Publishing with a purpose
The book you are planning to write should fit into one of the following broad categories.
Monographs are works of original scholarly research, engaging with other relevant primary and secondary literature. Publication of significant monograph books, that push forward the boundaries of the disciplines in which we publish, is very important to us. Monographs may be considered for publication as hardback only, or as dual edition (paperback and hardback) books dependent on the core audience for the book.
Multi-author or edited works
Edited works should provide a thorough and structured review of a major subject, in which both the chapter topics and the contributors have been carefully selected by the volume editor(s) to ensure that the resulting book is as comprehensive, coherent and integrated a treatment of that subject as possible.
We do not publish conference proceedings, so if you are proposing to edit a book or series arising out of a conference or workshop, it is essential that all chapters are written specifically for the book, that you have selected only the very best contributions from the meeting, and have, where necessary, supplemented these with specially commissioned chapters to ensure that the book or series is fully rounded and cohesive.
A learning resource is usually a textbook written for a student market, whether undergraduate, postgraduate or professional. It must be an essential adjunct to a course and students should be strongly recommended to buy it. Its coverage can be either truly comprehensive or relatively specialised, depending on the type of student or course you have in mind. It may be based on your own teaching, but should be broad enough in its appeal to be suitable for courses other than your own.
It is particularly important for textbooks to consider the needs of the audience and how your book relates to the competition. We also welcome proposals for innovative learning resources such as digital products or textbooks with supplementary digital content.
Policy and practice
We publish policy review and polemic books that aim to challenge policy for, or thinking about, a certain field of policy or practice as well as books aimed at a practice (or training for practice) audience. Such books should be written in an accessible style, as they are likely to be aimed at a broader audience. They must still be academically sound and appropriately referenced. It is important to clearly consider your audience for a book or series in this category and to ask who needs to read it to effect change as a result.
Trade books for the general reader
We publish serious non-fiction social commentary and debate for a wide audience. These high quality books are written by academics, professionals and other experts in an accessible way bringing key issues of social, political and cultural significance to a wide readership. Your book should have an impact: advancing knowledge, raising awareness and/or encouraging social change .The most important aspects of a trade book are that they have a very clear, easy to understand message; they tell a good 'story'; and are written in appealing, non-specialist language.
Our Shorts are between 20-50,000 words and are available as e-books and in print with a shorter production schedule.
We publish two types of Shorts under both Bristol University Press and Policy Press:
Research: books providing the latest cutting-edge or topical research findings (longer than an article but shorter than a monograph) publishing in hardback for an international market with a lower priced eBook which allows for individual purchase;
Insights: books covering issues of wide interest and where a timely intervention is likely to attract substantial media coverage and reach a broad non-specialist audience, these accessibly-written Shorts enable authors to join the debate authoritatively and quickly and are published as low-price paperbacks and eBooks.
Policy Press also publish the following Shorts:
Policy and practice: as part of our commitment to impact and engaging with a wider audience, we also publish ‘policy and practice’ Shorts where there is support with dissemination through Open Access, organisational links, course buy-in or other direct routes to the policy and practice audience.
Written by experts in their fields, these formats provide high quality, peer reviewed content quickly and are available for both personal purchase and for libraries and institutions through the usual channels.
Download a Shorts proposal form, including detailed guidelines, here.
Our COVID-19 Collection showcases our content on this significant global challenge, regardless of specialisms, in order to encourage broader perspectives and collaborations across global and disciplinary boundaries. Find out more.
Social issues regularly arise that need social commentary interventions responding swiftly to events to influence thinking, research, policy and practice. Our new Rapid Responses allow authors to make a timely impact and influence thinking on current affairs. Find out more.