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09.03.2015 | SSP News & Releases

Fall Seminar Preview – A Day in the Life of a Scholarly Publisher

Join us on Thursday, September 17, 2015 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. for the Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP) seminar “A Day in the Life of a Scholarly Publisher: Tasks, Issues, Career Options.” Held September 16-17 at the Washington D.C. offices of the American Geophysical Union, this session will be the third of the Fall 2015 seminar series. Register today, and find additional information about all four seminars.

During “A Day in the Life of a Scholarly Publisher,” we’ll follow the career paths of three scholarly publishing professionals—Kent Anderson, Angela Cochran, and Greg Britton. Kent Anderson is the former editor-in-chief of the Scholarly Kitchen (as well as its founder), a former SSP Board member, and past President of SSP. He is also the Publisher at AAAS/Science. Angela Cochran is the Director of Journals for the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and is currently the President of the Council of Science Editors. Greg Britton is the Editorial Director at Johns Hopkins University Press.

Our discussion will cover the career path each professional took and what each of their job titles entailed to get to where they are now. They will also discuss what they see for their future and what they envision they need to do to get there.

The session will be moderated by Phill Jones, the Head of Publisher Outreach at Digital Science, and member of the SSP annual conference and educational committees. We asked Phill to tell us a little bit more about “A Day in the Life of a Scholarly Publisher.”

What can attendees expect from this seminar?

A Day in the Life of a Scholarly Publisher is the third of the fall seminars and the first part of a two-part series on professional development. Attendees can expect to be entertained and informed by a series of very experienced public speakers who’ll give them a personalized guided tour of the publishing industry as they see it. Whether attendees are in the industry themselves or looking to learn more about it, there’ll be insights into the sorts of things that publishers actually do on a daily basis, as well as advice on career paths, getting hired and making a difference in scholarly communication.

Tell us a little about this group of panelists. How were they selected?

We’ve selected three very different but equally fascinating panelists to give us a guided tour of their own personal careers and dispense some advice. We felt that we needed to get as diverse a series of viewpoints as practical, so recruited speakers from different parts of the industry. Kent Anderson will be well known to most people working in publishing. He’s the former president of SSP and the founding head chef at the Scholarly Kitchen. He’s spent many years working in society publishing and is the publisher at AAAS/Science. Angela Cochran is also a very experienced publisher as the Director of Journals for ASCE, and President of the Council of Science Editors. Lastly, Greg Britton will talk about what it’s like to work at the interface of publishing and academia as Editorial Director of Johns Hopkins University Press.

I expect some interesting discussion. I’ll be moderating; I have a very different perspective again, in my work as a scientist and then later as a start-up publisher. Working for a technology and consulting company, I’ll try to keep somewhat of an outside view and keep the conversation accessible for everybody.

Are there any topics in particular you hope the panelists will address during the seminar?

The goal for the session is to give attendees some good ideas about how to build their own careers. As well as asking each panelist to describe what they do on a daily basis, we’ll be covering everybody’s personal journeys, how they got into publishing, what they wish they knew when they started, and what they look for when hiring and promoting.

What would you like attendees to take away from this seminar?

We hope that attendees come away with some concrete ideas about how to develop their own careers and maybe some useful contacts. We also hope that there’ll be some people in the room, perhaps from libraries who might be interested in entering the publishing industry, or might want to start publishing operations at their own institutions. For those people, we’d like to give them a sense of what’s involved in publishing, to perhaps demystify things a little.

Sign up today for “A Day in the Life of a Scholarly Publisher: Tasks, Issues, Career Options” and the other SSP Fall 2015 Seminars.

By Jenny Peng, Communications Committee

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