Research Libraries UK (RLUK) has joined the Association of European University Presses (AEUP) as a new patron member.

Publishing in the Humanities and Arts to a large extent is taking place in university presses, especially in those disciplines communicating their research via the ‘long argument’ – the monograph as the predominant publishing format – and in national languages. Among university presses, there are major players such as Oxford or Cambridge University Press. The majority of presses serving those disciplines, however, is rather small and specialised. Hence close collaboration within associations like AEUP will allow RLUK to pool resources (joint catalogue, joint Book fair presence), lobby and network with vendors and other stakeholders and stay in touch with current trends and developments.

John MacColl, Chair of RLUK, stated: ‘RLUK supports all forms of scholarly publishing, and we believe that a flexible approach is necessary. The monograph occupies a proud and distinctive place in the research library, with which it is strongly identified, especially for research in the humanities. As we move increasingly to online publication, and towards new business models for access to monographs on the web, it is pleasing to find that this enduring expression of scholarship is alive and well. We are very pleased therefore to work within the AEUP on the future form of and revitalised prospects for the academic book’.

David Prosser, Executive Director of RLUK, said: ‘There is presently a great deal of dynamism in monograph publishing, both as format and as an organising principle of doing research. Despite the challenges for the monograph and its publishers, several recent developments show that there is a healthy future ahead, if forces are joined and potentials explored. RLUK is very happy to support the AEUP as a player paving the way towards that future, for the benefit of researchers, students and the wider public. By joining AEUP, RLUK also signals encouragement of the library as publisher. There has been a call for experimentation in this area, and RLUK is delighted to take an active role through and with AEUP to promote that openness of approach towards monograph publishing in and for the sector’.

AEUP’s president Isabella Meinecke added: ‘In order to provide researchers from the Humanities and Arts state-of-the-art and affordable publishing opportunities, several universities have started publishing programs via their libraries, almost all of these library-based publishing units with a strong focus on Open Access. Thus having a powerful library consortium on board will help AEUP, on one hand to meet the special needs of the library-based publishers not just in the UK, and on the other hand to bring AEUP members’ publishing programs into the awareness of research libraries in the UK. Having RLUK as a patron member in our association means that we will be working closer with our stakeholders, with libraries acquiring content on behalf of their patrons’.


About AEUP: AEUP is an association for European university presses to help build stronger relationships among them, to co-operate and share knowledge, reach out to common goals and jointly address current publishing trends and developments. It was founded in 2010. By now the group consists of 24 presses and two patron members, coming from 12 different countries within the European Union. 

About RLUK: Research Libraries UK is a consortium of 34 of the largest research organisations in the UK and Ireland, including the three UK national libraries. Founded more than 30 years ago, RLUK has directly and indirectly sponsored some of the major free online UK resources in support of research. RLUK’s mission is to work with its members and partners, nationally and internationally, to shape and to realise the vision of the modern research library.

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