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Colin McAteer

Director, Publishing Operations for the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)


Please tell us a bit about yourself (e.g. hometown, current locale, course of study).
I grew up on Long Island in New York State, went to the University of Notre Dame in the mid-west of the United States, and now live in New York City.

Describe some of your current responsibilities, and what type of organization you belong to.
I am currently Director, Publishing Operations for the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). ASME is one of the founding engineering societies in the United States. My focus, primarily in journal publishing, is on evolving our traditional content offerings in service of disseminating the very best research as widely as possible to a worldwide audience. A primary responsibility is the incorporation of diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives in all aspects of our publishing program.

What was your first scholarly publishing role? How did you get that job? What path led to your current position?

My first job was Publishing Assistant “way back when” for ASCE. After exposure to the world of publishing, my interest and passion continued to grow. Starting at the onset of the print to digital transition, the continuous development and application of technological innovation to publishing has delivered a constant stream of challenges that has been fun and rewarding.

If there was a pivotal moment or key person in your career development, please describe briefly.

With the ‘break up’ of the sister societies where ASCE moved from NYC to Virginia in the late 1990’s, Philip DiVietro hired me to join ASME and I was able to stay in New York. Philip continues to be a strong mentor and driving force in the publishing industry.

What tools, web sites and organizations do you find most valuable for your career development?

SSP of course! In addition, groups like STM, CrossRef, CHOR Inc., NISO, and other engineering societies are made up of energetic and creative people doing fantastic work that directly contributes in a positive way to the health and wellbeing of all people.

What are some of the surprises/obstacles that you’ve encountered during your career?
Inertia and complacency.

What do you wish you knew more about?
That’s a long list that grows daily!

What advice would you give to people interested in a career in scholarly communications?
Facilitating the dissemination of peer-reviewed scientific knowledge to make life better is a powerful and sustaining motivator. Keep an open mind and commit to continuous learning!