Scholarly Communication & Digital Initiatives

Committee Members

  • Melissa Chim, General Theological Seminary
  • Melody Diehl Detar, Duquesne University
  • Ann McShane, Emory University, Chandler School of Theology
  • Greg Murray, Princeton Theological Seminary
  • Brad Ost, Woodruff Library at Atlanta University Center
  • Erica Pye, Abilene Christian University
  • Christine Fruin, Staff Liaison
  • Christy Karpinski, Staff Liaison

Year in Review

It was the year of grants for this newly expanded Scholarly Communication & Digital Initiatives Committee. The expansion allowed for greater reach into digital initiatives with the addition of an Atla staff liaison (Christy Karpinski), and four new members (Ann McShane, Greg Murray, Brad Ost, and Erica Pye).

The committee led the review and awarding of both the Open Educational Resources (OER) and Digitization grants. The committee successfully reviewed and awarded an OER grant to General Theological Seminary this year. Their OER, Living Archives: A History of the Center for Christian Spirituality, was recently posted to the Books@Atla Open Press site for hosting. Melissa Chim also presented “Creating an OER Textbook at the General Theological Seminary: Recipient of the Atla OER Invention Grant” at the Atla 2022 Annual Conference. There’s a third round of OER applications, which are due at the end of August 2022.

With the partnership of the committee, OER was the focus of the ACRL Virtual Roadshow Workshop, a webinar titled “Creating and Implementing Open Educational Resources,” and an Atla 2022 Annual Conference panel titled “Supporting the Creation and Implementation of OERs in Religion and Theology.”

With the expansion of the committee, we were able to dedicate time to review and award a new Atla Digitization Grant. Four grants were awarded in its inaugural round, totaling over $13,000! The collections that are covered under these four grants explore resources from around the globe: topics include Resources for the Study of Protestantism in Puerto Rico, Digitization of the Ecumenical Press Service, The Last Leg: Digital Upload and Description of the Mary Bray Spence Collection of Crosses and Religious Symbols, and Emma Beckingsale: An Extraordinary Missionary. “Upon completion of work in 2023, the metadata for these collections will be added to the Atla Digital Library to promote discoverability and accessibility.”

In addition to the two grant programs and OER initiatives, the committee helped facilitate the Wikidata Religion & Theology Community of Practice and updated the Digital Humanities in Religious Studies and Institutional Repositories LibGuides.