STM US Annual Virtual Conference – Society Day 2020


Future proofing your society through transformation

Tuesday, April 28th, 2020

***Please note: recordings of STM virtual events will only be made available to registered attendees

The 6th Annual STM Society Day conference is dedicated to helping the scholarly society publisher community come together to discuss their opportunities, challenges, and common issues.  

The scholarly publishing industry is in an accelerating rate of disruption.  Society publishers and university presses have a distinct role to play, given their engagement with the research communities they serve. As researchers are seeking new ways to conduct, create, and circulate their work to reach as wide an audience as possible, societies and university presses are evolving to meet these changing needs. STM Society Day 2020 will explore how these publishers can utilize their unique competencies and networks for growth in these dynamic and challenging times.

Programme (Timings subject to slight change)


Virtual conference login


Welcome & opening – Penelope Lewis, Chair STM Society Day Executive Programming Committee, Chief Scientist, Strategic Planning and Analysis at American Chemical Society
STM CEO welcome - Ian Moss, Chief Executive Officer, STM Association


Growth beyond the core: diversification and innovation at a society
Keynote speaker introduction
Opening keynote: Jasper Simons, Chief Publishing Officer of the American Psychological Association (APA).

As societies navigate the challenges in the scholarly communications landscape, opportunities emerge for publishers who boldly seek new ways of delivering value to their communities.

Many scholarly societies and associations rely on their journal publishing programs to generate prestige and resources for the organisation. With the pressures on the library subscription model not waning, how are publishers responding? Reminiscing about the “good old days” is not an option. Some publishers have started exciting new initiatives to diversify their programs. At the 2020 STM Society Day, you will meet publishers who are leading the way in ensuring that their scholarly societies continue to play a vital role in the world of tomorrow. 

Jasper has put the APA on an innovative new growth path to push psychology beyond the lab. In recent years, he and his team have developed new product lines that will ensure the future relevance of the association and the field.

During his presentation, Jasper will share how he collaborated with internal stakeholders to develop a new publishing strategy. He will draw upon his experiences in securing organisational buy-in and funding. He will share what challenges he faced in moving the organisation in a new direction. And he will provide a path as other publishers consider their own options for staying relevant in today’s turbulent times.


Break & networking


Growth beyond the core: diversification and innovation at a society

Moderated by Christine Dunn, Head of Strategy, Publisher Markets, Clarivate 

The changing landscape of publishing requires societies to invest in product diversification and to innovate beyond the core. The unique circumstances within societies can pose challenges to diversification, including their not-for-profit status, risk profiles, governance, and external member stakeholders. This session will explore how fellow societies have addressed these unique circumstances to enable growth at their organisations. Topics covered will include: organisational changes required for a stronger product development or innovation function; how partnerships or new ventures with like-minded organisations can accelerate diversification; and how product diversification can contribute to a more robust value proposition for society members.

Katherine Fryer, Executive Vice President, Membership at the American Chemical Society

Casper Grathwohl, Academic Product Director and President, Oxford Languages at Oxford University Press

Cory Wiegert, CEO, CancerLinQ


Break & networking


Navigating the changing landscape of open access

Moderated by: Colette E. Bean, Chief Publishing Officer, American Physiological Society

Scholarly publishing is in an accelerating state of change, with publishers of scholarly content introducing new models that will provide unfettered immediate open access to research publications, in response to the needs of many stakeholders across the research enterprise – funders, governments, librarians and researchers. This session features speakers who are tackling these issues head on to develop new sustainable models for open access to accelerate discovery, advance knowledge and eliminate barriers for the communities they serve.

Scott Delman, Director of Publications, ACM

Tasha Mellins-Cohen, Director of Technology and Innovation at the Microbiology Society

Elaine L. Westbrooks,  Vice Provost for University Libraries & University Librarian University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill


Break & networking


Cooperation amongst societies: shared initiatives

Moderated by: Brett Rubinstein, Chief Commercial Officer, GeoScienceWorld

Prior to the internet, societies were largely independent in their publishing and printing processes.  The rise of the digital publishing era has introduced both complexities and opportunities in creating and streamlining processes for collecting and disseminating research publications and data, necessitating shared industry initiatives like CrossRef, ORCID, CHORUS, GetFTR, and others. Societies themselves have banded together to keep up with the needs of their members and authors. This session will explore the impact of these shared initiatives on societies and university presses. How can societies best leverage these initiatives? What technology or society partnerships are available to take advantage of shared technology and infrastructures at lower cost? Join us as our panel will answer these questions and many more.

Julie Gill, Vice President, Education Center Strategy and Operations 

Susan King, Executive Director, Rockefeller University Press

Ralph Youngen, Senior Director, Technology Strategy & Partnerships, American Chemical Society


Break & networking


Framework for the future

Moderated by: Thane Kerner, CEO, Silverchair Holdings

Are society publishers ready to embrace the opportunities and challenges that the future may bring?  With new emerging technologies and distributed infrastructure changing our world, rapidly changing consumer preferences, and challenges coming both internally and externally, how should a society publisher plan for the next three-to-five years?  How does the current crisis impact societies in particular, and what can they do to protect and strengthen their business? Good or bad, right or wrong, society publishers must be ready to exploit or otherwise take on these challenges to continue to fulfil their missions. Put your seat belt on as our diverse panel looks into a crystal ball and tells us what they see.

Brooks Hanson, Executive Vice President, Science, American Geophysical Union
Lauren Kane, CEO, Delta Think, Inc.
Steve Leicht, President, Digital Science Research Solutions Inc.


Break & networking


Transforming for Growth

Alix Vance, CEO, GeoScienceWorld

The program for STM Society Day is designed to address the current challenges and opportunities as well as the potential for transformation.  Our respective organisations must evolve to address the changing needs of researchers, readers, publishers and other stakeholders.  Our closing keynote speaker will address these topics and provide key executive insights to these and other key discussion points that we were raised during the day.


Meeting wrap-up & close

Penelope Lewis, Chair, STM Society Day Committee, Chief Scientist, Strategic Planning and Analysis, American Chemical Society


Close of Society Day


Executive Planning Committee (EPC):

Chair – Penelope Lewis - Chief Scientist, Strategic Planning and Analysis, American Chemical Society
Colette E. Bean - Chief Publishing Officer, American Physiological Society
Michael Clarke - Managing Partner, Clarke & Esposito
Philip V. DiVietro - Managing Director, Publishing, American Society of Mechanical Engineers 
Will Schweitzer - Chief Product Officer, Silverchair Information Systems

Events Terms and Conditions

Where an event has registration fees, cancellations made in writing up to 30 days before an event are eligible for a 50% refund. No refunds can be made for cancellations received on or after 30 days prior to the event date, however, substitutions may be made free of charge at any time.

Registration fees do not include insurance. Participants are advised to take out adequate personal insurance to cover travel, accommodation, cancellation and personal effects.