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Columbia Earthscape Wins AAP Award

February 2000 The AAP (Association of American Publishers, Inc.) has awarded Columbia Earthscape: The Online Resource on the Global Environment its 1999 Best New Internet-Based Electronic Product - Math /Science. The award is granted by the AAP'S Professional/Scholarly Publishing Division. Columbia Earthscape (www.earthscape.org), the first multi-media resource in the Earth sciences designed for scientists and laymen alike was officially launched, after being available in preview mode for several months, on December 14, 1999 at the American Geophysical Union conference in San Francisco. Columbia Earthscape is a joint publishing project between Columbia University Press and Columbia University.

Last year Columbia University Press won this same award in the Social Sciences/Humanities category for CIAO: Columbia International Affairs Online. These major electronic publishing projects come under the umbrella of EPIC, the Electronic Publishing Initiative at Columbia which links the expertise of Columbia University Press, the Libraries and the University's Academic Information Systems (AcIS).

Since its launch, Columbia Earthscape has begun to transform the way researchers, teachers, students, and decision makers get critical information in the Earth sciences and environmental policy. Developed in collaboration with distinguished scholars and research institutions, this powerful new resource creates, selects, and links the widest range of Earth-systems resources available online. It contains current research, breaking news, policy debates and curriculum models for Earth science teachers on a wide range of topics. Initial funding has come from a start-up grant from the Office of the Provost at Columbia as well as two three-year grants: a $590,000 grant from the National Science Foundation's Digital Library 2 Program and $200,000 from SPARC, the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition. Following the CIAO model, Columbia Earthscape is available on an annual subscription basis.

Developed in collaboration with distinguished scholars and research institutes, Columbia Earthscape will create, select, and link the widest range of Earth-systems resources available on-line. The site contains over 70,000 pages of multi-media web content, including full-text books, a quarterly online magazine (Earth Affairs), video clips, current journal articles, lectures and seminars, conferences, policy papers and commentary, maps and models, searchable databases, links and live web-casts of crucial conferences. Among the current sources of information are Columbia University, NASA, MIT, The American Museum of Natural History and ABC News. As the site matures, 2,000 pages of information will be added monthly.