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Cornell Joins TOME Initiative as 15th University Member

The following is a statement from the Association of American Universities, Association of Research Libraries, and the Association of University Presses welcoming Cornell University to the Toward an Open Monograph Ecosystem Initiative, which includes more than 60 university presses and 15 university members.

The Association of American Universities, together with the Association of Research Libraries and the Association of University Presses, welcomes Cornell University to the Toward an Open Monograph Ecosystem initiative. This pilot effort aims to support the digital publication of peer-reviewed scholarly books by participating university presses, allowing the free publication of these works online and broadly improving access to these works by scholars and the public.

Through TOME, Cornell will provide publication grants to a select number of its faculty members each year. These awards include baseline grants of $15,000 that awardees will use to publish their humanities and social science monographs through participating university presses.

More than 60 university presses at 15 universities are currently part of the initiative, including Cornell University Press, which published the first TOME book in 2017, A Colonial Affair: Commerce, Conversion, and Scandal in French India by Danna Agmon. As with all TOME books, A Colonial Affair is free to read and download from numerous online sites including Cornell Open . Seventeen TOME-funded books have been published since the program began in 2017, with another twenty in process.

“I am delighted that Cornell University has joined the distinguished group of institutions supporting TOME,” said Gerald Beasley, Carl A. Kroch University Librarian at Cornell University. “The TOME initiative fits very well into the larger OA strategies of both Library and Press.”

AAU, ARL, and AUPresses support an annual summit of TOME representatives who share model license terms and contracts for open books, campus promotion strategies, and ideas for improving and streamlining communications among authors, institutions, and publishers. For more information about the initiative, see the TOME FAQ. To join the TOME initiative as a participating institution or publisher, contact Jessica Sebeok at [email protected], Peter Potter at [email protected], or Peter Berkery at [email protected].

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Founded in 1900, the Association of American Universities is composed of America’s leading research universities. AAU’s 62 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.

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

AUPresses is an organization of more than 140 international nonprofit scholarly publishers. Since 1937, the Association of University Presses advances 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.