Transcript: For Frankfurt, Solutions For Accelerating Global Access to Knowledge

Interview with CCC’s Chuck Hemenway

For podcast release Thursday, September 21, 2017

KENNEALLY: For all its celebration of literature, science, and creative expression, Frankfurt Book Fair in 2017 can often feel like a technology business trade show. Software vendors tout a myriad of solutions for digital transformation, from facilitating collaboration on a global scale to delivering analytic insights from deep within big data.

Welcome to Copyright Clearance Center’s pod cast series, I’m Christopher Kenneally for Beyond the Book. In Hall 4.2, technology vendors take their turn in the spotlight at a series of 30 minute hot spot presentations targeting scientific and technical publishers. Coming up in October, CCC hosts a pair of hot spots that you’ll want to make room for on your show calendar. My colleague Chuck Hemenway joins me now with details. Welcome to Beyond the Book, Chuck.

HEMENWAY: Glad to be here.

KENNEALLY: Well, you and I will both be traveling shortly to the Frankfurt Book Fair and participating in a variety of programs. Copyright Clearance Center has a whole schedule throughout the week of events that we’re sponsoring and bringing our executives to, and you’ll be there as well, on the trade show floor at our stand, ready to greet people who want to come and visit and speak with you. That’s at Hall 4.2 at Stand E18, reasonably easy to find, as I remember, right at the front as you walk into the hall itself, so you really can’t miss us at Copyright Clearance Center. Look for our name and logo there.

But what we want to talk about right now, Chuck, is the hot spots. These happen in the corners of the hall, they’re open to anyone to stop by and learn about the latest technologies and also to find out about what organizations like Copyright Clearance Center think about the publishing industry itself, and the business and the direction of the business. So we have two programs that are looking at that, one more general, and the other specific.

The general one is about the digital transformation journey that publishers are undergoing. We would think that journey should be over by now, but good lord, we’re finding out it’s going to take all of us a lot longer than maybe we thought. That comes up on Wednesday, 11 October, at 11:00, and we call it “Knowledge Engineering: The New Business Value Accelerator in the Digital Transformation Journey.”

Hall 4.2 is full of scholarly publishers, Chuck, and they’re after a number of things these days with their content. Still very valuable content indeed, and they want to be able to help customers with their workflow and facilitate collaboration and all of that. But it is about practical solutions – data-driven practical solutions. This is sponsored by our subsidiary based in the UK, Ixxus, which you’re beginning to learn a great deal about. Maybe you can give people an idea of what to expect. The kinds of insights that knowledge engineering can provide publishers are what, exactly?

HEMENWAY: Well, it really pertains to the journey of digital transformation. As you mentioned, everybody’s talked about it, it’s a known known, we all need to transform our businesses, in some cases move them to the cloud. Knowledge engineering is a simple extension of that thinking, about getting at the real assets that are locked up inside data and mastering the tools required to get there. So there are new suites of tools that corporations and publishers specifically are leveraging around mining, analytics, semantic enrichment, all of these things that will help us extract even more data from the content that we have.

KENNEALLY: And relationships are critical here. There’s the relationship publishers have with the data, but there’s also the relationships, especially in scholarly publishing, that the publishers have with a variety of customers. They don’t have a single customer, they have a number of stakeholders in their business – the authors, the researchers who submit the work, the institutions that pay for subscriptions and otherwise look for that content to fill out their information catalogue. How does knowledge engineering help the publishers with those relationships?

HEMENWAY: More than ever, those relationships are all, at their root, customer relationships –those are all customers of the publisher. Helping them get max value is what the publishers want to achieve. To do that, they need to provide whole new suites of tools that let the customers get to what they want. In many cases – all cases now – it’s not simply PDFs of content, it’s much more than that. So knowledge engineering signals what we’ve talked about before, which is publishers morphing their business models into becoming service providers more than content providers. So knowledge engineering is one of those signals about publishers evolving that model to providing services over top of the content.

KENNEALLY: Right. And the experts we will have delivering on this are talking about not only the situation today, but the future of publishing. We’ll be hearing about the future of Ixxus and some of the new directions that Ixxus plans to take. But we’re going in the same direction as our customers, and publishers are really moving forward. As you say, they are technology companies today, they are information providers. Publishing is a word that – it still applies, but it seems a bit old-fashioned.

HEMENWAY: That’s true. It’s almost an unfortunate limiting description of the industry now, just to simply call it publishing because it is so much more than that. Publishers are really pushing the envelope, investing hundreds of millions of dollars into building, creating, acquiring systems and services that can make the experience so much better for their various customers.

KENNEALLY: This is Chris Kenneally for Beyond the Book and we’re talking with my colleague, Chuck Hemenway, giving you a preview of Copyright Clearance Center’s presence at the Frankfurt Book Fair coming up the week of the 10th of October in Frankfurt, Germany, of course. We’re focusing on the hot spots that take place in Hall 4.2. You can visit Copyright Clearance Center at our stand, which is E18, and the other hot spot, Chuck, that you are very closely indeed involved with is on Thursday, the 12th of October at 3:00 PM in the afternoon, or 1500, as they enjoy saying there in Germany. We’re calling it an open access master class for publishers, University APCs.

What we have discovered in this ongoing conversation that Copyright Clearance Center has had with those stakeholders in the scientific publishing world, particularly around issues related to open access, that the article publication charges, the fees that the authors pay, have presented just a range of challenges for all of the stakeholders, for the publishers, for the institutions, for the funders, and for the authors. Many of these were unanticipated at the beginning of this other journey, this OA journey. What seems to be needed now is some kind of business-minded application that serves all these stakeholders that reduces inefficiencies, that allows for university staff, for funders, for authors to manage all these various compliance rules and taxes and everything else which, at the moment, are overwhelming them.

So, what do we expect to hear about at that session?

HEMENWAY: You’ll be hearing an update, I think, is the best way to put it, about where we are in this journey, regarding bringing the stakeholders together in the open access market. So to solve the problems that you’ve identified, we need to have cooperation from all the stakeholders, that’s authors, funders, institutions, publishers, of course, to gather around strategies, to gather around standards and identifiers, to have agreement and consensus on certain things so that everyone can get what they want.

We started out this journey a few years ago, working from the publisher end because that’s really the bottleneck before content is being published, that’s where it’s the most critical to have these new functionalities. Now, we’re building up from that foundation to meet the institutions where they are, the funders where they are, to let them get access to that shared data, to have approval workflows that they’ve been asking for for years – before they grant an author funding, they want to verify their identity – things that sound simple now, but just aren’t simple at that kind of scale. So we’re there to showcase the new functionality that has been built out to meet the needs of the institution and the funder, and to really help folks understand the power of gathering around a central source of data.

KENNEALLY: Chuck, what do people need to know, then, about showing up at these hot spots? They can contact you at your e-mail, which we will provide on the post – it’s just, we have a full schedule online at, and including easy-to-use buttons that just drop the event into your Outlook calendar, we try to make this as painless and frictionless as we can, and really just even if they haven’t done that, but want to drop by, we can provide them with information at the show itself. So that’s at stand E18.

HEMENWAY: That’s right. I would say it would be great to RSVP, these events usually sell out early. Of course they don’t cost anything but in most years there’s standing room only, so I would say get there a few minutes ahead of time to make sure that you can participate, and get there early and get up front because invariably there’s a great opportunity to exchange ideas, you run great programs where folks are urged to participate, so if these subjects are of interest to you, get there early, get up front, and become part of the conversation.

KENNEALLY: An important point, Chuck, we really do invite participation. As we said, listening to our customers and hearing what they are concerned about is very important to us at Copyright Clearance Center. Appreciate your joining me today. Chuck Hemenway from the Business Development Group here at Copyright Clearance Center, also working with our subsidiary, Ixxus. Chuck, thanks a lot.

HEMENWAY: Danke schön.

KENNEALLY: And we will tell people, too, about some of the other events that CCC is involved with throughout the week of Frankfurt Book Fair. Our CEO, Tracey Armstrong, is moderating a panel at the Tuesday STM conference which will be looking at diversity to improve scholarly research. That’s a panel discussion that Tracey will lead. It also features Jim Hirsch (sp?) from Elsevier, Mandy Hill from Cambridge University Press, Leon Heward-Mills from Taylor & Francis, and Professor Sonya Smith who is with the Howard University in the United States and is a professor in their Department of Mechanical Engineering.

We also regularly appear at the Frankfurt Rights Meeting. The Frankfurt show is, of course, about rights – the rights to publish and re-publish all kinds of materials, and the Frankfurt Rights Meeting will include a presentation from our International Relations Executive Director, Michael Healy on “Change is the New Constant,” a close-up on the East Asian market. We will also have Tracey Armstrong very busy this week at Frankfurt Book Fair – or that week at Frankfurt Book Fair. She’s on a panel that is part of the markets program in Hall 4, Room Europa, which is asking the question, “Just how hard is it to break the glass ceiling?” She’ll be part of a panel that includes CEOs and leading publishers, women, individuals from France, from India, from the Philippines, from the UK, and that’s all led by moderator Jane Tappuni, who is the head of business development for IPR License.

So all of that and much more online at

Beyond the Book is produced by Copyright Clearance Center, a global leader in content management, discovery, and document solutions through its relationships with those who use and create content. CCC and its subsidiaries, RightsDirect and Ixxus, drive market-based solutions that accelerate knowledge, power publishing, and advance copyright. Beyond the Book co-producer and recording engineer is Jeremy Brieske of Burst Marketing. I’m Christopher Kenneally. Join us again soon on Beyond the Book.

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