Sixty scholarly books in the humanities and social sciences have been made freely available to researchers, students, and the general public under the TOME initiative.
The Association of American Universities, Association of Research Libraries, and Association of University Presses launched TOME (Toward an Open Monograph Ecosystem) in 2018 as a five-year pilot project to change the landscape of scholarly book publishing. Under the initiative, 21 colleges and universities have committed to providing grants of $15,000 per monograph, and 66 university presses have agreed to produce digital open-access editions of the books, license them under Creative Commons licenses, and deposit the files in open repositories.
TOME advances the goal of migrating humanities and social science scholarship to the open web, where it can be fully integrated into the larger web-based network of scientific research. The 60 books published under the initiative to date cover a wide range of topics in many disciplines, including architecture, art, history, rhetoric, literary criticism, philosophy, political science, anthropology, ethnic studies, gender studies, media studies, and sociology.
Errol A. Henderson, associate professor of political science at Pennsylvania State University, has published two open-access books under the TOME umbrella. “Scriptures, Shrines, Scapegoats, and World Politics: Religious Sources of Conflict and Cooperation in the Modern Era,” offers a comprehensive evaluation of the role of religion in international relations, broadening the scope of investigation to such topics as the relationship between religion and cooperation, religion and conflict, and the relationship between religion and the quality of life. Co-authored by Ze’ev Maoz, the monograph was published in March 2020 by the University of Michigan Press, with funding from Penn State and the University of California, Davis.
Henderson’s first open-access TOME publication, “The Revolution Will Not Be Theorized: Cultural Revolution in the Black Power Era,” explains the theoretical contribution of Black Power Movement activists and organizations in the 1960s through 1970s and places it within a broader social theory of Black revolution in the United States dating back to 19th-century Black intellectuals. This volume was published in August 2019 by SUNY Press.
Henderson expressed appreciation for the TOME initiative, noting that making books available online for free “alleviates costs and helps make higher education more accessible.”
TOME is on the web at https://www.openmonographs.org/.
About the Association of American Universities
Founded in 1900, the Association of American Universities is composed of America’s leading research universities. AAU’s 65 research universities transform lives through education, research, and innovation. Our member universities earn the majority of competitively awarded federal funding for research that improves public health, seeks to address national challenges, and contributes significantly to our economic strength, while educating and training tomorrow’s visionary leaders and innovators. AAU member universities collectively help shape policy for higher education, science, and innovation; promote best practices in undergraduate and graduate education; and strengthen the contributions of leading research universities to American society. Follow AAU on Twitter, on Facebook, and on LinkedIn.
About the Association of Research Libraries
The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) is a nonprofit organization of 124 research libraries in Canada and the US whose mission is to advance research, learning, and scholarly communication. The Association fosters the open exchange of ideas and expertise, promotes equity and diversity, and pursues advocacy and public policy efforts that reflect the values of the library, scholarly, and higher education communities. ARL forges partnerships and catalyzes the collective efforts of research libraries to enable knowledge creation and to achieve enduring and barrier-free access to information. ARL is on the web at ARL.org.
About the Association of University Presses
The Association of University Presses (AUPresses) is an organization of more than 150 international nonprofit scholarly publishers. Since 1937, the Association of University Presses has advanced the essential role of a global community of publishers whose mission is to ensure academic excellence and cultivate knowledge. The Association holds integrity, diversity, stewardship, and intellectual freedom as core values. AUPresses members are active across many scholarly disciplines, including the humanities, arts, and sciences, publish significant regional and literary work, and are innovators in the world of digital publishing.