Two months of extreme criticism over the decision to shut down the award winning university press has led to The University of Missouri statement Monday that the press will be replaced with a "re-imagined" digital publishing at MU.
But, the new press will be funded by the University of Missouri- Columbia. Originally, University of Missouri Press was funded through the overarching University of Missouri System.
The University of Missouri System announced on May 24 that it would close the press and lay-off or resign its 10 employees as a cost cutting measure- as it cannot afford $400,000 subsidy. This move was met with huge public outcry and nearly 5500 people from across the country signed a petition in support of saving the press.
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Though the MU-Columbia campus has decided to take over, the public's outcry has not subdued. The idea presented Monday for a new press failed to mollify them, who said they still see it as an execution of the 54-year-old book publishing operation.
The university said Speer Morgan, who now leads The Missouri Review, would direct the new press operation.
Morgan was said to be involved in aiding university leaders develop the plan for the new press. The press will begin an immediate national search for an editor-in-chief.
The new press is going to be housed on the Columbia Campus, in a few rooms in McReynolds Hall. The new model will digitize the current catalog of the press with the help of the MU Libraries.
The press has published 2,000 scholarly books in half a century, is still going to honor the publishing contracts made before the May announcement.