Centre for the History of the Book

Professor Alistair McCleery

Professor Alistair McCleery is Director of the Scottish Centre for the Book at Edinburgh Napier University.

Professor Alistair McCleery

  • Scottish Centre for the Book
  • Edinburgh Napier University

Contact details

Professor Alistair McCleery is Director of the Scottish Centre for the Book at Edinburgh Napier University. The Centre carries out work that informs policy related to authorship, reading and publishing. Through that work it increases our knowledge of the economic, social and cultural dimensions of the word in its printed and electronic forms. Its projects also create resources that are at the disposal of the business and scholarly communities. It engages with a range of groups drawn from the wider civil society through a diversity of events and publications. It seeks to establish itself as the preferred partner for a number of key agencies and institutions, particularly but not exclusively in projects that contribute to the revenue generation capabilities of the Centre. In doing so, the Scottish Centre for the Book participates in the strategic priorities of government at Holyrood and at Westminster in the development of the Creative Industries as a key component of the knowledge economy.

The taught Masters in Publishing programme within the Centre at Edinburgh Napier was the first to receive accreditation from Creative Skillset, the industry skills body for the Creative Industries. It remains the only publishing course to be accredited by the PPA (Periodical Publishers Association), the industry body for the UK magazine sector. The Centre contains a dynamic group of PhD students whose work focuses on aspects of ‘small-nation publishing’, a term originally coined and defined by Professor McCleery.

Professor McCleery has published much work on the history of the publishing trade as well as on its contemporary prospects. He was jointly responsible for the 2004 Scottish Arts Council report on the Strategic Future of Scottish Publishing. Professor McCleery is the author of over 120 refereed articles and book chapters as well as some 15 books. His co-authored Introduction to Book History has been translated into several languages including Chinese and Spanish. He is the author of the chapter on Publishing in the forthcoming Cambridge University Press Companion to the History of the Book and co-author of the Publishing section of the forthcoming Cambridge History of the Book in Britain volume 7. He was founding Chair of the UK Association for Publishing Education and sat on the Executive Committee of its international equivalent. He has also been a member of a number of national bodies involved in the development of publishing and writing, including first Chair of the Universities Committee on Scottish Literature.