Insights continuous publication case study

  • Charlie Rapple
  • Insights the UKSG journal, January 2019, Ubiquity Press, Ltd.
  • DOI: 10.1629/uksg.466

What is involved in taking a journal from issue-by-issue publication to continuous publication?

Photo by Emma Matthews on Unsplash

Photo by Emma Matthews on Unsplash

What is it about?

"Continuous publication" of a journal means publishing each article as soon as it is ready, rather than grouping them into issues published only 3 or 4 times a year. It is a relatively new model, made possible by the transition from print publishing to digital publishing. I am on the editorial board of the Insights journal, which recently decided to move to a continuous publication model (having gone "e-only", i.e. stopped printing issues, a few years ago). The process of moving to continuous publication was actually pretty straightforward, and the editorial board agreed that it would be useful to write this up as a case study to help other editorial boards / publishers considering making the same transition.

Why is it important?

It's important to share experiences of a project like this: • to try and reduce duplication of the effort involved in considering or planning such a change • to build up evidence of the benefits of making such a change • to inspire other journals / editorial boards / publishers to consider such a change by showing that it need not be a painful or costly transition.

Perspectives

Charlie Rapple
Kudos

I don't have the data to know how many journals have already made this transition, but in my experience many journals are still structured around an issue-by-issue based approach to publishing, which might seem surprising, 20+ years since the first journals moved online. But of course many journals still have printed editions. You can of course run both models at once - publishing articles online as soon as they are ready (sometimes called "online first" or "fast track"), and then compiling these into printed issues - and I would be interested to know how many journals have at least adopted that approach, as really in this day and age (both in terms of digital capabilities, but also in terms of author expectations) it seems ludicrous to be allowing publication (i.e. the dissemination of knowledge!) to be held up by a print schedule.

Read Publication

http://dx.doi.org/10.1629/uksg.466

The following have contributed to this page: Charlie Rapple