KU Spotlight Newsletter: Issue 4
Featured in this issue: Past and upcoming KU webinars, e.g., on the S2O model, in September, the Berghahn Open Anthro, Pluto Open Journals, EDP Sciences Open Mathematics and IWA Publishing Open Journals collections, as well as summer season reading recommendations from KU's library team.
Welcome to the August 2021 issue of KU's Newsletter.
Although summer months are the time many of us spend traveling and relaxing, KU is busy gearing up for the fall pledging season.
If you missed our May/June webinars, you may view the recordings online (including the webinars for North America, Europe, the UK, and German-speaking countries). You will also be able to register for the new regional webinars soon.
Given our global presence and multilingual staff, our webinars are not only held in English but also in other languages, including German, Spanish, Portuguese, and Hebrew. Please follow this link to find all 2021 webinars in one place.
Meanwhile, our two upcoming Subscribe-to-Open (S2O) webinars (for North America and Europe) focus on a business model proving to offer a sustainable route to converting scholarly journal content to OA. Here we highlight the four HSS and STEM S2O offerings we'll be discussing in the webinars:
Lastly, for many of us at KU, summer is the time to discover new books and authors, so we are highlighting below what our Library team is currently reading. Perhaps you will find some of these suggestions worth your time.
Stay well and enjoy the rest of your summer.
Alexandra, Amir, Bob, Carolina, Catherine, Elaine, Laurens, Max, Mirela, Olaf, Pablo, Philipp, Udit, Wilson, and Sven
KU's Sales team recommends
This novel by Jean Kwok, which takes place in New York City and the Netherlands, is part mystery part drama about the relationship between two Chinese-American sisters and their immigrant mother. The story is told from three perspectives and reveals a series of secrets about the family. I was most drawn to the characters, the detailed descriptions of their Chinese culture, and their immigrant experience. A worthwhile mystery with a surprise ending. -- Alexandra Brown
On these warm summer nights, I want to read something light yet thrilling. Enter Agatha Christie's Whodunit novels and the great detective Hercule Poirot. As a child, I was a big fan of the eccentric, somewhat arrogant but brilliant detective who can solve even the most complex mysteries. His early novels The Mysterious Affair at Styles and The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, are both clever, humorous and with a great twist at the showdown. -- Amir Kahana
John Lawton's Inspector Troy series delves into the life and work of Frederick Troy, son of a transplanted Russian-born publishing icon, who has left the usual pursuits of the British upper class to become a cop. His escapades, covering mainly from the 1930s into the 1960s are colorful and eventful. The dialogue is bright and cosmopolitan, with lively action made more interesting by the occasional appearance of various historical figures. -- Bob Schatz
Thanks to a recommendation from my colleague Bob, I am currently reading Walter Tevis’ The Queen’s Gambit. I loved the Netflix series, but the book adds a whole new level of richness of feelings and more insight into Beth’s complex mind. It’s a short read at just under 250 pages and I couldn’t put it down much of the time. I know very little about the game of chess but still found the game scenes incredibly gripping. I recommend this whether you have seen the series or not. -- Catherine Anderson
During the summer months, I read a lot of what my friends call 'fluff.' This includes ‘beach reads’ and books by authors like Susan Mallary and Susan Wiggs, with some John Grisham or Lisa Scottoline titles thrown in the mix for a little intrigue. My favorite author now is Elin Hilderbrand. Her books take place on the island of Nantucket (US) where you are whisked away to an idyllic place filled with interesting people with complicated stories. Her latest, Golden Girl, is next on my reading list. -- Elaine Lambert
I am currently reading Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam Trilogy because my daughter and I decided to do it together for her summer reading requirements, and it has been fun to enjoy one of my favorite authors with her. While the subject matter isn’t light as it presents a dystopian future, Atwood brings her usual wit and flair to the characters, and we’ve had great discussions about how we would fare in a world gone quite mad. -- Jill Grogg
I gravitate toward literary works that feature rich ‘inner lives’ of protagonists thrown into challenging environments. Now that I am living in a new country, surrounded by the sound of a foreign language and the visuals of an unfamiliar culture, I am re-reading a novel by a Croatian writer living in exile. Dubravka Ugresic's The Ministry of Pain follows the lives of highly-educated immigrants in Amsterdam and the ways they cope with not belonging. -- Mirela Roncevic
I've been enjoying the audiobook version of Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now, the self-help bestseller that offers methods for putting an end to emotional suffering and achieving inner peace. Tolle teaches us to detach ourselves from our ‘ego,’ the part of the mind that seeks control over our thinking and behavior. He also teaches us that living in the past gives us depression while thinking about the future is the main cause of anxiety, so the best way to live is to ‘be’ in the present. -- Udit Tomar
The latest by Kazuo Ishiguro, winner of the 2017 Nobel Prize for Literature, is the story of a robot girl who is part of a line produced to serve as 'artificial friends' to children and teenagers. The perspective of a robot trying to understand human behavior moves us, yet it sometimes also disturbs us and makes us ponder about how we relate to technology.--Wilson de Souza
Subscribe-to-Open (S2O), the initiative to convert journal content to Open Access (OA), is much talked about by librarians and publishers alike. The model applies subscriber renewal funds to offset the costs associated with making journals OA and offers a viable alternative to the APC approach.
Like all OA, the success of S2O depends on library participation in order to spread the costs so no single institution is overburdened. KU is encouraged by the success of the model and we’ll be hosting two webinars on September 22nd for North American and European libraries to explain how the model works and provide details of our four S2O offerings.
Watch "5 minutes with Vivian Berghahn from Berghahn Books" video
Launched in 2020, Berghahn Open Anthro (BOA) is an S2O model piloted by Berghahn Books in partnership with Libraria. This model was developed in part through a 2019 ground-breaking collaborative meeting between publishers, libraries, funders, and OA experts held at MIT. The collection includes 13 highly-regarded anthropology journals, including Anthropological Journal of European Cultures and the Cambridge Journal of Anthropology. An additional journal will also be added to the collection in 2022. Libraries can upgrade to the full collection and contribute to BOA's sustainability.
Watch "5 minutes with Pauline Tiffen from the Journal of Fair Trade" video
Pluto Journals, the social sciences publisher based in London, has successfully reached the goal to flip its complete journal portfolio of 21 journals to OA from 2021 onwards. The press has asked the institutions subscribing to any of the journals to renew for 2021 on a S2O basis, thus helping to making these journals free to readers worldwide. Libraries contribute to the ongoing success of the initiative by upgrading to the full collection of 21 journals, including, among others, Decolonial Horizons, International Journal of Disability and Social Justice, and the Journal of Fair Trade.
Watch "5 minutes with Anne Ruimy from EDP Sciences" videoEDP Sciences was founded in 1920 by Nobel Prize winners Marie Curie and Paul Langevin and French learned societies. The publisher's-journals mainly cover Physics and Astrophysics, Mathematics, and Material Sciences and Engineering. This brand new S20 initiative seeks to take what is working well in the current system and applies it to achieving a sustainable and potentially universal OA model for mathematics. Contact KU for a targeted offer for your institution.
Watch "5 minutes with Sara Bosshart from IWA Publishing" video
In a world where water becomes an ever-scarcer resource, the journals published by the International Water Association Press (IWAP) become more relevant. The press publishes books and journals on all aspects of water, wastewater, and related environmental fields. From water science to technology, IWAP’s works provide in-depth, practical information useful to scientists, policymakers, and technicians. This S2O pledge opportunity is the continuation of an offering started last year that seeks OA support for a collection of ten journals.
Featured Image Credits: Downtown Miami Summer Morning, Miami, FL, USA, July 25, 2009 | © Courtesy of Lonny Paul/Flickr. Felbrigg Hall, Gardens & Estate (NT), Felbrigg, England, United Kingdom, June 4, 2012 | © Courtesy of Karen Roe/Flickr.