Research Reports

PressForward White Papers

  • Winter 2012: Discovering Scholarship on the Open Web: Communities and Methods

    Online publications that aggregate content from a wide variety of sources have become increasingly valuable to readers and publishers. The academy, however, is still unsure how to efficiently identify, collect, survey, evaluate, and redistribute the valuable scholarly writing published both formally and informally on the open web. Fortunately, some scholarly communities are developing methods to draw attention to upcoming work in their fields.

    This report by project director Joan Fragaszy Troyano outlines the current state of the aggregation, curation, evaluation, and distribution of scholarship on the open web. The report covers the primary types of websites where open collections of scholarly work can be found, specifically repositories, aggregators, curated content, and forums for post-publication review. Also included is an eight-point rubric for analyzing similar sources of web-published scholarship and an annotated bibliography of outlets for scholarly communication on the open web.

    HTML | PDF

Project Reports

  • May, 2013: Survey of Scholarship Available on Scholarly Association and Community Websites

    Do visitors to the websites of professional scholarly associations and communities actually find any scholarship? This report by Caitlin Wolters, a George Mason MA Student and intern at PressForward, assesses the scholarly communication available on the websites of twelve professional associations and communities from the sciences and the humanities.Overall the sciences provide a more diverse and complete range of scholarly material for the public. Without the gray literature disseminated by scholarly communities within the humanities, very little humanities scholarly communication would be accessible on the open web.


  • April, 2013: Filtering Scholarly Writing from the Open Web using Active Learning SVM

    In this report Xin Guan, a graduate student of computer science at George Mason University, introduces the Support Vector Machine (SVM) program he developed to identify valuable pieces from the large pool of potential content for Digital Humanities Now. Those interested in the concepts and logistics behind the classifier program will be interested to read his explanation of the Active Learning method of Machine Learning he used.


  • February, 2013: Project Briefing for the Coalition for Networked Information

    This presentation provides an overview of current efforts to distribute and evaluate scholarly work available on the open web, and an explanation of the experimental methods behind PressForward’s Digital Humanities Now and Journal of Digital Humanities. It also includes a preview of the open source adaptations to WordPress software that PressForward is developing to enable scholarly communities to easily aggregate, select, and credit work published on the open web.

    The project briefing was presented to the Coalition for Networked Information 2012 fall membership meeting by Dan Cohen and Joan Fragaszy Troyano from the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History & New Media at George Mason University, and is now available on CNI’s two video channels.

    YouTube  | Vimeo

  • May, 2012: PressForward in Scholarly Communication Institute Report

    A report on Scholarly Production and Authoring from the Scholarly Communication Institute’s May 2012 is now available. Dan Cohen presented on PressForward at the meeting, which focused on experimental platforms for scholarly production, as well as shared concerns and opportunities for change in broader areas such as audience, building and sustaining communities, academic workflow, and the human and technical infrastructure that supports scholarly communication.

    Slide Deck [PDF]

  • December, 2011: “The Future of Digital Publishing” at HASTAC

    Dan Cohen presented on PressForward at the 2011 HASTAC conference at the University of Michigan. He was joined on the panel “The Future of Digital Publishing” by Tara McPherson and Richard Nash.

    In the panel, Cohen expand upon several points he’s made elsewhere, such as PressForward‘s pyramidal scheme of assessment, the notion that scholarship can come in many forms and should shape journals rather than vice versa, the hidden cost of perfection, and the affordances of digital publishing.

    Video of Presentation

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