Toward an Open Monograph Ecosystem (TOME)

The NYU Office of the Provost, the Center for the Humanities, and the Division of Libraries invite submissions for grants to support the publication of open access digital monographs in the humanities and humanistic social sciences. This program is part of an initiative developed by the Association of American Universities (AAU), the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), and the Association of American University Presses (AAUP). The goal of this program is to advance the wide digital dissemination of scholarship in the humanities and humanistic social sciences to all readers with internet access. The program provides grants of up to $15,000 for scholarly monographs authored by NYU faculty and published by a nonprofit scholarly publisher. The funding is provided to the publisher in order to make the work open access upon publication.

Digital monographs published under this initiative will share the following properties:  

  • Peer-reviewed and under contract to an AAUP press or other non-profit publisher press that adheres to the AAUP best practices for peer review.
  • Published as open-access texts with a Creative Commons license by a publisher that has agreed to work within the guidelines of the initiative. (See the list of publishers here.) Publishers may also issue print and digital consumer editions for sale. It is expected that the institutional digital edition will be distributed through the major open-access platforms (e.g. JSTOR, MUSE Open, DOAB). All editions must bear the Creative Commons license along with or in lieu of the copyright statement; in addition, the digital, open access version must be published simultaneously or before the print publication date.

This initiative was previously referred to as the Open-Access Monograph Publishing Initiative.

Why publish your book Open Access?

Publishing books open access increases the presence of humanities and social science scholarship on the web, and allows for global access to scholarly monographs. An open access publishing model expands readership for academic monographs across many disciplines, but is particularly compelling for topics of interest outside of the U.S., topics with an audience outside of academic institutions, and publications that make use of web technologies.

To see examples of books published through the TOME initiative at NYU and at other universities, see the Tome Referatory.

Deadline: March 15, 2020

Notifications begin around mid-May 2020.


We invite applications from faculty in full-time positions on continuing contracts at NYU in the humanities or humanistic social sciences who have completed a monograph and are under contract to a participating AAUP press or other non-profit publisher press. Books that have been published are not eligible for TOME. Special consideration is given to faculty at the early stages of their career. If you are unsure whether you are eligible, please contact the Center directly.


Up to $15,000 per successful application, to be provided to the publisher to support the costs of publishing and dissemination of the open-access (i.e., free to readers) digital edition. In special cases, such as the presence of extensive illustrations, audiovisual examples, or custom digital design, a book may warrant a larger amount. If the publisher does not require the full $15,000, a smaller amount will be awarded.

Application Instructions

All application components must be submitted electronically via the online application. Applicants and publishers are expected to work together to provide the necessary information about the project.

1. Applicant Information

Applicants will be asked to include personal information, including full title, department, and school.

2. Project Information

Applicants will be asked to include the title of the project and the key dates of publication in addition to the documents listed below.

Statement of Purpose (Word Document or PDF)

In no more than 1000 words, submit a statement of the work’s intellectual purpose and significance, and its appropriateness for the values supported by this initiative. In addition, applications should address the following questions:

Why is open access (OA) valuable for this particular book?
Describe the author’s other open access activities, if any.
How will the author work to promote the open access edition?
Questions for the publisher:
Describe the publisher’s other open access activities, if any.
How will your publisher make the OA edition available?
Under which Creative Commons license will be book be licensed?
How will the publisher promote and market the open access edition?
How much funding is requested in order to publish the book OA?      

Budget (Word Document or PDF)

Submit a budget for the book. The publisher should provide specific line-items (e.g. plant and paper-printing-and-binding (PP&B)) and their estimate of income lost due to the publication of the OA edition. The budget should include the TOME grant.

Contract (Word Document or PDF)

Include a copy of your publication contract.

Selection Criteria & Review Process

Each proposal is reviewed by the selection committee and will be evaluated in accordance with the applicant’s statement of the work’s intellectual purpose and significance, and its appropriateness for the values supported by this initiative.