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Our current scholarly publishing and communication ecosystem is in crisis.

University of Maryland researchers are on the front lines of developing innovative solutions to urgent problems that threaten the well-being and health of the planet and people across the globe. Yet, trends in international publishing make it increasingly difficult to provide equitable access to the publicly funded research that can help our communities thrive and make our lives better.


Our Charge


The Publishing, Access, and Contract Terms (UMD PACT) working group, a subgroup of the University Library Council (ULC), is sponsored jointly by the ULC, the Office of the Provost, Faculty Affairs, and the Division of Research. We are:

  • Reviewing current and changing University of Maryland’s scholarly publishing practices, licensing terms, and contracts.
  • Consulting with faculty and administrators via focus group interviews, surveys, and other means to gather input and feedback about scholarly communication issues, ideas, and challenges.
  • Considering how the Senate, Academic Affairs, Faculty Affairs, and the Libraries can lead and collaborate with others, including the University System of Maryland (USM), the Big Ten Academic Alliance (BTAA), and other consortia, to improve equitable access to the University of Maryland's research and scholarship.
  • Recommending a new framework for licensing of scholarly content and the means by which more equitable access to the University of Maryland’s scholarly publishing and data can be achieved

Initiative Timeline

The initiative will have three phases:

  • Phase 1 (April 2020 - Fall 2020) - Review and consultation
  • Phase 2 (Winter 2021) - Library members of the group will compile the data and information gathered during Phase 1 and prepare for Phase 3
  • Phase 3 (Spring 2021 - December 2021) - Discuss issues and devise recommendations; draft report and distribute it for comments
  • Deliver final report to ULC and other sponsors by February 2022

Photography credit for all images: John T. Consoli/University of Maryland