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Association of Research Libraries (ARL®)

  Advancing Scholarly Communication Contact:
Julia Blixrud

ARL New Model Publications Study, 2008

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More than a decade into the communication revolution initiated by the rise of the World Wide Web, the time is ripe to look across research fields and ask what new kinds of works researchers and scholars are using. Recognizing the largely unexplored diversity of new kinds of scholarly works, ARL initiated a study in 2008 to describe these new-model publications.

The study had two segments: the first phase—the field study—engaged librarian volunteers in arranging structured conversations with faculty members at their institutions to learn about new model publications that are currently in use by scholars and researchers, while the second phase consisted of interviews with selected managers of new model works and the preparation of a study report. ARL contracted with Ithaka to manage the field study and to write the final report based on analysis of the collected works.

Both the study report and a searchable collection of new model resources gathered during the study are now freely available. The report provides a detailed picture of the patterns and trends that have emerged to date. Emergent genres, disciplinary patterns, and peer review practices are all described. The accompanying searchable collection offers 206 examples of new model works along with descriptive information gathered for the study.

Over 300 librarians participated in the field study phase and interviewed hundreds of faculty members from across the disciplinary spectrum. They contributed records of more than 300 new kinds of scholarly works that are currently in use in a broad range of disciplines. ARL is very grateful to all of the librarians and faculty members who participated in the field study and would particularly like to thank the three institutions that pilot tested the field study materials and the other institutions that chose to participate by engaging all of their liaison librarians.

Pilot testing institutions:

University of British Columbia Libraries
Cornell University Libraries
University of Washington Libraries

Other institutional participants:

University of Alabama at Birmingham, Mervyn H. Sterne Library
Arizona State University Libraries
University of California, Irvine Libraries
Columbia University Libraries, Social Sciences Librarians
Dartmouth College Libraries
Johns Hopkins University, Welch Medical Library
University of Kansas Libraries
University of Louisville Libraries
University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Minnesota Libraries
University of Nebraska–Lincoln Libraries
New York University Libraries
University of Texas at Arlington Libraries
Vanderbilt University Libraries