Welcome to the University of Lethbridge Journal Incubator

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The Lethbridge Journal Incubator is a new initiative of the University of Lethbridge Library and the University of Lethbridge School of Graduate Studies.

The goal of this incubator is to address the issue of the sustainability of scholarly communication in an open access, digital age by aligning it with the educational and research missions of the University. In this way, the production of scholarly communication, which is often understood as a cost centre that draws resources away from a host university's core missions, is transformed into a sustainable, high-impact resource.

You can read more about the Incubator's conceptual background and developments plans here. The Incubator is in the process of developing partnerships with other public and private publishing concerns and organisations: these partnerships will involve exchange of best practice, cooperative development, advice and support, and, potentially, opportunities for commercial internships for students in the programme. A partial list of organisations currently discussing partnerships with the Incubator can be found here.

For Students

The Incubator supports students at the University of Lethbridge by providing training and practical experience with contemporary digital technology and project management. These are easily generalisable skills that are highly sought after by public and private employers.

Graduate students are trained to manage the back office and editorial operations of one or two journals in their broad area of expertise (e.g. Literature, History, Sociology). This work involves working closely with journal's editors, authors, and referees managing workflow, correspondence, the preparation of copy and proofs, and final publication. Graduate students are also trained in technical aspects of digital journal production: working with cloud-based file and content management systems, eXtensible Markup Language (XML) encoding and processing, and project management.

Graduate Students who are accepted into the programme will be awarded a special Research Assistantship worth $7,000 per annum which they will be able to hold in addition to the standard $7,000 Graduate Teaching Assistantship offered to all incoming students. These Assistantships are awarded on a competitive basis and are currently available to a maximum of two students.

Undergraduate students learn specific practical applications and technological skills. Students who are already have some knowledge of the underlying technology can work on design and development issues, working on tools and software, and improving workflow. Students without such knowledge will be given training and work on the management of individual articles and titles.

Undergraduate participation in the programme is through the Co-op programme. Students will receive course credit for their work on the project. In addition, students will receive some combination of hourly way and semester-end honorarium in compensation for their participation.

You do not need to be already-proficient with technology in order to participate in this programme. Training in the required skills will be given to students as required. Through this work, students will acquire training, managerial experience, and networking opportunities that are both of immediate use to them in their day to day studies and highly sought-after by public and private sector employers.

For Researchers

The Incubator supports researchers at the University by providing back-office support, advice, and training for scholarly publishing projects. The primary focus of the Incubator at the moment is scholarly journals in the Humanities and Social Sciences. Using its trained student assistants, the Incubator can support all aspects of the scholarly publishing process: referee and author management, production, copy-editing, preparation of proofs and final publication. The Incubator can also advise scholars considering setting up new publishing projects about workflow, technology, organisation, and funding.

This assistance can be offered on an in-kind basis for projects that do not have external funding or a cost-recovery basis for those projects that have external funding (partial or full depending on the available funding). The Incubator is particularly interested in helping new or unfunded projects maximise their chances of receiving funding in future competitions.

Current Opportunities

For Spring 2012, the Incubator has openings for one graduate student assistant and a maximum of three undergraduate co-op students. The Incubator is also interested in discussing participation with additional scholarly publishing projects on campus.

For more information about participation in the Incubator as a student or publishing project, please contact the director, Daniel Paul O'Donnell (daniel.odonnell@uleth.ca)