PKP Newsletter – April 2013

April 26th, 2013 by  | Comments Off on PKP Newsletter – April 2013

As Spring is finally starting to push its way through, the Public Knowledge Project team presents the second issue of the PKP newsletter, with an overview of developments during the first quarter of 2013. In this issue you will find news about the release of OMP 1.0; OJS 2.4.2; the PKP Scholarly Publishing 2013 conference; our sustainability program; and PKP research, presentations, and workshops.

During the last quarter, PKP released the first full version of OMP, as well as an update of OJS 2.4. Planning also continues for the fourth International Scholarly Publishing Conference, in Mexico City, August 2013. The first confirmed speakers have been announced, and by popular request the deadline for proposal submissions has been extended until May 6.

First of all, however, we would like to share with you an important change in the PKP team:

A Farewell (although not quite) to Kevin Stranack

Many of you probably know Kevin Stranack very well, although you may have never met him in person.  Kevin has been one of the friendly voices (via email or Skype) of PKP for almost eight years. He was also primarily responsible for overseeing the development and maintenance of the main PKP website, and was the author of some of PKP’s “best selling” scholarly publishing guides such as “Getting Found, Staying Found, Increasing Impact: Enhancing Readership and Preserving Content for OJS Journals.”

Kevin recently completed a Master in Education degree for which he concentrated on the development of online learning environments. This newly acquired expertise enabled Kevin to secure some major project work developing online library courses for the public library system in British Columbia.   This is an ideal opportunity for Kevin but it also means a significant reduction in the amount of time that he will be able to dedicate to PKP in the foreseeable future. Kevin will still be undertaking some high level consulting and project management work for PKP but will no longer have a visible presence at the daily operational level.

All of us at PKP will miss the regular contact with Kevin.  His affable and knowledgeable style was a major influence on the work culture at PKP.  And fortunately for us, he was the ideal role model for the other PKP team members – James MacGregor, Karen Meijer-Kline, Chris MacDonald – who are ably filling the gap created by Kevin’s departure. We wish Kevin all the best in his new endeavours and we are relieved that he hasn’t left PKP completely.  Don’t be surprised if you recognize a familiar voice on a Skype call or see something written by Kevin in his inimitable style.

Brian Owen, Managing Director

For many of our partners, Kevin has been PKP’s ambassador. I can’t count the number of people I’ve met who expressed genuine shock at how pleasant he’s been to work with. For anyone not expecting to find a human on the other end of the pipe, Kevin has been real surprise. We’ll have to work extremely hard to match the charm and resourcefulness he’s brought to PKP. We have our community to thank for our ongoing success and we have Kevin to thank for the strength and development of our community.

Alec Smecher, PKP Lead Developer

Kevin provided my first introduction to PKP when, way back in the mid 2000’s, he came to the University of New Brunswick to provide an OJS workshop. Little did I know then that I would find myself on the other side of the country, working directly with Kevin and the rest of the PKP team. Kevin has been my mentor and collaborator on innumerable projects for the past six years: running workshops, writing scholarly publications and PKP documentation, creating a services management and support framework, providing different levels of partner and community management — you name it, we’ve collaborated on it. His level of engagement with and support of the scholarly community has always inspired me — and will continue to do so, I am sure. Good luck with the future, Kevin, it has been a sincere pleasure to work alongside you.

James MacGregor, PKP Community Services and Support Coordinator

Software Updates

OMP 1.0 Release

On March 26, 2013, PKP released  the Open Monograph Press (OMP) 1.0.  The formal production  release improves upon the public beta released in September 2012 in a number of ways. It includes a number of stability bug fixes and enhancements, particularly to the production and distribution workflows, and creation of ONIX for Books metadata support. It also includes multilingual support for French, Greek, Brazilian Portuguese, and Spanish. Thank you to all our community translation contributors!

As with all PKP software, OMP can be downloaded for free and installed on a local webserver or it can be hosted by PKP Publishing Services. More information about OMP, including links to documentation, can be found on the PKP website at

OMP Installations

In addition to the formal early adopters, since the release we have seen 597 downloads of OMP from 158 unique IP addresses. The known OMP  installations  span 22 countries, and some have already undergone quite some customization.

Open SUNY Textbooks

The Open SUNY Textbook program plans to publish 15 high-quality open textbooks during the Fall of 2013, using OMP! Their aim is to encourage SUNY faculty to create textbooks free online for everyone, through the support of a SUNY Innovative Instruction Technology Grant and participating SUNY libraries. We are very pleased that SUNY has chosen OMP as their publishing platform, seeing it as a fantastic reflection of the hard work, skill, and determination of the OMP team.

OJS 2.4.2

On March 6, 2013  the PKP Development Team announced the release of OJS 2.4.2

This release builds on the 2.4.1 release and further stabilizes the 2.4.x line for production use. In addition, it adds many of the translations that were not completed in prior 2.4.x releases, including French, Spanish, Catalan, Turkish, Danish, and Greek.

Additional functionality was contributed by the Freie Universität Berlin, particularly with their continued support for Lucene integration.

With this release we recommend that the 2.4.x line become the focus for production use by the OJS community. (We will continue to maintain 2.3.x with security updates as required.)

Our special thanks go out to our many translators and the Freie Universität Berlin for their ongoing invaluable contributions.

To download OJS 2.4.2, and for information on upgrading from previous releases, please see the OJS download page.

Fourth International PKP Scholarly Publishing Conference

Confirmed speakers for the Fourth PKP International Scholarly Publishing Conference, which will be held from August 19-21, 2013 in Mexico City, Mexico, so far include:

  • Lars Björnshauge (DOAJ)
  • Heather Joseph (SPARC)
  • Emir Suaiden (IBICT, Brazil)
  • Imanol Ordorika (UNAM, Mexico)
  • Dominique Babini (CLACSO, Latin America)
  • Hebe Vessuri (IVIC, Venezuela)
  • Jean-Claude Guédon (University of Montreal, Canada)
  • Elea Gimenez (CSIC, Spain)
  • David Solomon (Michigan State University, USA)
  • Ana María Cetto (UNAM and Latindex, Mexico)
  • John Willinsky (Stanford University and PKP, USA and Canada)

By popular demand, we have now extended the deadline for proposals to May 6th!

The deadline for submission of proposals to the PKP Scholarly Publishing 2013 Conference, taking place August 19-21 in Mexico City, Mexico, has been extended to May 6. Please consider submitting a presentation proposal, attending the event, and sharing this message with any colleagues who you think might be interested in participating.

The conference will provide a unique opportunity for exchange on innovative work in scholarly publishing, with a focus on the contributions of open source technologies. We look forward to hosting editors, publishers, librarians, researchers, developers, content aggregators, and PKP’s growing user community from around the world. Participation in the conference will be an exciting chance to share your knowledge and experience with the larger scholarly publishing community.

Previous International PKP Scholarly Publishing conferences have brought together a remarkable array of presentations and participants from around the world. We anticipate an equally valuable experience in 2013.

We especially encourage proposals that address one or more of the following topics:

  • Reports on institutional, national, and regional open access policies, initiatives, and projects;
  • Sustainability and alternative models for open access publishing;
  • Quality, impact, and reach of Open Access publications;
  • Open Access and higher education;
  • Interoperability and  information systems;
  • New reading and publishing technologies.

The conference will also include technical workshops, as well as the PKP AGM. A preliminary program is available on the conference website:

Proposals should be submitted using the submission guidelines and form available on our website; all proposals will be subject to peer-review and you will be informed of a decision by May 15th.

We would also like to note that there is an “early bird” registration discount available until May 31, 2013.

More information, including the Call for Papers and Registration form, is available on the conference website:


PKP Education Project

The PKP Education Project launched on April 1st, 2013.  Work is being done on developing a MOOC like course structures: for example on Editorial Skills (in general) and OJS for Editors, and more. The PKP School platform on WordPress currently has a course teaching the use of OJS for journal managers. We intend to provide training and support that can be accessed when needed, in both ‘just in time’, as well as ‘just in case’ scenarios.


The MediaX project continues apace, with another demo having taken place at the Beyond the PDF conference in Amsterdam in March, 2013 (see below), and the expected release of an OJS plugin in May, 2013. We have just begun the process of adding support for non-English articles to our parser — leveraging the OJS translation community — and we have been in close contact with collaborators at Solvitor (developers of Annotum) and Heidelberg University regarding production-quality WYSIWYG XML editing.


Alex Garnett, James MacGregor, and Jen Whitney are working on putting together an OJS plugin that will facilitate the deposit of article supplementary files into a Dataverse archive. They have finished scoping work with their pilot participants and have officially begun development; we are planning on having a usable OJS plugin available by the 2013 PKP Conference in August.

Selected Publications

Alperin, J. P. (2013), Ask not what altmetrics can do for you, but what altmetrics can do for developing countries. To be found at:

Together with FLACSO-Brasil and others, PKP successfully ran a Small Grants contest for the project “Calidad en la Comunicación Científica de Acceso Abierto en América Latina”. Results were recently announced and can be found here.

Presentations & Workshops

In the previous newsletter we announced the presentation of “Left to Their Own Devices: Automating XML Parsing and Rendering for Scholarly Publishing” , by Juan Pablo Alperin & Alex Garnett, at the Media X Conference. This included a demo and exhibit of PKP XML engine. For those of you who were not able to attend, here you can find a Youtube video of the presentation.

In March, Alex Garnett and Juan Pable Alperin also attended the Beyond the PDF 2 Conference in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, with a presentation of: “PKP Presents: Finally, A Completely Automated XML Publication Pipeline”. This was a great conference, and you can find a good summary of the event here.

Upcoming Presentations & Workshops

PKP Team members James Macgregor and Karen Meijer-Kline will be facilitating a pre-conference workshop at the 17th International Conference on Electronic Publishing,  June 13-14, 2013, at the Blekinge Institute of Technology, Karlskrona, Sweden:

The future of e-publishing: an introduction to Open Journal Systems & Open Monograph Press

Quick updates/Things to watch for…

PKP Website Development

Work continues behind the scenes on a revitalized PKP web site, with an enhanced support forum, improved wiki, and more streamlined documentation. We expect to be able to present the new website in line with the upcoming PKP Conference in Mexico.  The new design is very promising and we are sure you will love both the new look and the improved usability!

OJS Recommended by Google Scholar

PKP was pleased to see that Google Scholar recommends OJS to Journal Publishers on their Inclusion Guidelines for Webmasters page:

It is the authoritative confirmation that OJS interoperates very well with Google Scholar and ensures that OJS journal content is easily and correctly harvested for inclusion in their system.

Sustainability Program

During the past few months, our Advisory, Technical, and Members Committees made up of our partners, sponsors, and PKP team members have met to discuss a variety of items, with subjects ranging from technical to governance. Planning is also underway for the next PKP AGM, taking place during the PKP conference in August. This will be an ideal forum to discuss any matters relating to PKP and our continued development, and we hope to see many of our sponsors and partners in Mexico City! 

Tech Sessions

Since the AGM in September 2012, the  PKP technical committee has been arranging regular sessions to exchange experiences between our development partners’ technical resources, including training and resource development from PKP. They held two tech sessions recently: one on institutional hosting, and another on AJAX integration for OMP and future PKP releases.

Sponsor and Partnerships

To find out more, you can visit the page of existing sponsors, review our Sustainability Prospectus, and read further details on the sponsorship program. We want to thank all of our partners and sponsors; none of the myriad things mentioned in this newsletter would be possible without your continued commitment and support! Thank you!

If you are interested in becoming a part of the PKP community, let us know and we can give you more information!

You can send comments, questions, or suggestions about this newsletter to Karen Meijer-Kline, at

Comments are closed.