Buying Book Chapters Like Music Tracks, And What’s Wrong With Traditional Peer Review Anyway? A Conversation With Duke University Press, Part Two.

Adeline Koh | The Chronicle of Higher Education | April 17, 2013

This is part 2 of the ninth interview in a series by Adeline Koh entitled Digital Challenges to Academic Publishing. Each article in this series features an interview with an academic publisher, press or journal editor on how their organization is changing in response to the digital world. The series has featured interviews with Anvil Academic, Stanford Highwire Press, NYU Press, MIT Press and the Penn State University Press.

In this second part of an interview with Ken Wissoker (@kwissoker) (editorial director of Duke University Press), I speak with Ken about some of the digital innovations Duke University Press is experimenting with for its new publications, and on Ken’s appreciation for traditional forms of peer review. Read part one of the interview here.

AK: What I’m hearing from you is that length is very malleable when you publish something digitally. You can have the really long project or you can have the really short project, depending on your needs.

KW: The right length for digital projects is malleable and at the same time as yet unknown. If you believe in media specificity — that a different kind of film works if you’re expecting people to watch in an iMAX theater versus if you’re expecting them to watch on a handheld — then even the same plot, the same effects and the same soundtrack would have to work differently.