University of Helsinki: The University’s scholarly publisher promotes open science and publishing

Helsinki University Press (HUP) is an open scholarly publishing house operating under Helsinki University Library, whose publishing activities have rapidly grown and become increasingly international in its first two years of operations. HUP is a concrete way of promoting open science and publishing: it helps consolidate the operating models of open access publishing and serves as an example to others.

Through peer review processes, HUP ensures that its publications are topical and of international interest. The publisher also invests in the editing, graphic design, and findability of its publications.

Readers in more than 150 countries
HUP is open for everyone: it also publishes books by scholars from outside the University of Helsinki. Contributors to its first 18 books come from 69 different universities and research institutes located in 27 countries. In the first two years of operations, the Press’ publications have been downloaded and viewed almost 45,000 times in more than 150 countries.

“We consider it important that our publications reach a global audience. We actively reach out to scholarly journals to have our books reviewed,” says Anna-Mari Vesterinen, HUP’s communications manager and managing editor.

“We also make sure that our publications are distributed through multiple digital channels to various audiences. This way, our open access publications reach not only researchers, but also decision-makers and NGO representatives.”

Guardians of quality from the world’s top universities
The publisher’s operations have been made increasingly international in nature by inviting people from international universities to join its editorial board. For the term 2021–2024, members were appointed from, among other institutions, the University of Cambridge, the London School of Economics and Political Science, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and Stockholm University.

“Collaboration with representatives of top universities increases the credibility of the publishing house in the international field of scholarly publishing,” Vesterinen says.

At the moment, the editorial board has strong representation from Finnish universities as well as renowned British and American universities.

“In the future, the aim is to have members of the editorial board also from Central Europe as well as from the Global South,” Publishing Director Leena Kaakinen says.

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