Coko and Open Textbook Network plan IMLS grant-related kick off in December

Coko and the Open Textbook Network will come together at the University of Minnesota on December 11 for an official kick-off of the IMLS-funded multi-year project to create an open textbook platform environment to support authors.

An advisory group comprised of OTN community members will share their requirements and feedback to inform the collaborative design and development of this open source, modular tool.

Hosting the event will be Open Text Book Network’s Dave Ernst and Karen Lauritsen, and Coko’s Adam Hyde. Participants include:

Dan Allosso, Assistant Professor, History, Bemidji State University

Karen Bjork, Head of Digital Initiatives, Portland State University

Matt DeCarlo, Assistant Professor, Radford University School of Social Work

Josie Gray, Coordinator of Collection Quality, BCcampus Open Education

Mark Konecny, Scholarly Communications and Digital Publishing Strategist, University of Cincinnati

Emma Molls, Publishing Services Librarian, University of Minnesota Libraries

Carla Myers, Assistant Librarian & Coordinator of Scholarly Communications, Miami University Libraries

Jonathan Portiz, Associate Professor in the Department of Mathematics and Physics, Colorado State University, Pueblo

The advisory group will explore the following questions: How would a tool for designing an open textbook work? How would it function in order to help faculty authors design a structured, consistent book? What would the design environment look like? Adam Hyde will facilitate these topics as well as a collaborative design process using his own Cabbage Tree Method.

Following the event, Coko’s development team will work to deliver on the requirements. From there, the advisory group will reconvene to test the build, provide feedback, and answer any open questions. The group plans to meet roughly once per year while work is ongoing.

“We’re excited to get started with our advisory group, and to collaborate closely with our partners at Coko, which also values community driven processes,” said Karen Lauritsen. “The Open Textbook Network is committed to supporting multiple pathways to writing and publishing open textbooks for a broad community of users and institutions, and we’re working to make this tool an important contribution to that ecosystem.”

“I’ve been developing books systems for over a decade, and I’ve never been more excited about it than now,” said Adam Hyde. “David and Karen have assembled a network of passionate advocates for open textbooks, and together, this expert team will design the interoperable future of open textbook authoring tools. I’m delighted to participate and cannot wait to get started.”

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