Providing an Incentive: Developing Publishing Services for Researchers

Sara Fuchs, Julie Griffin Speer, Heather Jeffcoat

Full Text: Presentation


Georgia Tech Library introduced its SMARTech institutional repository in 2004 as a trusted repository for archiving the intellectual output of campus.   The substantial size of the repository – at over 23,000 items - is due partly to the recent expansion of our program to include publishing services, to an increase in marketing efforts, and to an emphasis on developing more substantial partnerships with individual faculty and academic service units.

The EPAGE@Tech publishing program was first launched in 2006 to provide technical support for researchers’ publishing endeavors; services include lecture recording, open access journal support, and conference proceedings support.  Both the repository and publishing services utilize existing open source tools such as DSpace for repositories, Open Journal System (OJS) software for journal publishing, and Open Conference System (OCS) software for producing conference proceedings.   EPAGE@Tech offers GT researchers the digital tools they need to connect with peers at various points in the scholarly communication cycle, in addition to the service we offer to archive the final product of their collaborations.

Our experience has shown that the repository and publishing services have a greater chance of success if marketed effectively. Within the library, our marketing efforts focus on the library staff with the closest connection to faculty members – the subject liaison librarians. The growing number of faculty and academic departments we’ve become involved with is largely due to their achievements promoting our digital services.  The programs we organize on scholarly communication topics, as well as the subject liaisons’ promotion activities, are successfully expanding our outreach to faculty on scholarly communication issues and the marketing of our digital services.

Outside of the library, we’re partnering with Georgia Tech’s Distance Learning and Professional Education department to host OCS for their clients, and the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program to host OJS for the campus student research journal. We also recently completed an extensive customization of an open access journal we’re producing, based on feedback from the editorial board. The customization involved a complete redesign of the smarty templates and the CSS. We also created new plug-ins and modified existing ones to add additional functionality. Our relationship with the faculty editor serves as a model for us in terms of successful library/faculty collaborations and the importance of tailoring your service to meet the needs of local scholars.

We’ll focus in this presentation on lessons learned from our partnerships, marketing efforts, and experience customizing and branding an OJS interface, as well as the technical and workflow issues involved in archiving and disseminating in SMARTech the research output produced through EPAGE@Tech.


scholarly communication; digital initiatives; library publishing services; open access initiatives