JOB OPENING: P/T COMMUNITY CONVENER
MAY 1-OCTOBER 31, 2022 | REMOTE POSITION
Libraria is a collective of researchers based in the social sciences who seek to bring about a more open, diverse, community-controlled scholarly communication system. We invite applications for a part-time convener to help build a community of practice among scholar-led, “diamond” (APC-free) open access publications in anthropology and adjacent fields. The convener will build on the findings and recommendations of Libraria’s 2021 report, Exploring Mutuality: A Report on Independent Open Access Publications in the Social Sciences, as part of Libraria’s Cooperate for Open initiative. This remote position, which has been funded on a fixed-term basis by a group of U.S. research libraries, is suitable for applicants from a wide range of backgrounds from scholarly publishing to community organizing.
The ongoing effort to transition legacy journals to open access has garnered outsized attention. Meanwhile, a cohort of small, independent publications, which are already freely accessible to both authors and readers, risks being overlooked. These publications are edited and published by scholars, with modest, precarious budgets and a minimum of professional support, not infrequently as a “labor of love.”
Libraria regards these often resolutely experimental publications as a vital part of the publishing ecology in the disciplines we represent. At the same time, our research has surfaced issues of isolation, burnout, and duplication of effort that may limit their impact. Based on surveys and focus groups of scholar-publishers, we know that these publications are open to exploring new forms of cooperation, but may resist technocratic proposals to standardize their processes or outputs. Thus, Libraria aims to facilitate a social infrastructure that will allow these publications to share knowledge on their own terms, while potentially setting the stage for a broader cooperative venture.
- Work with the Libraria project team to identify the publications that will be invited to form the initial core of the community of practice
- Organize and facilitate meetings and other activities on behalf of this emerging community of practice, which may include identifying digital tools to support the group’s work, as well as ways of cooperation on a pilot basis
- Participate in discussions with peer initiatives and prospective partner organizations
- Document, assess, and report on the group’s activities in written formats that can be shared with community of practice members as well as with external stakeholders
- Prepare a final report on lessons learned leading to recommendations for the various futures of independent social science journals.
REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS AND SKILLS
- Understanding of scholarly publishing and research communication;
- Ability to work independently in a self-directed manner to achieve project goals;
- Organizing or other community-building experience in non-profit settings;
- Excellent English-language communication skills;
- Skills in preparing and writing reports for multiple audiences.
EXPERIENCE AND SKILLS THAT WOULD BE AN ASSET
- Experience working with scholarly publications in any capacity;
- Experience with cooperatives and mutual aid societies;
- Financial analysis of nonprofits and other organizations;
- Communication skills in languages other than English.
RATE OF PAY
$40-50/hr (USD) based on experience and qualifications. Appointment for up to 80 hours per month for six months, with the work to be carried out between May 1 and October 31, 2022. (Appointment will be as a contract employee of the Public Knowledge Project, a Core Facility of Simon Fraser University.)
Applicants should send a pitch email (akin to a cover letter, but less formal) to Jesse Rivas firstname.lastname@example.org outlining why they should be selected, along with a CV and a list of 2-3 references with contact information. Please put “Libraria Community Convener” in the subject line.
Applications will be reviewed as they come in, but should be received by March 15, 2022 for full consideration. We plan to conduct video interviews with short-listed applicants by the end of March.