Last year, as part of our commitment to partnership, Silverchair assembled specialized Publisher Working Groups.

The working groups are time-bound and focus on topics surfaced at Silverchair Forum events, shared areas of interest between multiple publishers, and/or industry initiatives and market trends. These working groups serve as a venue for publisher-to-publisher collaboration on shared challenges, an opportunity to explore publisher and platform co-development projects, and a direct line of feedback to the Silverchair Product team's platform development plan.  While participation on working groups is encouraged of all publishers, Silverchair sought to include representatives from publishers who are trendsetters in working group topics, as well as those who are facing unique challenges or opportunities.

The working groups met over the course of six months to discuss the problem space, market insights and research, possible features, content or platform use-cases, and high-level requirements on the following topics:

  • Text and Data Mining
  • Future First Class Publication Objects
  • Curation & Commerce
  • University Presses
Over a series of blog posts, we'll share summaries from each group's activities, before announcing our 2021 working group topics.

Text and Data Mining

As access and readability continue to evolve, this group asked what content and platform features are needed to serve our new era of scholarship, publishing, and commerce. At an immediate and practical level, this evolution requires Silverchair and publishers to improve our content and platform features for text and data mining users and use cases.

Discussions included:

  • Establishing the current model and platform functionality
  • Identifying and creating personas for TDM functionality
  • Sketching out ideal products and user experiences
  • Outlining what TDM rights would look like for certain content types
  • Scoping out new commerce capabilities to satisfy TDM needs

Publisher goals:

  • Having a universal setup so that they can meet the needs of as many systems that researchers might be using as possible
  • Surfacing / capturing additional information for inclusion in content
  • Establishing best practices; i.e. better practices on linking metadata and related articles, thereby making connections that aren't initially obvious between papers
  • Using TDM to demonstrate social impact of research + outputs;

Takeaways:

The volume of requests for TDM is currently low but increasing, so publishers want to get ahead of the curve in developing TDM offerings. As such, it’s important for publishers to have a platform that is as mine-able as possible rather than creating specific solutions. Outside of the platform, TDM rights need to start being incorporated into institutional licensing arrangements. Finally, there are ongoing conversations among publishers and researchers around what should be machine-readable? In looking at the inclusion of more granular tagging, it’s important to consider the tradeoffs between value derived and time taken to tag content. This group not only helped elevate and inform the thinking of the publishers involved, but directly inform platform thinking around the TDM roadmap and Silverchair's approach.

 

Next up: Future First Class Publication Objects

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