• Publication cultures in academia are as diverse as their underlying research cultures. In today’s often normative discourse on Open Access, there is a danger that this diversity will be neglected or even lost in the medium term in favor of techno-solutionist implementations. In the following, I will therefore take a closer look at the approach of scholar-led publishing and show what connections exist between scholar-led initiatives and the ‘classic’ Open Access movement.

    I begin with a brief analysis of the mainstream discourse around OA and then approach the issue from a diachronic perspective to see how scholar-led initiatives from the humanities and social sciences – and with them from the cultural, media, and communication sciences – have set important impulses for opening up publication cultures early on and in their own way, and in parallel to – or even preceding – the widely received developments from the medical and natural sciences in the 1990s. In the second part of this three-part blog series, I present a spectrum of scholar-led journal initiatives, while the third part focuses on scholar-led book publishers and scholar-led networks in a broader sense.