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Society of Architectural Historians Launches Bold Electronic Initiative in Partnership with University of California Press and JSTOR


Rebekah Darksmith
Sales & Marketing Director
University of California Press, Journals + Digital Publishing
[email protected]

Society of Architectural Historians Launches Bold Electronic Initiative in Partnership with University of California Press and JSTOR

Chicago, IL – March 16, 2010
The Society of Architectural Historians (SAH) is proud to announce the launch of the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians Online (JSAH Online). Developed in partnership with University of California Press and JSTOR, and using software from Atypon Systems, JSAH Online offers access to JSAH from the first volume published in 1941 through the present. The current issues provide leading research articles and reviews about the built environment accompanied by extensive multimedia content including images, videos, and GIS-driven visualizations.

JSAH Online is the first online journal devoted to the arts and humanities that incorporates cutting-edge multimedia features and heralds the launch of the next generation of scholarly communication. Such features in the inaugural issue include recreated music from an ancient Roman funeral, a zoomable image of a 37-foot-long Panorama of Constantinople from 1559, and a 3D model of the Roman Forum and environs overlaid on a Google Earth map.

“JSAH Online is an incredibly significant communications initiative – not only for SAH but broadly for scholarly publishing in the arts and humanities,” says Pauline Saliga, SAH Executive Director. “The features and functionality in JSAH Online allow scholars and the public more immediate and deeper understanding of leading-edge work being produced in architectural history.”

Rebecca Simon, Associate Director, University of California Press and Director of the
Journals + Digital Publishing Division, echoes this sentiment: "This launch realizes a bold and exciting vision for integrating multimedia features to enhance the study and understanding of the built environment. We are honored to partner with the Society in this endeavor and excited

about the opportunities the new digital environment creates not only for JSAH but for other disciplines as well."

JSAH Online is the culmination of several years of collaborative work among its partners. Funded by an initial planning grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and followed by an additional Mellon foundation grant, JSAH Online was conceived from the outset to take full advantage of the latest developments in online publishing. Professor Hilary Ballon of New York University, who conceived of and spearheaded the project as Editor of JSAH, collaborated with scholars at SAH and computer programmers at ARTstor, the New York-based online digital library, to develop an initial prototype for JSAH Online. “We knew that our vision had incredible potential for the wider scholarly community,” said Professor Ballon. “We also knew that to fully realize that potential, we needed to align ourselves with partners best positioned to help bring JSAH Online into being.”

JSAH Online’s inaugural issue, which was released on March 1, 2010, was developed by current JSAH Editor David Brownlee, Professor of the History of Art at the University of Pennsylvania.
Articles in the first issue were subjected to the rigorous peer review process, and in addition were particularly groomed to utilize the innovative multimedia platform. “The integration of multimedia elements in these pieces dramatically increases the depth and breadth of the communication between authors and readers,” says Professor Brownlee. “Victor Hugo judged that the publication revolution of the Renaissance (moveable type printing) had annihilated the art of Gothic architecture. Happily, we can report that the digital publication revolution of our time is marvelously supportive of the study, appreciation, and creation of the built environment.”

SAH selected University of California Press as its partner in publishing JSAH in early 2009. That decision was followed quickly by announcement of a new effort called the Current Scholarship Program, initiated by University of California Press and JSTOR. JSAH Online is the first journal to be launched online as part of the Current Scholarship Program.

“The Current Scholarship Program has come to life with JSAH Online,” commented Michael Spinella, JSTOR Managing Director. “From the beginning, we have shared a vision with University of California Press and SAH for this effort to be a catalyst to help many publishers create new opportunities for their authors to publish media-rich scholarly works and for their readers to engage their arguments in novel and compelling ways. We are on our way.”

JSAH Online will be available exclusively to SAH members during 2010. Beginning in 2011, all JSAH content, features, and functionality will be incorporated into a new JSTOR platform where it will be available to SAH members as well as to non-member faculty, researchers, and students working at subscribing institutions around the world.

For more information about JSAH Online and to view a freely available multimedia article, see Media interested in full site access should request access through the SAH office at [email protected]. Please include your name, publication name, mailing address, telephone and email address. Your user name and password will be emailed to you.


Society of Architectural Historians
The Society of Architectural Historians is the leading international learned society that promotes the study, interpretation and preservation of the built environment worldwide. With seventy years of service to the field of architectural history and its related disciplines, the Society’s membership of approximately 2,500 individuals includes professors of architectural and art history, architects and other design professionals, preservationists, museum curators, students, and others united in their passionate interest in architectural history. Institutional members include other learned societies, university libraries, art and historical museums, and preservation organizations around the world.

University of California Press
Founded in 1893, University of California Press is one of the largest and most distinguished of American university presses, publishing books and journals in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. The Press publishes nearly 200 new books and 40 journals each year, representing a broad spectrum of acclaimed works from innovative first works by young academics to in-depth articles presenting the results of the research and creative thinking of many of the world's foremost scholars. A major publisher of scholarly journals, the Journals + Digital Publishing Division has extensive experience providing traditional and digital publishing services for more than 20 client scholarly societies and associations.

JSTOR is a preservation archive and research platform for the academic community. Through JSTOR, faculty, researchers, and students are able to discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content in a trusted digital archive of over 1,000 academic journals, as well as conference proceedings, monographs, and other scholarly content. More than 6,000 libraries and cultural heritage institutions and hundreds of the world's leading publishers of scholarly literature participate in and support JSTOR. JSTOR is part of ITHAKA, a not-for-profit organization helping the academic community use digital technologies to advance scholarship and teaching in sustainable ways. ITHAKA also includes two additional services – Ithaka S+R and Portico.

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