Better Books, Higher Sales, & Increased Access to Knowledge

The Open Review Toolkit is open source software that enables you to convert your book manuscript into a website that can be used for Open Review. During the Open Review process everyone can read and annotate your manuscript, and you can collect valuable data to help launch your book.

What is Open Review?

Open Review is a process to improve academic books. When an author submits a manuscript to an academic press for peer review, the manuscript will also be converted into a website for a parallel Open Review. During Open Review, everyone in the world will be able to read the book and annotate it using, an open source annotation system. Further, in addition to collecting explicit feedback, the Open Review website will also collect implicit feedback such as the traffic and abandonment rate of each section of the book. Once the Peer Review process is complete, the author will use the information from the Peer Review and the Open Review to improve the manuscript. The Open Review period ends when the author submits the final manuscript to the publisher.

Why Open Review?

Better Books

During the Open Review process you can collect feedback to improve your manuscript. This feedback can be explicit—with the annotation system—or implicit—based on traffic patterns.

Higher Sales

During Open Review you can collect valuable market intelligence to launch your book. You can also collect email addresses of people who might want to buy your book when it is published. Because the book is not yet available for purchase there is little chance of Open Review cannibalizing sales.

Increased Access to Knowledge

Get your manuscript out from behind paywalls and make it available to everyone in the world using our open source software.


The Open Review Toolkit enables Open Review website with powerful features.

  • Annotation system

    Allow everyone to annotate your manuscript.

  • Reader analytics

    Track how people are interacting with your manuscript in the wild. For example, you will be able to see which parts of your manuscript are being read and how people are finding it.

  • Framework for experimentation

    Pick some metrics, design alternatives, and then see which one actually works better. Enables both A/B tests and bandit tests.

  • Internationalization infrastructure

    Using machine translation technology, our infrastructure enables you to run your Open Review website in more than 100 languages simultaneously.

  • Desktop, laptop, tablet, and mobile

    People can read your book on any device.

  • Search + Social friendly

    Optimized to rank high in search engine results and to share well on social media websites such as Twitter and Facebook.

  • Build a community

    Collect email addresses from people who want to be a part of the community around your book.

  • Easy hosting

    Produces a static webpage which makes hosting easy and free at a place like Github Pages.

  • Team Friendly

    Designed so that authors, research assistants, editors, and publishers can all have realtime access to information and work together seamlessly.

Honest Assessment

Using the Open Review Toolkit is not yet as easy as we want it to be. Academic manuscripts are all different, and we know that you have high standards for how your work is going to appear in the world. So, don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have questions or problems. And, if you are interested, we can recommend developers you can hire to make the Open Review Toolkit work well with your manuscript.

Next Steps

If you are just starting

Download our template