research grant provider or institution to cover the book processing charge (BPC), which helps LUP with the editorial, production, marketing, and overhead costs incurred in publishing your book to our usual high standard, and ensure it is freely available digitally for readers on publication. Another option is to ask LUP to submit your work to an OA initiative, such as Knowledge Unlatched or the Sustainable History Monograph Project. Whilst success in these projects is not guaranteed, it is an option to consider if your institution is unable to cover the BPC. Alternatively, you can publish your manuscript as part of our Green OA policy. Whilst this does mean it won’t be your LUP copy-edited, typeset, final published manuscript that is available freely on a non-commercial, non-profit platform 24 months after the hardback publication of your LUP book, it does ensure that an OA edition of your work is possible in the future. Finally, here at LUP we have established an Open Access Author Fund, where LUP authors may donate all or part of their royalties to the Fund and LUP match all contributions. This Fund is then used to support the OA publication of early career scholars in the humanities and social sciences, and we are truly grateful to our generous authors for supporting this initiative and helping others in this way. Two books recently published by the Fund are Dr Jessica Moody’s The Persistence of Memory: Remembering Slavery in Liverpool, ‘slaving capital of the world’ and Dr Hilary Mc Laughlin-Stonham’s From Slavery to Civil Rights: On the streetcars of New Orleans 1830s-Present.
LUP prides itself on author care, continuously striving to provide the best publishing experience. Whether it is your complete book being made OA, or just a chapter, or whether it is OA resources in addition to your monograph uploaded on our Digital Collaboration Hub, we are always happy to discuss OA options and explore new ideas with our authors, supporting them, their work, our readers and the academic community as much we can.