The UC Office of Scholarly Communication has created a new resource for faculty who have questions about open access book publishing. Created by a working group that included faculty, librarians, and a representative from UC Press, the newly created OA books FAQ is intended to address some questions that faculty may have about their OA publishing options and provide links to additional resources that will help faculty navigate this landscape.

Open access publishing has been growing for the last two decades, but that growth has so far been largely confined to journal articles.  However, as open access publishing has become more commonplace, interest in publishing books open access has also grown.  Most commercial publishers now offer open access publishing options for book authors, and open access publishing initiatives have grown in the nonprofit publishing sector as well.  The TOME (Towards an Open Monograph Ecosystem) program, NEH Humanities Open Book program, the Sustainable History Monograph Pilot, and others have made open access publishing more commonplace in recent years.  UC has also introduced initiatives through both eScholarship and UC Press’s Luminos program that make it possible to publish books open access.  

Erich van Rijn, interim director of UC Press explains: “As open access publishing options for books have proliferated so too have questions about how to pursue OA publishing options. Books have distinguishing characteristics, such as a continuing preference by many readers for print that distinguish them from journal articles, which can make the decision about whether or not to pursue these options a difficult and complex one.”  

This OA books FAQ is intended to help demystify OA book publishing, and provide additional resources to faculty who wish to contribute to the growing body of open access books that are now available to readers throughout the world.