What is the ‘Scientific Cloud for Books’?
Although books represent a fundamental tool for the dissemination of knowledge and career advancement in universities, they have remained on the sidelines of the digital revolution that has involved other forms of scientific literature, such as scientific journals.
Firenze University Press coined the label ‘FUP Scientific Cloud for Books’ to promote an ecosystem of high-quality scientific books, bridging the gap with journals and taking full advantage of digital tools. The Scientific Cloud is designed to ensure greater visibility and impact for monographs and collective volumes, by providing the academic community with new and more effective tools for publishing research results.
The Scientific Cloud describes in a systematic and comprehensive way, through a metadata cloud, all the fundamental aspects of a scientific book: authorship, evaluation process, publishing formats, dissemination tools, accessibility, and impact metrics. In other words, the creation, evaluation, dissemination, and archiving of a book are no longer complementary elements, but intrinsic characteristics certifying its value and quality. In this way, all the crucial features of a volume are properly described and made easily actionable by researchers, research institutions, panels of evaluators of competing projects, public funders and, in general, by the community of students and readers.
Thanks to the Scientific Cloud, FUP fulfils its role as a non-profit and public publisher, offering authors and scholars an open and inclusive publishing environment based on sustainable business models and copyright policies that enhance research accessibility. As we encourage an equal participation and distribution of knowledge, Open Access is the most obvious choice to disseminate research, measuring its impact in terms of views and downloads through certifiable metrics.
What is the ‘Scientific Cloud for Books’?
Content provided by authors and curators is at the heart of a book. However, one should not forget that books need other contributors: they are selected by a publisher, discussed with the series’ editor, evaluated by a scientific committee, and certified through a peer-review process.
The "FUP Scientific Cloud for Books" project captures these fundamental features through the adoption of appropriate editorial practices and specific metadata. The result is a next-generation digital edition enhancing the dissemination and impact potential of monographs, while certifying the processes and actors involved at each publishing step.
In a communication ecosystem where metadata and scientific dissemination go hand in hand, metadata becomes co-responsible for the success of a publication.
Each volume published in the Firenze University Press catalogue adheres to the following editorial best practices in relation to four main areas:
- Author-related information is identified by a well-defined set of metadata. This means that the authors of books or individual chapters and the curators of a volume are systematically described using simple but effective metadata: name/surname, affiliation, nationality, ORCID, email (Author List).
- Each volume clearly states the characteristics of the evaluation process it has undergone. Each book and essay in the volume has a link to the publisher's Referee List on the website, to the composition and role of the Scientific Board members of the series, to the best publishing practices applied to the evaluation process (ethical, peer-review, access, copyright and user license policies, FUP’s Best Practices in Scholarly Publishing).
- In order to increase both the visibility of each individual author and the dissemination and impact of each research product, all miscellaneous volumes are also published as individual book chapters. Moreover, all volumes adopt the best international standards in scholarly publishing, which include assigning DOIs to books and book chapters, registering the ISBN number for books, assigning an ISSN number to series and encouraging authors and publishers to provide an ORCID identification code. Finally, books and book chapters are published in multi-format digital editions (PDF, epub, html or xml) as well as in print, with a focus on machine-readable formats designed for both machine learning (IR) and index- and aggregator-based dissemination processes.
Access, dissemination and impact:
- Open access: Digital Open Access publishing is the preferred, though not exclusive, form of publication. FUP supports open access publishing as the main tool for sharing ideas and knowledge in all disciplines with an open, collaborative, and non-profit approach. Open access books and book chapters allow for extensive and rapid dissemination in all book formats, while ensuring the highest impact. All FUP content and metadata are published in open access, and released under Creative Commons licences identifying the author as the copyright holder (Open Access Policy).
- Dissemination: In order to increase discoverability, accessibility and sharing of scientific research, FUP engages in a continuous indexing activity of its books and book chapters on platforms dedicated to dissemination, research and archiving. At the same time, it supports and encourages libraries, as well as for-profit and non-profit indexing services, to list FUP’s series, books, and book chapters among their electronic resources. All book metadata is available for download in multiple formats from any indexing service (Distribution, Indexing and Abstracting Policy).
- Impact: For each book and book chapter published, FUP provides the author with periodically updated metrics related to views and downloads statistics, according to the standards currently in use for ranking and evaluation processes (The COUNTER Code of Practice for Release 5).
FUP Scientific Cloud for Books in Numbers
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