The Vega project was born out of the academic mission to bridge print and digital scholarly publishing realms. Vega aims to reach scholars across different disciplines and knowledge domains to engage in further building the media-rich possibilities in scholarly, open-access publishing. Resistance against commercial academic publishers is growing due to these corporations’ non-transparent “open-access” author fees and their massively bundled subscription plans, which are negotiated privately on an institution-by-institution basis. These costly negotiations have resulted in major universities calling for renewed interest in open-access publishing, a move that many European universities have already made, some mandated by their governments.
Although there are other open-access systems for academic publishing, some of them well known and used, they lack the ability to integrate basic multimedia content into their publications. They also all look the same so that customization of the standard template is practically impossible for the academic editor who isn’t also a programming expert. Finally, their editorial and publishing workflows–that is, the processes of peer-review, production, and publication–are rather strict and limited to publishing deliverables that mimic print-like journals and books. Vega seeks to dismantle these obstacles for academic publishing by allowing robust multimedia content to be incorporated into the editorial and publishing workflows and for customization of publishing venues’ interface design. These are just some of the major features Vega offers to academic publishers, editors, and authors. Follow our progress on this tumblr/blog and by signing up for our email list at http://vegapublish.com.