Category Archives: Publishing

The latest on scholarly publishing.


Citing Libel Fears, Cambridge U. Press Won’t Proceed With Book on Putin

Cambridge University Press has decided not to go forward with the publication of a Miami University professor’s book exploring corruption in Russia, citing fears that the book could become the subject of a libel lawsuit in the British courts, according to The Economist.

In the proposed book, Karen L. Dawisha, a professor of political science and a Russia expert, writes about President Vladimir V. Putin’s alleged links to organized crime. Last month she received a letter from John Haslam, the p…


Another Indian Publisher Pulls Book by U. of Chicago Scholar

[Updated (3/5/2014, 2:15 p.m.) to include a statement from the publisher.]

Another Indian publishing company has withdrawn a book about Hinduism by a University of Chicago scholar, The Times of India reported.

Last month Penguin Books India agreed to withdraw all copies of The Hindus: An Alternative History, a 2009 book by Wendy Doniger, a professor of the history of religions at Chicago. Ms. Doniger’s book had drawn criticism from a nationalist group that said her text misrepresented Hindu trad…


Publishers Withdraw More Than 120 Fake, Computer-Generated Papers

Two academic publishers are removing from their subscription services more than 120 papers that a French researcher found were computer-generated nonsense, Nature News reports.

Sixteen of the papers appeared in publications by Springer, and more than 100 were published by the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers.

The fraudulent papers were identified by Cyril Labbé, a computer scientist at Joseph Fourier University, in Grenoble, France. He developed a way to detect manuscripts produ…


Indian Publisher to Pull U.S. Scholar’s Book on Hinduism After Lawsuit

Penguin Books India has agreed to withdraw and destroy all copies of an American scholar’s book about Hinduism that prompted a legal fight with a nationalist group, The Wall Street Journal reported.

The 2009 book, The Hindus: An Alternative History, was written by Wendy Doniger, a professor of the history of religions at the University of Chicago. It was published by the Indian unit of the New York-based publisher Penguin Random House.

Ms. Doniger’s book drew fire from some conservative Hindus…


Nobelist and Editor of Open-Access Journal Boycotts Top Science Journals

Randy W. Schekman, a professor at the University of California at Berkeley who was one of three winners of this year’s Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, has declared a boycott of top science journals such as Cell, Nature, and Science, The Guardian reported.

Mr. Schekman, who is editor in chief of a competing publication, an open-access journal called eLife, wrote a commentary in The Guardian criticizing the three prominent journals.

He accused the three journals of artificially limiting the…


24 ‘Exceptionally Creative Individuals’ Are Named as MacArthur Fellows of 2013

The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation named on Wednesday 24 recipients of MacArthur Fellowships for 2013, and most of them have current or recent affiliations with universities. The fellowships recognize “exceptionally creative individuals with a track record of achievement,” the foundation said in a news release, and “the potential for even more significant contributions in the future.”

The fellowships carry a stipend that was increased this year to $625,000, paid out over five year…


U. of California Adopts Systemwide Open-Access Policy

The University of California’s Academic Senate has adopted an open-access policy that will make research articles by faculty members on all 10 of the system’s campuses available to the public free of charge.

The move follows years of discussion. In a news release, the Academic Senate said that the policy would make articles available to the public through eScholarship, the university’s open-access repository, in tandem with their publication in scholarly journals. The policy covers as many as 40…


MIT Acted Reasonably in Swartz Case, Says Its Report

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology on Tuesday released the findings of an investigation it had commissioned into its involvement in the prosecution of the open-access activist Aaron H. Swartz, who committed suicide in January. The report says MIT did not “target” Mr. Swartz, who had broken into an campus computer-wiring closet and downloaded millions of scholarly articles from the digital archive JSTOR, nor did it seek his prosecution by federal authorities or oppose a plea bargain.

But b…


Cengage, a Major Publisher, Files for Bankruptcy Protection

Cengage Learning, a major textbook publisher and education company, announced on Tuesday that it had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, as part of what it said was a prearranged restructuring plan to sharply reduce its roughly $5.8-billion in outstanding debt, according to Reuters. Cengage’s move to file for bankruptcy protection had been rumored for weeks, after Michael Hansen, its chief executive, suggested that the company might do so last month.

The company was acquired by a private…