Publishing, in its most general sense, refers to the act of making a work of words or images known to the public. Book publishing encompassed a range of activities through which an author’s manuscript is turned into a printed and bound book which can be made available to an audience of readers. These activities are carried out by networks of organizations and individuals who coordinate production, and the promotion and distribution of books to their potential public.
In another words, it is the process of production and dissemination of literature, music, or information– the activity of making information available to the general public. In some cases, authors may be their own publishers, meaning: originators and developers of content also provide media to deliver and display the content for the same. Also, the word publisher can refer to the individual who leads a publishing company or imprint or to a person who owns a magazine.
Traditionally, the term refers to the distribution of printed works such as books (the “book trade”) newspapers and journals. With the advent of digital information systems and the Internet, the scope of publishing has expanded to include electronic resources, such as the electronic versions of books and periodicals, as well as micropublishing, websites, blogs, video game publishers and the like.
Publishing includes the stages of the development, acquisition, copy editing, graphic design, production–printing (and its electronic equivalents), and marketing and distribution of newspapers, magazines, books, literary works, musical works, software and other works dealing with information, including the electronic media.
Publishers are individuals or corporations responsible for the publishing, printing and distribution of digital or printed material. Publishers also handle the marketing efforts for the publications and usually are not the creator of the material. Publishers simply serve as the intermediary between the author of the publication and the consumermarket(http://www.ehow.com/list_6850864_types-publishing-companies.html).
2. KINDS OF PUBLISHERS
There are many ways of dividing the publishers into different categories like Commercial vs Open Source vs.Self-Publishing; Traditionalor Printed Publishing vs On-line Publishing, etc. For the convenience of the readers, the publishers may be divided into following categories: (http://www.brightonpublishing.com/Pubtypes.html)
2.1. Commercial Publishers (also referred to as a Traditional Publishers)
Most books you see on fiction and non-fiction shelves at your local bookstore have been published through a traditional publishing houses. These houses acquire books from authors, employ editors that help authors revise and polish their book and come up with a marketing plan for the novel. Traditional publishing houses do not take money from the author; they pay the author an advance prior to publication, then a percent of the royalties based on how many copies the book sells.
2.2. Vanity Publishers
Vanity publishers offer the same services as traditional publishers – editorial assistance, marketing and packaging -but the author must purchase these services. As such, vanity publishers are generally less selective when it comes to which books they publish. Few authors are successful with this route. It can be expensive and difficult to sell many copies, as the author is in charge of publicity.
2.3. Subsidy Publishers
Enters into an agreement with the author to publish the author’s manuscript. The agreement is typically non-exclusive with the author retaining certain rights as described in their particular agreement. The author retains ownership of the work. It is more of a partnership between the publisher and the author, whereby the author makes a financial commitment to subsidize a portion of the publishing costs. Subsidy publishers are generally less selective than traditional publishers, taking a larger percentage of the manuscripts they receive for consideration. The publisher derives its profits from the public sale of the book.
2.4. Educational Publishers
Educational publishing houses produce materials such as textbooks and workbooks for the use of schools and universities. These publishers also typically publish multimedia complements to their books, such as software and CD-ROMs.
2.5. Alternative Media Publishers
The newest type of publishing company, alternative media publishers focus on e-books (electronic book used on the Kindle, iPad and other e-readers) and audiobooks, which can include tapes, CDs, MP3s or DVDs.
Self-publishers provide the tools for the author to take on the role of publisher. The authors use the company’s website or package to format their book, create a cover and print their book (at the cost of the author). While some authors are successful with this route, and it is sometimes the best choice for a book.Self-published books are rarely found in bookstores and usually experience small sales.Because the author funds complete production of the book, full ownership and rights are retained in addition to all proceeds from sales.
2.7. Author Service Providers
Although not a publisher in the true sense of the word, the Internet has spawned thousands of companies, print shops and graphic design houses that simply added the word “Publisher” to their name. These companies in spite of having the word “Publisher” in their name are not recognized as publishers in the industry, but service companies providing author services. They are generally not accepted as members of legitimate publishing trade associations.
The primary method of determining if a publisher is really an industry standard publisher is that a legitimate publisher has a vested financial interest in the success of the author’s document. If a company, regardless of the name, does not have that vested financial interest, they are not an industry standard publisher.
3. CURRENT TREND IN PUBLISHING
There is every chance that, in the not too distant future, 2012 may be referred to as the start of a new era in trade publishing, when the industry fully accepted that it is no longer serving a market of consumers converting to digital; rather digital has become a naturalised part of the core offering of the industry. At the same time 2012 would be seen as the start of an era where major publishers decided they needed to bulk up to stand toe to toe with megaliths like Amazon, Google and Apple. The announcement of the merger between Penguin and Random House looks to shake up the industry and set the trend for big name alliances that would dominate the 2014. What does trade publishing look like in 2014 then? Here are five of the trends we can expect to steer the industry agenda over the coming time; Digital forms of publishing, Parsing and leveraging contents, Connecting with associated content environments, Increasing receptivity to multimedia components and Growing interactivity and dialogue. So we can say that the publishing trends in case of journals has already almost shifted towards electronic form and books are following the same path and it will be interesting to see the trend in future.
4. MAJOR GLOBAL SOCIAL SCIENCES PUBLISHERS
Here, not only the bodies who are publishing the literature in social sciences in book or journals forms but also who are hosting such publications or Internet based publishing and societies and institutions involved in making available the information resources in the subject have been covered. It is believed that anything that is posted/hosted on Internet and made available to users is part of published literature. Therefore the following write-up covers the publishers making available the literature in social sciences in printed form, online form, publishing themselves or making others’ literature available to the users at large.
4.1 Oxford University Press
Oxford University Press is a department of the University of Oxford. It furthers the University’s objective of excellence in research, scholarship, and education by publishing worldwide. It currently publishes over 6,000 titles a year worldwide, in a variety of formats which includes dictionaries, English language teaching materials, children’s books, journals, scholarly monographs, printed music, higher education textbooks, and schoolbooks. It publishes well over 230 academic and research journals covering a broad range of subject areas, two-thirds of which are published in collaboration with learned societies and other international organizations. Oxford Journals works with over 100 society partners to maximize the global reach of their journals (www.global.oup.com).
4.2 Cambridge University Press
It is the publishing business of the University of Cambridge and publishes the finest academic and educational writing from around the world. It is both an academic and educational publisher. Since publishing its first work in 1584, it publishes over 45,000 titles by authors from 100 countries which includes professional books, textbooks, monographs, reference works, over 300 academic journals, Bibles and prayer books, English language teaching publications, educational software, and electronic publishing (www.cambridge.org).
4.3 Sage Publishing
The Sage publishing is considered a major social science publisher. The print version of books are available through normal trade channel. In addition to this it has Full-Text Collections are award-winning, discipline-specific research databases of the most popular peer-reviewed journals in Communication Studies, Criminology, Education, Management & Organization Studies, Materials Science, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology, and Urban Studies & Planning published by SAGE Publications and participating societies. It include more than 256 journals, 360,000 articles, book reviews, and editorials, with all the original graphics, tables, and page numbers. The Collections provide researchers and students with a research environment that is easy to use and complete with the most up-to-date content and back files back to volume 1, issue 1. Sage also publishes Encyclopedia of Philosophy and Social Sciences (http://online.sagepub.com).
4.4 Annual Reviews
The Annual Review of Law and Social Science, in publication since 2005, strives to enhance the understanding of the complex connections between law, culture, social structure, and society by focusing on social scientific studies of law and law-like systems of rules, institutions, processes, and behaviors (http://www.annualreviews.org/loi/lawsocsci).
Emerald is a global publisher linking research and practice to the benefit of society. The company manages a portfolio of more than 290 journals and over 2,000 books and book series volumes, as well as providing an extensive range of online products and additional customer resources and services (http://www.emeraldinsight.com/index.htm).
J-STOR is a not–for–profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range of contents in a trusted digital archive of over one thousand academic journals and other scholarly contents. It was founded to help academic libraries and publishers and currently includes more than 2,000 academic journals, dating back to the first volume ever published, along with thousands of monographs and other materials relevant for education. It has digitized more than 50 million pages and continue to digitize approximately 3 million pages annually (www.jstor.org).
4.7 Social Science Research Network (SSRN)
SSRN is devoted to the rapid worldwide dissemination of social science research and is composed of a number of specialized research networks in each of the social sciences. It has hundreds of journals, publishers, and institutions in Partners in Publishing that provide working papers for distribution through SSRN’s eLibrary and abstracts for publication in SSRN’s electronic journals.The SSRN eLibrary consists of two parts: an Abstract Database containing abstracts on over 518,800 scholarly working papers and forthcoming papers and an Electronic Paper Collection currently containing over 424,700 downloadable full text documents. The eLibrary also includes the research papers of a number of Fee Based Partner Publications (http://www.ssrn.com).
4.8 Social Sciences Citation Index
It is the most comprehensive database in Social Sciences from Thomson Reuters. It is accessed via Web of Science and provides quick, powerful access to the bibliographic and citation information to find research data, analyze trends, journals and researchers and share their findings. It help to overcome information overload and focus on essential data from 3,000 of the world’s leading social sciences journals across 50 disciplines (http://thomsonreuters.com/social-sciences-citation-index).
Scopus is a database, which provides the largest abstracts and citations of research literature and quality web sources. Designed for quick, easy and comprehensive search, Scopus also provides superior support for the literature research process. All the data and information in Scopus are updated daily (http://www.scopus.com/home.url).
4.10 Directory of Open Access Journals
Although it is not a direct publishers but a platform to host various important journals to provide full text access. DOAJ provides free access to selected scholarly journals (http://www.doaj.org).
4.11 Project MUSE
A unique collaboration between libraries and publishers, providing 100% full-text, affordable and user-friendly online access to a comprehensive selection of prestigious humanities and social sciences journals. MUSE is also the sole source of complete, full-text versions of titles from many of the world’s leading university presses and scholarly societies. Currently, MUSE provides full-text access to current contents from over 400 titles representing nearly 100 not-for-profit publishers (http://muse.jhu.edu/index.html).
It is a freely available collaborative encyclopedia used maximum by all and publishes large quantity of information on social sciences (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_Page).
4.13 Project Gutenberg
Offers over 36,000 free eBooks to download to your PC, Kindle, Android, iOS or other portable devices. Choose between ePub, Kindle, HTML or simple text formats (http://www.gutenberg.org).
4.14 Science Direct (including Backfiles)
It is a leading full-text scientific database offering journal articles and book chapters from more than 2,500 peer-reviewed journals and more than 11,183 books. The subject coverage also includes Social Sciences andHumanities. It includes over hundreds of book series, handbooks and reference works. The Backfiles programoffers the ability to search a historical archive of over 6.75 million articles, back to Volume 1, Issue 1
Pearson is the world’s leading education publishing company. From pre-school to high school, early learning to professional certification, their curriculum materials, multimedia learning tools and testing programmes help to educate millions of people worldwide – more than any other private enterprise (www.pearson.com).
4.16 Social Sciences Publishers’ Directory
PublishersGlobal is a definitive resource for the global print and digital publishing industry. 95 publishingcompanies that publish Social Sciences books, e-books, magazines have been brought under one umbrella.While delivering the latest publishing news and event information to the international community of publishing industry professionals, PublishersGlobal also functions as an information marketplace for publishing houses of all sizes, service providers to the publishing industry and also for individual artists – authors, illustrators, designers, editors, etc. (http://www.publishersglobal.com).
4.17 ABI/INFORM Complete
The Database Includes: ABI/INFORM Dateline, ABI/INFORM Global, and ABI/INFORM Trade & Industry. It provides a comprehensive coverage of business and economic events from across the globe. The Databaseincludes 3970 journals and provides access to 14,000 full-text doctoral dissertations and master’s theses; 5,200documents available from the publishers Ivey, Thunderbird, Idea Group, and Darden; The Wall Street Journal,Eastern Edition; the premier business newspaper in North America, with back file coverage to 1984; and linkingto Safari Business Books Online (http://proquest.umi.com/login/ipauto).
4.18 SocINDEXwith Full text
SocINDEX with Full Text is the world’s most comprehensive and highest quality sociology research database.
The database features more than 1,910,000 records with subject headings from a 19,300 term sociological thesaurus designed by subject experts and expert lexicographers. SocINDEX with Full Text contains full text for 397 “core” coverage journals dating back to 1908, and 150 “priority” coverage journals. This database also includes full text for more than 720 books and monographs, and full text for 6,743 conference papers
4.19 Humanities International Complete
Humanities International Complete is a comprehensive database of humanities content, providing full text of hundreds of journals, books and other published sources from around the world. This database includes all data from American Humanities Index and Humanities International Index (over 2,000 titles and 2 million records).The database includes full text for more than 770 journals. HIC is an invaluable resource for students, researchers, and educators interested in all aspects of the humanities, with worldwide content pertaining to literary, scholarly and creative thought (http://search.ebscohost.com).
It is a database which contains article titles and information sources that covers over 18 fields of knowledge including Social Sciences. Book publications include major reference works, textbooks, monographs and book series; more than 88,000 titles are available as e-books in 18 subject collections. Also includes the world’s most
comprehensive digitized book collection, with more than 3,500 new eBooks and eReference works every year
4.21Wiley Online Library
It is the international publishing business of John Wiley & Sons, with strengths in every major academic and professional field and partnerships with many of the world’s leading societies. Wiley publishes nearly 1,500 peer-reviewed journals and 1,500+ new books annually in print and online, as well as databases, major referenceworks and laboratory protocols. It delivers seamless integrated access to over 4 million articles, over 14,000 online books, and hundreds of reference works, laboratory protocols and databases (http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com).
4.22 Social Science Research Council
It is an independent, nonprofit international organization founded in 1923 which nurtures new generations of social scientists, fosters innovative research, and mobilizes necessary knowledge on important public issues. The SSRC pursues its mission by working with practitioners, policymakers, and academic researchers in the social sciences, related professions, and the humanities and natural sciences. It brings out lot of literature which may be very useful for the people working in social sciences (www.ssrc.org).
4.23 Welsh Journals Online
Free online, searchable, access to a selection of 19th, 20th and 21st century Welsh and Wales-related journals
held at The National Library of Wales and partner institutions. These materials cover a very wide range of subject areas, including humanities, social sciences, science and technology (http://welshjournals.llgc.org.uk).
An American site giving access to thousands of free electronic books, poems, articles, short stories and plays. It also includes study guides, dictionaries, biographies, religious texts and popular non-fiction
4.25 Google Books
With Google Book Search, you can quickly search the full text of a book, from the first word on the first page to the last word in the final chapter (www.books.google.com).
4.26 UC Press e-Books Collection
More than 300 free electronic editions published by eScholarship Editions, mainly in the humanities, religion,history,literature,arts and social sciences
Academic OneFile is the premier source for peer-reviewed, full-text articles from the world’s leading journals and reference sources. Access about 12,878 academic titles and keep adding. Titles are from numerous of prestigious publishers and content mostly from CINAHL, JSTOR, PscyINFO, MLA, BIOSIS and more
4.28Black Rose Books is an important non-profit alternative book publisher of non-fiction books in the social sciences and the humanities (http://blackrosebooks.net).
5. MAJOR INDIAN SOCIAL SCIENCE PUBLISHERS
5.1 Manohar Publishers was established in 1969 and publishes good number of books in Social Science and allied subjects. In addition to its own publications, it supplies publications from different Indian publishers on a wide variety of subjects. It has more than 30,000 current and out-of-print titles and select back-files of scholarly journals (http://www.manoharbooks.com).
5.2 Concept Publishing was established in 1974 and is widely acknowledged for finest academic publishing in the most promising areas of humanities and social scientific research. Currently they have over 2900 titles in their collection. It also brings out treatises in collaboration with well-established national and international organisations and research institutions like the Centre for Social and Economic Change, Xavier Centre of Historical Research, LBS National Academy of Administration, Institute of Social Sciences, Indian Council of Social Science Research and others (http://www.conceptpub.com/servlet/Home).
5.3 Rawat Publications is one of the leading independent publishing houses in the Indian subcontinent with focused academic publishing in Social Sciences and Humanities. They have over 1500 published titles specializing in sociology, anthropology, women studies, political science, geography, environment, literature and economics, etc. (http://www.rawatbooks.com).
5.4 Orient Blackswan (formerly Orient Longman India, commonly referred to as Orient Longman), is one of India’s best known publishing houses established in 1948. It has a big network with 13 offices coupled with a distribution network of over 1500 booksellers and has a large collection of books in social sciences and humanities (www.orientblackswan.com).
5.5 Academic Foundation is a major publishing house with large number of publications in Social Sciences and has now adopted the ‘electronic publishing’ route as additional and complimentary to the conventional channels (http://www.academicfoundation.com).
5.6 Gyan Bookshas come a long way, with over 2500 titles published so far with main interest in women studies, sociology, indology, anthropology, tribal studies, tourism, psychology, etc. (http://www.gyanbooks.com).
5.7 EPW Research Foundation(EPWRF) was set up in January 1993 to mark the 25th anniversary of the formation of the Sameeksha Trust and conducts research on financial and macro-economic issues in India. It publishes weekly very important Indian journal known as Economic & Political Weekly, covering different aspects of Social Sciences (http://www.epwrf.res.in/).
5.8 Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR)
The ICSSR was established in the year of 1969 by the Government of India to promote research in social sciences in the country. It supports a network of 27 ICSSR research institutes and brings out lot of literature in social sciences which is quite useful for the faculty, students and others. The ICSSR initiated, soon after its inception in the late 1960s, a series of surveys of research in different social science disciplines. That was the first major attempt to document the history and growth of social sciences in the country. Covering the disciplines; Economics, Geography, Political Science, Public Administration, Psychology, Sociology & Social Anthropology and Social Work, this massive exercise resulted into publication of 25 volumes. Apart from providing the academic community a useful reference material, and an intellectual history of the various disciplines. Over the years, the programme of surveys of research has somehow lost its momentum with the result that the continuity has suffered. The ICSSR decided to give fresh impetus to this programme by initiating the next round of surveys covering six discipline with additions of Education. These surveys updated the developments in these disciplines from the year 2002 onwards and are very rich source of information in the discipline (www.icssr.org)
5.9 National Social Science Documentation Centre (NASSDOC)
NASSDOC is a constituent unit of the Indian Council of Social Science Research. The primary objective of the NASSDOC is to provide library and information support services to social science researchers. It is considered to be one of the largest repositories of bibliographical databases in the area of social sciences and also brings out some documents and reports which may be quite useful for the readers (http://icssr-nassdoc.blogspot.in).
It provides a platform for research students to deposit their Ph.D. theses and make it available to the entire scholarly community in open access. The repository has the ability to capture, index, store, disseminate and preserve ETDs submitted by the researchers and currently has over 11,183 full text Ph.D. theses from 149 universities (http://shodhganga.inflibnet.ac.in).
5.11 eGYANKOSH from IGNOU
It hosts the important e-contents and e-learning material published by the Indira Gandhi National Open University, New Delhi (www.egyankosh.ac.in).
It is a database/platform of vast collection of interdisciplinary Indian Journals and Research Publications with sufficient coverage of social sciences and humanities.
Thus it can be concluded that there are various categories of publishers in the area of social sciences. At present most of the prominent publishers are releasing print version of their books. Traditional social science libraries acquire print versions of books and also subscribe to electronic databases containing full texts of journals.