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Creating other types of content on PubPub

PubPub can be used to create almost any type of content, from digital collections to preprint servers, repositories, blogs, and hard-to-categorize creations. Here are some ideas and examples to use as inspiration if you're coming to PubPub with a novel project in mind.
Published onDec 22, 2021
Creating other types of content on PubPub

This guide assumes that you have a working familiarity with PubPub’s Core Concepts.

Between Pubs, Collections, and Connections, PubPub can be used to create many different types of Communities beyond books, journals, and conferences. In fact, some of our favorite Communities come from people using PubPub in ways we didn’t anticipate to create preprint servers, repositories, overlay journals, personal blogs, digital collections, and other types of content that defy categorization. This will describe, in general terms, how users created different types of novel Communities, and point to some of our favorite examples. We hope it will serve as a jumping off point to help you come up with ideas for your own novel communities.

Preprint servers and open repositories

PubPub can be used to host preprint servers and open repositories by combining its basic submission and review system with collections, connections, and its Crossref depositing features.

One of the best examples is Crimrxiv, which hosts both preprints and postprints.

Crimrxiv uses submission banner blocks on Pages and Collection layouts to allow users to add preprints and postprints. Submission banners can be tied to specific Collections, which allows users to submit to specific sections, and allows admins to filter them by private “submitted”/“rejected” collections.

When users are finished importing or typing their Pubs, they click “request publication” to notify the admins to screen the submissions. These submissions show up in the Reviews tab of the Community. Once they’re screened, admins create releases for the Pubs and deposit them to Crossref as preprints.

For postprints, authors upload author-accepted versions of the papers that they have the rights to archive. After screening, admins create Connections between the postprint on PubPub and the version of record, and then deposit the Pub in Crossref. This creates a Crossref relationship between the version of record and the postprint, which researchers can use to find the openly licensed version of the article.

Overlay journals and preprint review communities

Using Connections, PubPub supports creating “overlay” journals and preprint review communities. One of the best examples is Rapid Reviews: COVID-19, which publishes editorial summaries and individual review reports, all linked together and to the original preprint via connections. When the reviews are deposited to Crossref, To learn more, see our preprint review community toolkit.


Groups publishing reports on PubPub, such as the MIT Open Access Task Force and Expansive Digital Publishing (Duke), are often prioritize the platform’s open review/commenting features for feedback and/or version control and history slider. These make it easy for groups to collect feedback on their report(s) and publish updates as needed. A PubPub Community is also a useful space to publish materials alongside reports (for instance, a toolkit that corresponds with report findings/recommendations).

Learning series

One thing that learning series such as Fermentology take advantage of nicely is PubPub’s ability to support different media and collection types all in once place. It’s this flexibility that allows a multiplicity of resources and communication types to exist in support of learning and instruction. Fermentology does this nicely by publishing recipes, talks, essays, and a format they call “enriched transcripts” alongside each other.


The broad range of activities under the purview of museums and other cultural institutions—from exhibition to preservation to convening to education—has, at times, found support in a PubPub community. Iowa State University Museums and Williams College Museum of Art are two examples we recommend referring to for ideas on how a Community may support different kinds of museum initiatives and community building. The Williams College example has also taken advantage of our Community design customization capability.

Case Studies

Published as a set and instructive by nature but comprising different content than, say, a journal, case studies are a unique output. The SERC Case Studies in Ethical Computing (published by MIT’s Schwarzman College of Computing and with the support of MIT Open Publishing Services), is a nice example of this format on PubPub. This Community uses PubPub’s journals collection to publish sets of case studies as issues.

Personal Blogs

Amrita Das:

Hello, Any suggestions for personal blogs to record research process?