‘Cannot predict now’: The role of repositories in the future of the journal

Sarah L. Shreeves

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

6 Scopus citations


Repositories, whether institutional or subject-based (disciplinary), typically provide open access to preprints and final manuscripts of accepted journal articles, among other material. While repositories generally do not perform all of the traditional activities of formal publication such as peer review, editing, and formatting and, except for a few exceptions, have struggled to attract researchers to deposit articles, it is fair to ask what impact such repositories have or might evolve to have on the academic journal. A handful of disciplinary repositories have become loci for scholarly dissemination and interaction. Academic libraries and other institutional-based hosts of repositories are slowly gaining experience in building and maintaining the infrastructure necessary for participation in the scholarly publishing sphere. While a few libraries have begun to use this experience to offer support for publishing, others have developed programs to raise awareness of ‘author rights’ and to encourage faculty advocacy within the scholarly publishing arena. This chapter provides an overview of the repository landscape and outlines some of the ways in which repositories may have an impact on the future of the academic journal. The title refers to one of the answers that Mattel’s Magic Eight Ball gives when asked to answer a yes or no question. With two rather momentous events in early 2008—the mandate that research funded through the National Institute of Health be deposited into PubMed Central and the unexpected mandate from Harvard’s Faculty of Arts and Sciences that published articles be deposited into the institutional repository—it is clear that this rapidly changing landscape is subject to upheavals, reversals, and sudden surges forward.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe future of the journal in the digital age
EditorsBill Cope, Angus Phillips
Place of PublicationOxford, UK
PublisherChandos Press
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • institutional repository
  • disciplinary repository
  • scholarly communication
  • academic journals

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Library and Information Sciences


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