The Big Ten Academic Alliance supports Fund to Mission from the University of Michigan Press

by Charles Watkinson on August 5, 2021

The Big Ten Academic Alliance (BTAA) and the University of Michigan Press (UMP) have signed a three-year agreement that provides multi-year support for Fund to Mission from all fifteen member libraries.

Fund to Mission is the Press’s open access monograph model that aligns with its mission and commitment to equity, justice, inclusion, and accessibility. The model demonstrates a return to the origins of the university press movement and moves toward a more open, sustainable infrastructure for the humanities and social sciences. It is one of several programs that university presses are developing to expand the reach of their specialist publications.

With this model, UMP aims to convert at least 75% of its frontlist monographs to open access by the end of 2023, without any author ever having to pay. The Press is working to build a sustainable model by achieving stable funding for this monograph program from three sources: annual funding from the library community, recurring funds from the University of Michigan, and other funder payments. The commitment from BTAA builds on support from a number of libraries and consortia as well as additional funding from the Provost at U-M. 

“The Fund to Mission model advances the goals of the Big Ten Academic Alliance by supporting not only open content but open infrastructure,” states Rob Van Rennes, Associate Director, Library Initiatives for the BTAA. “We couldn’t be happier to join U-M Press in creating an equitable, sustainable infrastructure for our members and the broader community.”

The Big Ten Academic Alliance members are: Indiana University, Michigan State University, Northwestern University, The Ohio State University, Pennsylvania State University, Purdue University, Rutgers University–New Brunswick, University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, University of Iowa, University of Maryland, University of Michigan, University of Minnesota, University of Nebraska–Lincoln, University of Wisconsin–Madison, and the University of Chicago.

“We are thrilled to have the support of the BTAA,” says James Hilton, Dean of Libraries and Vice Provost for Academic Innovation at the University of Michigan. “The support from this community of libraries allows the Press to continue offering the highest quality humanities and social science scholarship on a platform that is built to support it in a way that is equitable, inclusive, and accessible for all authors and users.”

Learn more about the Fund to Mission open access model here.

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