Bucknell University

A 2013 file photo of Rooke Chapel at Bucknell University. 

LEWISBURG — Bucknell University will use a $1 million grant to develop a liberal arts-based digital publishing cooperative.

The grant — from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, in partnership with the National Historical Publications and Records Commission — will allow Bucknell to partner with the Canadian Writing Research Collaboratory and Newcastle University, U.K.

The cooperative, led by principal investigator Diane Jakacki, Bucknell digital scholarship coordinator, will focus on peer-reviewed digital scholarly works. Susan Brown, of the Canadian collaboratory, and James Cummings, of Newcastle, will also be part of the leadership team.

“This grant was designed to find ways to better produce, publish and preserve digital scholarly editions,” says Jakacki. “Over the past decade, an increasing number of editors have sought to publish their work digitally, and some have assumed that they need to develop their own protocols, custom code sets and preservation mechanisms in order to do so. This has made sustainable institutional support for them very difficult. What this project will do is establish and disseminate protocol-driven, best practice, cooperative-based approaches to digital production and publication of these materials.” 

The group will develop an online editorial production, publication, dissemination and preservation framework for scholarly publishing.

Some of the grant’s initial anchor projects will be “Moravian Lives,” a digital collection led by Katherine Faull, a Bucknell German and comparative humanities professor; “Florentine Codex Project,” a collection led by Obed Lira, a Bucknell Spanish professor; and Jakacki’s REED London Online.

The grant is one of three $1 million awards by the Mellon Foundation to develop digital edition publishing cooperatives.

“These projects provide cutting-edge and sustainable models for the dissemination, use and preservation of original sources,” noted Mellon Foundation Program Officer Patricia Hswe. “They demonstrate the potential of digital technologies to strengthen interpretive scholarship, and in turn to advance our society’s shared understanding of history.” 

The funding will provide additional staffing, significant support for undergraduate research in digital humanities, and digital infrastructure to develop and manage the Bucknell Digital Press.

— Eric Pehowic

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