By Tashina Gunning, Project MUSE Staff
The year 2012 has been exhilarating and eventful for Project MUSE and is one that has ushered in some of the most significant changes to the organization in its 17 year history. Over 65 distinguished scholarly presses, acting collaboratively as the University Press Content Consortium (UPCC), made their books available for purchase on MUSE in a wide variety of collections suitable for libraries of all types and sizes. The introduction of e-books and launch of a new interface in January integrated upward of 15,000 digital books with more than 500 journal titles into a single platform.
Sales of the UPCC Book Collections on Project MUSE have been brisk. To date, more than 500 collections have been sold to customers in 15 countries around the world. Two of the earliest adopters of the UPCC Book Collections were international institutions in Norway and Australia. At present, scholars in Bangladesh, New Zealand, Egypt, France, El Salvador, and Switzerland are among those outside of North America accessing UPCC Books on Project MUSE. Not only are scholars benefitting from the UPCC Book Collections, but participating publishers are as well as their digital revenues grow and exposure to and usage of their e-book content increases. Earlier this summer publishers received their first statements from Project MUSE for book sales.
The University Press of Kentucky was just one of the satisfied recipients to take their excitement to Twitter, tweeting: “We just received our first statement from @ProjectMUSE for UPCC. WOW! Congratulations to all partners!” The University of Pittsburgh Press echoed Kentucky’s sentiments on the social network: “Just rec’d 1st report on book sales from @ProjectMUSE. We’re so happy!
Great start to an important new program. Does your lib subscribe?” Project MUSE is eagerly preparing for 2013, which is shaping up to be another exciting year for the UPCC initiative. So far, an additional 12 publishers have committed to participating in the program next year, with additional presses expected to sign on in the coming months. Confirmed new publishers for 2013 include the African Books Collective, Central European University Press,
University of Illinois Press, the Liberty Fund, Medieval Institute Publications, Les Presses de l’Université du Québec, and the RIT Cary Graphic Arts Press. Currently, of the more than 200 not-for-profit publishers contribute content to Project MUSE; among them, nearly 80 are UPCC publishers. The UPCC Books have proved to be a valuable enhancement to Project MUSE’s growing collection of journals. The books not only enrich existing journal content but also significantly expand the breadth and depth of Project MUSE’s research content in the humanities and social sciences. With the addition of books, MUSE’s holdings have grown exponentially. Presently over 250,000 journal articles seamlessly integrate with nearly 320,000 book chapters on the platform.
As the UPCC initiative enjoys a successful inaugural year, Project MUSE journals continue to thrive. MUSE has welcomed 81 new subscribing institutions in 2012, bringing the total number of journal subscribers to more than 2,600, over 1,500 of which are institutions outside of North America. To date, 22 new journals have been confirmed to join Project MUSE in 2013, with more anticipated to join in the coming months.
Learn more about the UPCC Book Collections on Project MUSE and its participating publishers at http://muse.jhu.edu/about/UPCC.html.