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Garra aggregation as a model w2


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Garra aggregation as a model w2

  1. 1. Aggregation as a ModelAggregation as a Model for a Substainable Economy ?for a Substainable Economy ? The case of Cultural JournalsThe case of Cultural Journals Rosario GarraRosario Garra Ideas for a Possible World Ideas for a Possible World ECLAP 2012 Conference Workshop Open Access 2002-2012: “Condition of Possibilities” Florence, 2012 May 8
  2. 2. Issues of this ReportIssues of this Report I. CRIC: WHY THIS PROJECT? II. A FRAGMENTED ARCHIPELAGO III. THE RELATIONSHIPS WITH THE INSTITUTIONS IV. AN UNSOLVED PROBLEM V. DIGITAL CONTENTS: PRODUCTS AND COMMON GOODS VI. TOWARDS A NET COOPERATION? Workshop Open Access 2002-2012Workshop Open Access 2002-2012 Ideas for a Possible World Ideas for a Possible World
  3. 3. Cric: Why This Project? The HistoryCric: Why This Project? The History • The “Coordinamento Riviste Italiane di Cultura” (Cric, Coordinating Committee for Italian Cultural Journals) was founded in Rome in April 2003. • Cric was originally created to represent interdisciplinary and non academic Italian Journals. • The project involved associations which already existed and which shared interests and activities in the fields of research and cultural production such as the Aici (representing the Italian Cultural Foundations) and the Writer National Union. • Cric always led its project in full autonomy, organizing and financing its activities and gradually extending its offer to new journals and publishers • After that, some leading publishers in the Humanities and Social Science, joined Cric (Casalini, Clueb, Le Lettere, Olschki, Serra, Storia e Letteratura) • Actually Cric represents almost 300 journal titles.
  4. 4. Cric: Why This Project? The ProgramCric: Why This Project? The Program Main aims of CRIC are: • to encourage the dialogue among small publishing houses and cultural projects of journals, which otherwise can hardly aggregate because of their fragmentation • to facilitate the meeting between cultural periodicals and their potential readers (organizing and participating cultural debates, collective stands in Fairs, Internet communication) • to disseminate knowledge and reading journals in the circuits of education and information, through collective promotion projects aimed at schools, universities, libraries, mass-media • to increase the distribution of publications in bookshops and identify and test new and alternative sales channels.
  5. 5. The stand of Cric at International Book Fair Turin 2011
  6. 6. A Fragmented ArchipelagoA Fragmented Archipelago The field of culture periodicals is composed of many networks (institutional, associational, editorial, academic and other). It is difficult to fully understand the system because of the lack of data, information and analysis. There are no statistics about journals circulation. In 2006, Cric started a research on a sample of 100 publications. Just in April 2012, CRIC asked AGCOM (Communication Regulatory Authority) to access ROC (which is the Register of Communications Operators), in order to extend and update information about journals.
  7. 7. A Fragmented ArchipelagoA Fragmented Archipelago The following combination can be seen at the moment:  10 major publishing companies: 400 titles  Foundation and cultural institutions: 100 titles  Humanities and Social Science: 650 titles  Voluntary Sector: 250 titles  Theology and Religious Culture: 60 titles  Literary Reviews, online blogs: 200 titles or more
  8. 8. Journals Economic StructureJournals Economic Structure Cric 2006 Report Journals Owners Publishers 42 % Foundations 35 % Persons 17 % Institutions 6% Publishing Structure Publish Company 72% Self-Edition: 28% The owners and the publishers are often separate figures. The founders and curators of Journals frequently turn to a Publish Company for the management of the publishing and the marketing. 35% 6% Publishers Foundation Persons Institution 17% 42%
  9. 9. The Distribution ChannelsThe Distribution Channels Subscription 68% Bookshop 19% Newsstand 7% Fair 4% Export 2% The Subscriptions represent the main, and often almost exclusive, circulation channel for periodicals over the Italian market and abroad. In the last years, less and less libraries and bookshops choose to have journals in their collections.
  10. 10. Economic Model of the JournalsEconomic Model of the Journals Is a Trade Model sustainable as exclusive way of circulation of the Journals?  The large constellation of cultural projects, publishing initiatives and networks makes it almost impossible to identify a standard profile for a cultural journal, a single model of economic and productive management, a consolidated and shared circuit for the distribution and diffusion of journals and cultural magazines.  The diversity in strategies in the current system of information production allows the dialectic coexistence of management models followed both by commercial and non-commercial participants, both based on the assumption that information is a “public good”. (Yochai Benkler, La ricchezza della rete, Università Bocconi Editore 2007)
  11. 11. The Relationship with the InstitutionsThe Relationship with the Institutions One step back: The Institute of Book and Reading  When Cric was founded in 2003, I was working as a consultant of the Institute of Book and Reading, a board of The Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activity.  The cooperation between Cric and the Ministry represented a new opportunity for combining, among the Institute’s activities of public interest, projects and contents of cultural journals.  It was then possible to start a collaboration between Cric and the Institute for the Book, very similar to the one between Ent’Revue and the Centre du Livre in France and between Arce and the Ministry for Culture in Spain.  I personally took care of some initiatives of the Institute: the creation of the website <Italia Pianeta Libro> and the First Report on Cultural Journals in Italy.
  12. 12. The Book and Reading NetworkThe Book and Reading Network The website of the Institute for the Book “Italia Pianeta Libro” was created in May 2005, with the objective to increase the knowledge and synergies in the book’s world, and was meant to become a national reference point for the whole community of operators and readers. Information and data about Books and Journals were included in the website. The services online dedicated to the Publishing and Reading were gathered in the Portal of the Biblioteca Digitale Italiana (the Italian Digital Library and Cultural Tourism Network) called “Internet Culturale” – opened in 2005 by the General Direction of the Librarian Heritage of the MiBAC – which also provides access to the archives of libraries and cultural institutions and to the national library Catalogue and service search engine Opac.
  13. 13. Access to Journals’ Digital ContentsAccess to Journals’ Digital Contents The site opened specific communication spaces about journals contents:  the Guide “Cultural Journals in Italy” (which was available in print format as well),  the Section “Reading workshops” and the blog dedicated to the main themes of cultural debate in journals. In this way, articles and other online resources were made ​​ available to be used in projects organized by Cric in schools and libraries.
  14. 14. The website “Italia Pianeta Libro”The website “Italia Pianeta Libro”
  15. 15. An Unsolved ProblemAn Unsolved Problem Thanks to these initiatives, the relevance of cultural journals and their synergy with institutional projects for promotion and digitizing of cultural heritage was more and more taken into account. This kind of relationship with institutions, which involved journals in libraries, publishing and reading promotion, was interrupted in 2009, when the Institute was replaced by the Centre for the Book and Reading (Cepell) which radically cut the funding for these projects already in progress. Contributions for high cultural value journals were reduced and stopped, in discontinuity with tasks assigned to the Ministry and foreseen by law n. 416 /1981. Cric’s President Valdo Spini clearly denounced: “now we need a strong relationship with a precise national reference point. What is needed is a true Journal Project at the Ministry, set up with associations like ours”. (Session at the Cabinet’s VII Commission for Culture on the 18th of July 2011)
  16. 16. A New Journal ProjectA New Journal Project The “Journal Project” should aim at the solution of structural problems in the sector: circulation in bookshops and libraries, bridging the digital divide, new funding and communication models. My personal idea is a distinction in financial aids, in line with the new Monti Government settings. The attitude could be: “I give you a contribution for something that you are going to do, in order to help you reach your objective”. A significant financial support could be given to a small group of journals, whose cultural contribution is considered unique, on the basis of renewed evaluation criteria. All journals should be given the strategic support necessary to renew communication and distribution models, in order to reach new readers and allow self-financing.
  18. 18. Digital Contents: Main PhenomenaDigital Contents: Main Phenomena • On-line journals – both the ones migrating content from paper to digital form and the ones stemming from Internet – are increasing and have already embraced the participative philosophy of Internet and Web 2.0 (i.e. literary blogs, political journals) • Humanities and Social Sciences (Shs) Journals - both academic and “militant” - (traditionally attached to printed paper) are adapting to changes that crucially affect scientific and functional communication. • The Open Access movement finds widespread consensus in the scientific community, universities and libraries. • Free access Journals need however search engines, devices and channel of circulation, which actually are controlled by global publishing and technology groups. • The growth of Google puts into question the traditional distinction between commercial and non-commercial circuits of digital editions.
  19. 19. Digital Contents: Products and Common GoodsDigital Contents: Products and Common Goods Within this framework: • Both the protection of traditional marketing channels and the safeguard of copyright in the digital realm and on the Internet cannot be narrowed down to a merely defensive strategy. • The matters concerning intellectual property and the identification of new possible models for a sustainable economy are of primary importance in the publishing world and in the field related to all of the contradictory transformations investing the complex sphere of authorship. • There is a variety of models and solutions, also for Open Access publishing, that can be experimented in the author-publisher-reader chain, and that can be traced back to the so called “gold road” and “green road”.
  20. 20. Digital Contents: the Problem of EvaluationDigital Contents: the Problem of Evaluation • There are several elements interconnecting issues of the digitizing and the criteria of evaluation of the quality of publications. • The National Agency for University Evaluation and Research (Anvur) has stressed the need to prompt the best Italian journals to become part of the most important national and international databases, by matching the requirements of Peer review and Impact Factor. • Anvur has provided some relevant comments, adding that: “great effort shall be undergone in order to catalogue journals published in Italy (…), so as to improve their comparability and transparency”. Despite this, Italian Literature Journals Ranking, published in April 2012 by Anvur, has given rise to discussion and controversy. • SHS Journals, in fact, are often characterized by the interdisciplinary nature of knowledge and by no clear distinction among scientific and professional, didactic, documentary texts. The “cultural paradigms” are based on consensus in the public sphere, as a productive and critical relationship between science and society, and on the strong connection with the national language and tradition.
  21. 21. Towards a Net Cooperation?Towards a Net Cooperation? • To sum up, a consideration can be drawn as regards the potential of the Net in order to strengthen the dissemination of published texts along clearly defined editorial guidelines, copyright systems, models of economic sustainability, communicative strategies, with their differences and similarities. • Are scholarly journals and cultural magazines going towards a cooperation amongst nets? • A cooperation aimed at strengthening the infrastructure of knowledge by the different parties – mainly Schools, Universities, Cultural Institutions, Archives and Libraries – seems a cogent issue at present, also to boost the social and economic development. • CRIC and important Publishing Companies associated at CRIC contribute, with their contents, to the Casalini Torrossa Full Text Collection.
  22. 22. A National AgendaA National Agenda Within this perspective, some lines of contact emerge which may lead to a possible alliance of the “academy”, as it moves towards the self-management of its own scientific heritage in Open Access systems, and cultural professionals and enterprises, in keeping with the scopes of the Open Access 2002-2012 Programme. • The French Model (,, Persée) clearly demonstrates that the cooperation between the private and the public sectors encourages the development of a navigation space that may include the whole set of articles in the fields of the Humanities and Social Sciences. • The time has come for our own National Agenda that may give way to a series of reflections and decisions on the future of cultural journals, one in which different stakeholders of the digital offer may discuss and interact.
  23. 23. In your paper you mentioned Open Access practices, butIn your paper you mentioned Open Access practices, but is Cric actively promoting free access to the content ofis Cric actively promoting free access to the content of the journals it represents?)the journals it represents?) “We would do it”. This is something more of a wish. Cric has answered to the Call for Proposal (2009) of CRUI and SIAE in matter of Copyright Culture. Our project has regarded the construction of a prototype portal on the web, testing different models of diffusion of the SHS Journals. The Project was presented by Cric with the partnership of CILEA and CSS (Italian Committee for the Social Sciences) but was not chosen. The use of OJS - Open Journal System – would allow the participants to publish and make avaiable the articles, both for subscription or for free, as a voluntary choice. Aggregation on dedicated networks is the way to achieve effective communication and widespread dissemination of journals contents.
  24. 24. Apart from the technical problems that hamper theApart from the technical problems that hamper the dissemination of cultural journals, do you think there aredissemination of cultural journals, do you think there are other factors that should be taken into account?other factors that should be taken into account? In the twentieth century, cultural journals were privileged places for creative writing, critical analysis, discussion of ideas, production and circulation of knowledge. But the voice of journals, based on the fertile space between the book and the newspaper, gradually has been overshadowed in the media arena and in the publishing market. The journals will regain their role if they are able to preserve the sense of cultural heritage, continue to pose questions to contemporary times and construct points of view for the future.