6 changes affecting academic publishing

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To celebrate Academic Book Week, we’re running a series of posts on Academic Publishing. Here are 6 of the big changes which are affecting the sector.

1. Changes to funding models

The way degree courses are funded are a constant source of debate and subject to change. In many countries, funding is increasingly stretched and fees are often paid for by the student, in whole or in part. In these cases, the students have limited resources to fund books.

2. Editions date quickly

With many industries and topics undergoing great change, at fast speeds, students can be reluctant to spend money on books for topics which date quickly.

3. Greater demand for ebook access

Students increasingly expect their books to be available in digital formats, but the cost to libraries is more than print versions.

4. Academics are stretched

The number of academics and staff in institutions has not increased in proportion to the number of students, and they are more pressured to spend time researching and publishing work. Their time and services are stretched, making it difficult for publishers to pitch their books directly those responsible for the reading list.

5. Less reliance on buying books

Free online content allows for students to be less reliant on library resources and book-buying. The internet has also allowed for more second-hand book buying, digital book lending and new companies (competition).

6. Technology

New technology and the sheer amount of content available means that students tend to ‘deep read’ less, often reading excerpts or chapters rather than whole books.

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