The Future of Research Communications and e-Scholarship

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SSP logo Logo design by @tarleb CC

The Single Source Publishing Community (SSPC) is focused on scholarly publishing and is a meeting place for researchers, educators, publishers, and software developers. The community looks to help Single Source Publishing (SSP) technology to work better for Open Access, Open Science, in learning, and for Bibliodiversity. Drop in on our discussion board, join the monthly ‘SSPC Show & Tell’ sessions, or become a member.

Single Source Publishing is an approach to publishing workflows to easily produce diverse publication output formats from only a single data source – e.g., from one dataset in Markdown or XML to make a multi-format publications as HTML, PDF, and JATS/XML, etc.

Building together

The community is motivated by two questions:

  • firstly, wanting to see Open Access literature, learning materials, and Open Science research outputs liberated; and
  • secondly, bringing together the different camps in publishing – whether from around formats, tooling, or workflows.

As a techno/social community we see open-source technologies for SSP as an important building block for efficient workflows, interoperability, and a richer computational environment to put research and Open Education Resources to work. The idea for SSPC came about at a session at the Barcamp Open Science Berlin 2021.

Openness and participation

A number of activities are organised by the community:

  • a discussion board to act as a place for Q&As and coordination;
  • as monthly SSPC ‘Show & Tell’ informal events where participants will be invited to show off their products, projects, and research; and lastly
  • occasional BarCamps / Book Dashes aimed at publishing guides on key SSP topics.

The discussion board is the heart of the community. You’re welcome to make announcements, share ideas, or if you have a question about publishing use the Q&A section. We practice OpenNoteBook Science (no insider knowledge) as promoted by Jean Claude Bradley, to this end you will also find on the discussion board the planning for the ‘Show & Tell’ events.

Challenges of open-source technology

The open-source technological field of SSP faces two key challenges:

  • Firstly, neither the market (publishers) or public sector (academia) have not got the basic computational plumbing of document publishing into a workable and sane state – instead collectively we work with half-baked infrastructures and technologies.
  • Secondly, with Open Science and Scholarship we are entering a welcomed phase where a wider variety of digital objects from the whole research life cycle have to be taken into account – data, smart figures, code, versioning, translations, and PIDs, etc. To add to the complexity we have ‘literate programming’ to add to the mix – where written text and executable code are side-by-side in a document such as in ‘Jupyter Notebooks’.

Shared values for technical knowledge infrastructure

The SSPC is part of the Open Science and Scholarship movement, which can be seen as in part being about creating technical knowledge infrastructure, but also about a loose set of social considerations around – accessibility, diversity, equality, and equity – which are important to address imbalances and bias in academia, in our communities, and globally. The UNESCO Recommendations on Open Science (See: Draft, CL/4349) demonstrate the connection between Open Science and society.

Led by open principles

The community is organised in the style of an academic working group – but with a few work-in-progress principles: working in the spirit of Open Science and Scholarship; organise the community to address diversity and equality; transparency; OpenNoteBook Science; and, full open licencing, attribution, and citation.

Licensed as Creative Commons — Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0) from this Github repository.


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