Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A new Open Access archaeology journal

The Journal of Archaeology in the Low Countries has just been launched. This is an Open Access journal sponsored by a group of organizations in the Netherlands and Belgium. Published by the Amsterdam University Press, the journal has a distinguished Editorial Board and Advisory Board. The inaugural issue has a diverse set of articles, on topics ranging from coins to stable isotopes to eelgrass, and from agency to "Virilis the veterinarian."

This looks like a great journal, but this does not surprise me at all. I spent a week at in the Low Countries (mostly at Leiden University) a few years ago, and the Dutch and Belgian archaeologists impressed me greatly with their skills, their scholarly productivity, and their intellectual energy.

I wish people and organizations in my own areas of interest were as enlightened as the founders of this journal. Just compare JALC to the commercially-oriented Open Anthropology Journal and you will see why I despair. I blogged about that journal when it started up, and a year into its existence I can't say that my opinion of it is very high. And of course my suggestions that the Society for American Archaeology might want to consider starting an OA journal were met with stony silence (and that silence cannot be attributed to the obscurity of this blog, because I also published my suggestion in a letter to the SAA Newsletter).

5 comments:

ArchAsa said...

The TOAJ website hurts my eyes and senses and has barely working links (takes 30s to load a page of content). JALC has a very professional logo but the content page looks like it was built by amateurs in the 90's.

We archaeologists seriously need to bond with some good people in graphics and illustrations...

Good start though

Michael E. Smith said...

Yes, I agree. But its still better than many academic web sites...

Carl Lipo said...

I fully support Open Access journals for archaeology and wish that the SAA could see that fears of dropping printed versions for members causing lessened fees is unwarranted. Who (other than perhaps libraries w/o much in the way of network infrastructure) needs a paper version. The gains increased citations and impact would completely offset any losses and readership would substantially jump.

ArchAsa said...

Don't even get me started on academic and university web sites...

Anonymous said...

Why doesn't this blog feature warthogs?