JOB: Editor in Chief, Syracuse University Press

Editor in Chief


With the creation of a new editor-in-chief position, Syracuse University Press, a unit of Syracuse University Library, intends to forge new and stronger relationships with SU faculty, programs, departments, and schools, thereby strengthening its position as an essential and integral component of University research and scholarship.   In reinforcing these campus connections, the editor-in-chief will identify new opportunities to demonstrate the mission of university press publishing: disseminating the University’s scholarship as well as research from around the world.  The editor-in-chief will play a critical role in establishing the Press as a leader in innovative use of new publishing modalities and technologies.


The Editor-in-Chief manages the acquisitions department and functions of the Syracuse University Press, including planning a publishing program consistent with the goals of the Press, interacting with series editors and SU faculty, supervising acquisitions staff, serving as an acquisitions editor, and re-establishing the Editorial Advisory Board. In addition, the editor-in-chief will actively participate in the overall management of the Press and interact frequently with colleagues at the SU Library and on the campus.

An adept manager and an effective acquisitions editor, the ideal candidate will be an inspiring leader who can facilitate teamwork and shared vision among a three person staff while also acquiring 8-10 new books/projects annually.  In addition, the editor-in-chief will:
•    Solicit, acquire, and review prospective manuscripts for publication by SU Press; ascertain market interest in subject matter to determine if interest warrants publication;
•    Develop and implement policies and procedures for the acquisition, handling, and transmittal of manuscripts;  provide information about manuscripts to production, marketing, business, and other Press departments and administration;
•    Prepare acquisition proposals based on positive reviews of manuscripts and estimated sales potential; present recommendations to Editorial Advisory Board for approval; follow up on questions and suggestions by the Board.
•    Represent the acquisitions department in discussions with other Press managers and administrators.
•    Serve as a liaison between the Press and SU Library subject specialists and between the Press and SU faculty.
•    Participate in Press-wide planning efforts and efforts to analyze performance of the Press’s editorial list.
•    Maintain contact with other university presses, authors, and reviewers to identify trends; generate ideas for book projects; and solicit authors to develop projects.
•    Maintain liaison with authors to discuss changes in approved manuscripts and ensure revisions are made adequately in response to reviewer recommendations.
•    Prepare and review contracts, modifying as appropriate, for signature by author and SU Comptroller.
•    Work collaboratively with staff in Editorial and Production, and Marketing to develop appropriate publishing plans for new projects and to ensure high professional standards in editing, production, and promotion within budgetary and scheduling constraints.
•    Identify opportunities for collaboration for new product possibilities and other synergies.

The editor-in-chief will guide the acquisitions process through the following activities:

•    Help acquisitions editors screen projects and determine those best suited for recommendation to the Editorial Projects Review Board (EPRB).
•    Guide acquisitions editors toward signing on works that are in conformance with Press plans and goals that reflect required quality and financial standards.
•    Provide guidance to acquisitions editors in contract negotiations, peer review, competitive bidding, sales forecasting, and budgeting, and provide preliminary approval for titles that will be presented to EPRB.
•    Ensure that appropriate training is provided to all Editorial Assistants and Acquisitions.

As an acquiring editor with responsibility for signing on 8-10 new titles per year, the editor-in-chief will:
•    Actively commission new authors and new books in assigned genres and fields that meet the needs of the scholarly community while meeting or exceeding internal financial thresholds.
•    Develop and continually refresh an understanding of the scholarship and general interest literature in assigned fields.
•    Use exhibit attendance and campus travel to extend network of contacts, advisors, and authors.
•    Engage with authors and others necessary (translators, developmental editors) to develop manuscripts for publication.
•    Travel 15-20% of the work schedule.

Minimum Qualifications:

•    8+ years of academic or professional publishing experience, with at least 3 years of management/supervisory experience and a strong record of team-building.
•    Academic background and experience sufficient to facilitate constructive interaction with scholars, colleagues, and university administration.
•    Acquisitions experience in one or more of the fields in which the Press currently publishes.
•    Budgeting and forecasting experience.
•    Experience with digital and online publishing technologies.
•    Working knowledge of journal publishing.
•    Strong understanding of trends in the publishing industry, including active participation in AAUP.
•    Graduate degree required.  PhD preferred.

Salary & Benefits:

Commensurate with education and experience.
The University’s generous benefits package includes a 10% contribution to TIAA/CREF, health and dental plans, tuition remission, adoption assistance, insurance, and other work/life options and benefits. The University offers a guaranteed mortgage-assistance program in targeted neighborhoods. More information can be found on the Department of Human Resources website at


The Syracuse University Press is a unit of the Syracuse University Library and was founded in 1943. A long-standing member of the Association of American University Presses, SU Press publishes approximately 50 new titles per year and has more than 1,200 titles in print. The Press consistently earns international critical acclaim and attracts award-winning authors of note. Current active publication areas include the Middle East, Peace and Conflict Resolution, Gender and Globalization, Religion and Politics, Jewish Studies, Disability Studies, Irish Studies, Television and Popular Culture, Sports, Native American Studies, and New York State.


To view the complete position description or to apply for this position please log onto
Review of applications begins immediately and the search will remain until November 7, 2011.

Syracuse University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer

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