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Cambridge launches open research platform

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Cambridge University Press (CUP) has officially launched Cambridge Open Engage, an early and open content and collaboration platform, which is now open to direct submissions from researchers.

Developed in-house and in consultation with researchers, the platform builds on the technology behind Cambridge Core, the online home for CUP's academic books and journals, to publish early and open research outputs.

These include preprints, presentations, working papers, conference posters and grey literature. All content is open and free to the reader, and free for the author to upload. 

Research across all disciplines is welcome, excluding content with implications for clinical practice. Authors can easily share their research in advance of peer review and publication, share and develop it with peers and build an audience ahead of formal publication. Content is moderated before it is posted, to ensure that it is valid scholarly work.

The platform benefits researchers by offering discovery of early and non-traditional open research across disciplines, and by extending the cooperative benefits of conferences by offering a home in the scholarly record for conference content.

CUP is also offering open research services via Cambridge Open Engage to organisations such as learned societies, research centres, institutions and funders. These partners will be able to access a range of services, including branded content, hosting for their communities, insights into trends and growth areas, and analytics across early and open research outputs within their organisation.

The first organisation to partner with the platform was the American Political Science Association, which launched its APSA Preprints service on Cambridge Open Engage in August.

Mandy Hill, managing director of academic publishing, said: ‘Cambridge Open Engage is a collaborative platform and it was hugely important to us that we developed it in collaboration with the researchers who would be using it. Doing it that way allowed us to really understand which features and functionality are most important to researchers when reading and submitting early research.

‘We will continue to develop the platform over time in collaboration with our panel of over 200 academic volunteers. The service will go beyond content dissemination to provide features that support researcher collaboration and better connect different parts of the research lifecycle.

‘Now more than ever, with academia experiencing significant disruption due to the Covid-19 pandemic and many traditional networking forums postponed or cancelled, it is increasingly important to provide new ways to responsibly share and discuss early stage research.’

She added: ‘The launch of direct submission to the platform is another important step in helping to shape a sustainable transition to a more open future for scholarly publishing. Supporting rapid dissemination and connections among researchers is key to that and to unlocking the potential of high-quality research.’

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