Some of my education colleagues were over in Redmond recently and part of the briefing was from Microsoft Research (MSR) on the work they are doing to enhance scholarly communications with software and services.  The mission of this work is to focus on data and information flow in a coordinated and seamless manner.

The output of all this is a series of applications and perhaps the most relevant to Higher Education are:

 

Trident Scientific Workflow Workbench

Research Desktop

Zentity (Research-Output Repository Platform) v1.0

The Research Information Centre (Beta)

Libra Academic Search

There are many other tools on here, all of which seem to be either service/hosted or free to download from Codeplex.  One that looks particularly interesting is the Conference Management Toolkit, which handles the complex workflow of academic conferences.  Also, the Electronic Journals Service could help facilitate self-publishing of workshop and conferencing proceedings and smaller journals.

 

The full site is here http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/collaboration/focus/education/scholarlycomm.aspx