SocArXiv kicks off fundraising drive with new support

SocArXiv, open archive of the social sciences, has launched an initial round of fundraising to support outreach, development, and administration. To kick off this drive, we are delighted to announce that the libraries at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of California, Los Angeles have each contributed $10,000 to our outreach efforts this year. The leaders of these forward-thinking organizations are stepping forward to support open scholarship in the social sciences.

SocArXiv is a partner of the nonprofit Center for Open Science (COS) and is housed at the University of Maryland, under the administrative direction of sociology professor Philip Cohen, who leads a steering committee of sociologists and academic librarians.

The archive launched in beta version on November 30. SocArXiv provides a free, noncommercial service for rapid sharing of academic papers; it is built on the Open Science Framework, a platform for researchers to upload data and code as well as research results. SocArXiv is a not-for-profit alternative to existing commercial platforms, so researchers can be assured that they are sharing their research in an environment where access, not profit, will remain at the heart of the mission.

Since development was first announced in July, researchers have deposited more than 800 papers and continue to participate at an increasing rate. We anticipate rapid growth in that number in the coming year as we establish a reputation as the fully open repository for sociology and social science research.

With COS developing the technology, SocArXiv is focusing on planning, community mobilization, outreach, and governance of the archive. To that end, the Open Society Foundations and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation have each granted the initiative at the University of Maryland $50,000 for the coming year. We now seek support from institutional leaders who anticipate collaboration and participation by their constituents, and who recognize the collective benefit of this public goods infrastructure project.

We are encouraging institutional supporters to participate at one of three levels:

$1,000: Supporter. Supporters receive promotional materials for dissemination to their constituents, and public recognition of their contributions to the future of open scholarship.

$5,000: Sponsor. In addition to supporter recognition, Sponsors have the opportunity to host a webinar or workshop for their constituents with a SocArXiv representative.

$10,000: Partner. Beyond the workshop/webinar, institutions at the Partner level of support have the opportunity to be represented on the SocArXiv Advisory Board, currently in formation, which we anticipate will have two online meetings per year, to evaluate progress and challenges, and to help set direction for governance and development.

Please contact us to discuss how we can work together.