The MIT Press has announced the launch of MIT Open Publishing Services, a scholar-focused, MIT-branded hosting and publishing services operation.
MIT Open Publishing Services (MITops), working with its partner the Knowledge Futures Group, provides a portfolio of services to mission-aligned partners, including peer review support and editorial development; professional copy editing and design; marketing and publicity; and hosting on the PubPub open source platform.
The MIT Press believes that the full potential of institutionally owned and managed infrastructure will be realized by pairing publishing technology innovation with economic incentives that will make it possible for the academy to reclaim the marketplace for scholarly communications. “This model will accelerate the shift away from the academy’s growing dependence on large multinational information service providers,” says Amy Brand, director and publisher of the MIT Press. “Because we are mission-aligned with the institutional environments that we serve, we can meet the needs of researchers, authors, and readers ‘where they are.’”
One of the first projects published with support from the MITops program is a new case studies series that examines the social, ethical, and policy challenges of present-day efforts in computing. Published as part of the Social and Ethical Responsibilities of Computing (SERC) cross-cutting program within the MIT Stephen A. Schwarzman College of Computing and edited by associate deans David Kaiser and Julie Shah, the series aims to facilitate the development of responsible “habits of mind and action” for those who create and deploy computing technologies.
The inaugural set of cases in the series places readers in various settings that challenge them to consider the social and ethical implications of computing technologies, such as how social media services and surveillance tools are built; the racial disparities that can arise from deploying facial recognition technology in unregulated, real-world settings; the biases of risk prediction algorithms in the criminal justice system; and the politicization of data collection. New sets of case studies will be published twice a year on the PubPub platform.
“It has been such a pleasure working with the MITops team to launch our new peer-reviewed, open-access MIT Case Studies series in Social and Ethical Responsibilities of Computing,” notes David Kaiser, Germeshausen Professor of the History of Science and professor of physics at MIT. “The PubPub platform is easy to use and embodies many of the values we aim to highlight in SERC. More than that, the MITops team is passionate about enabling equitable, accessible scholarly publishing — of finding new, sustainable ways to share hard-won knowledge broadly. I am thrilled that Issue 1 is now available, and I look forward to working with the team for Issue 2 and beyond.”