NEH Announces Open Access Grant Program for Fellowship Books
Today, the National Endowment for the Humanities announces a new grant opportunity, the Fellowships Open Book Program (FOBP). This program, offered to university and non-profit presses, will fund the creation of open access editions of humanities monographs whose underlying research was funded by one of the eligible NEH fellowship programs (i.e., Fellowships, Awards for Faculty, JUSFC-NEH Fellowships for Advanced Social Science Research on Japan, and the Public Scholars program).
For nearly 50 years, the prestigious NEH fellowship programs have supported the research behind thousands of important humanities and social science monographs. The new Fellowships Open Book Program will ensure that these books have the widest possible audience by making them available as free-to-download ebooks, under a Creative Commons license.
The FOBP follows the NEH/Mellon Humanities Open Book Program, which was a partnership between the NEH and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation that aimed to digitize out-of-print humanities books and release them as free ebooks. This program has shown that humanities monographs may be downloaded thousands of times once made openly available, indicating great interest in excellent humanities research. In many cases, these downloads also led to additional purchases of print copies.
This new Fellowships Open Book Program has several enhanced features, many of which were suggested by the field:
- The program uses a simple, streamlined application process, making it easy for university presses and other eligible publishers to apply.
- Under the terms of the award, publishers receive $5500 to offset costs of releasing an open access edition.
- Of the total award, $500 is set aside as a royalty payment to the author(s).
- The program will have three deadlines per year, so publishers can apply and hear back quickly.
- Publishers can apply for the grant for forthcoming titles or titles that have been published within the past three years.
The FOBP is a partnership between the NEH’s Office of Digital Humanities and the Division of Research Programs. Details about the grant program can be found on the NEH website at https://www.neh.gov/grants/odh/FOBP.