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[InetBib] Artikel im Guardian: "Is the staggeringly profitable business of scientific publishing bad for science?"

Liebe Liste

Ein sehr langer (für eine Zeitung), aber auch sehr lesenswerter Artikel im 
Guardian stellt die Frage: "Is the staggeringly profitable business of 
scientific publishing bad for science?".

Wie ich finde bietet er eine sehr anschauliche Zusammenfassung des derzeitigen 
Zustands des wissenschaftlichen Publikationswesens im Vereinigten Königreich. 
Und er zeigt vor allem, welche Entwicklung historisch, d.h. seit dem Zweiten 
Weltkrieg, zu diesem Zustand geführt hat:

"Even scientists who are fighting for reform are often not aware of the roots 
of the system: how, in the boom years after the second world war, entrepreneurs 
built fortunes by taking publishing out of the hands of scientists and 
expanding the business on a previously unimaginable scale. And no one was more 
transformative and ingenious than Robert Maxwell, who turned scientific 
journals into a spectacular money-making machine that bankrolled his rise in 
British society."

Mir war bis dato völlig unbekannt, welche Rolle Robert Maxwell dabei gespielt 
hat, und dass am Anfang die Zusammenarbeit von Butterworths mit Springer stand:

"Top British scientists ... were concerned that while British science was 
world-class, its publishing arm was dismal. Science publishers were mainly 
known for being inefficient and constantly broke. Journals, which often 
appeared on cheap, thin paper, were produced almost as an afterthought by 
scientific societies. The British Chemical Society had a months-long backlog of 
articles for publication, and relied on cash handouts from the Royal Society to 
run its printing operations. The government’s solution was to pair the 
venerable British publishing house Butterworths (now owned by Elsevier) with 
the renowned German publisher Springer, to draw on the latter’s expertise."

Daraus enstand dann Robert Maxwells Pergamon Press:

"By 1959, Pergamon was publishing 40 journals; six years later it would publish 
150. This put Maxwell well ahead of the competition. (In 1959, Pergamon’s 
rival, Elsevier, had just 10 English-language journals, and it would take the 
company another decade to reach 50.)"

1991 verkaufte Maxwell Pergamon Press dann an Elsevier.

Viele Grüße aus London
Florian Ruhland

Listeninformationen unter http://www.inetbib.de.