Editorial and Publication Policies

Defining itself in terms of its Imprint and in the goals of its Mission Statement and Guiding Principles, the Clemson University Press is not just a creature of its parent, a national university among many, nor, as a university press, does CUP exist merely to expedite the publication of Clemson scholarship. According to the Association of American University Presses, an academic press

normally reflects in its publishing program the strengths of the institution's faculty, as well as the principal interests of the university and the larger community in which both exist. But it will serve the faculty and the university best by providing an imprint and publishing program comparable in quality to the finest educational institutions in the land. ("What Is a University Press?")

This commitment to quality holds for all "act[s] of publication-whether in books, journals, CD-ROM, or even through a computer network" Elsewhere, the AAUP links high standards to the editorial supervision of a press.

Apart from its business operations, the principal function of a press that requires university judgment and supervision is its publishing policy and program—the kind and quality of books it publishes. Here the customary procedure is to seek editorial advice and final approval of books to be published from a committee of scholars drawn from the faculty. This editorial committee should be balanced in its membership to represent the chief research activities of a university. Clearly the most distinguished and productive scholars of a university are best able to supervise the editorial policies of a press. Since press directors must work with them and have their confidence, directors should have some voice in nominating scholars appointed to editorial committees. (Reciprocal Responsibilities of a University and Its Press)

Also customary and understood is that seeking advice to help a director and his editorial committee to a decision about publishing a book involves a jury of experts, often drawn from the scholarly community beyond the faculty of the university. This will be the normal procedure for CUP, just as it is for all university presses affiliated with AAUP, in dealing with authors in consideration of the proposals and manuscripts that they will bring to the press for possible publication.

The Clemson University Press is a trademark owned by Clemson University. The press program is housed in the Center for Electronic and Digital Publishing (CEDP), an administrative unit in the College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities. The CEDP Director is the Executive Editor of CUP and Chair of the CUP Editorial Advisory Board, with supervisory responsibility for the CEDP Managing Editor and other staff. The CEDP Advisory Board works with the Director/Executive Editor to provide general advice on CEDP's overall publication program, of which CUP is the highest quotient. (That is, the university's trademark is reserved for only that work that meets the high standards established for first-rate scholarship in the fields designated in this charter.) The CEDP/CUP-affiliated journals and college magazine, of course, have their own editorial units, including advisory boards and publication policies, and these are described elsewhere on this website. Also, the responsibilities of the CEDP Director/CUP Executive Editor are articulated in the CEDP charter (see "Administration").