The Office of Faculty Development & Diversity is committed to supporting faculty publishing endeavors and will host events examining various aspects of the publishing process throughout the academic year.

FD&D Events

Tradebooks, Monographs, Textbooks: How to Publish and Thrive in a Changing World 2015

Do you want to write something different, bigger, more ambitious than journal articles? Are you writing a book, or thinking about it? You know that publishing has changed even in just the last ten years. What do you need to know in 2015 (and 2016) to write and publish a book successfully?

Listen to the panel address the following questions on SoundCloud:

  • How do I get found?
  • What is a trade book?
  • How do you find the right publisher?
  • What does the publishing timeline look like?

Full Event Video:


Jill Kneerim, Managing Director, Kneerim & Williams Literary Agency
Gita Manaktala, Editorial Director, MIT Press
Sharmila Sen, Executive Editor-at-Large, Harvard University Press

Behind the Scenes at Houghton Library 2015

Getting Your Voice Into Popular Media 2013

If you’ve ever thought about writing an op-ed piece for a major newspaper, had an idea piece for a popular periodical or about speaking on radio, join leading news editors and prolific faculty colleagues for a lively panel discussion.


Caroline Elkins, Professor of History and African and African American Studies, Harvard University
Edward Glaeser, Fred and Eleanor Glimp Professor of Economics, Harvard University
Trish Hall, Op-Ed Editor, The New York Times
Amanda Katz, Deputy Editor of the Ideas section, The Boston Globe
Ann Marie Lipinski, Curator, Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard

Stylish Academic Writing 2013


Pick up any guide to effective writing, and what will you find? Probably some version of the same advice that Strunk and White offered in the 1950s: engage your reader’s attention through examples, illustrations, and anecdotes; use clear, precise language to express complex ideas; avoid obfuscating jargon; vary your vocabulary, sentence length, and frames of reference; favor active verbs and concrete nouns; write with conviction, passion, and verve. Pick up a peer-reviewed journal in just about any academic discipline, and what will you find? Impersonal, stodgy, jargon-laden prose that ignores or defies most if not all of the principles listed above.

In this workshop, panelists presented a smorgasbord of evidence-based strategies – from the perspectives of writing coach, author, and editor -- for colleagues who aspire to write more confidently, stylishly, engagingly and daringly.

Listen to the panel address the following on SoundCloud:

  • 3 characteristics of stylish writing
  • Concreteness in abstract ideas
  • Courage in writing
  • Editor as human being
  • Why does your book matter?

Event Videos

View the full playlist on YouTube.

Introductory Comments

Steven Pinker

Helen Sword

Elizabeth Knoll


Steven Pinker, Harvard College Professor and Johnstone Family Professor, Department of Psychology, Harvard University
Elizabeth Knoll, Executive Editor-at-Large, Harvard University Press
Featuring: Helen Sword, Professor of Academic Practice, The University of Auckland, New Zealand

Managing Your Online Reputation 2012

Reputation management is a major component of online life, as anyone who has ever searched for oneself or a colleague can attest. Traffic from search engines and social media are key drivers of the need for identity and online profile management. This session showcased the experiences of current Harvard faculty who addressed ways in which academics can maximize online exposure for themselves and their scholarly work. 

Full Event Video:


Moderated by Perry Hewitt, Chief Digital Officer, Harvard University
Alyssa Goodman, Professor of Astronomy, Harvard University
Gary King, Albert J. Weatherhead III University Professor, Harvard University
Misiek Piskorski, Associate Professor of Business Administration, Harvard University

Writing Books for Readers beyond Academe 2012

In the world of writing and publishing, “academic” is too often shorthand for – as one editor puts it – “lifeless prose, cumbersome to read, filled with unnecessary complication, often disdainful and stridently obscure in style and tone.”

This session was intended for faculty members who aspire to write for the general educated reader, and those seeking advice on how to engage trade publishers and agents. Attendees heard from industry professionals and learned from the experience of members of the Harvard faculty who have succeeded as trade book authors.

Event Videos

View the full playlist on YouTube.

Introductory Comments

Dan Gilbert

Betsy Lerner

Angela von der Lippe

Luke Menand


Dan Gilbert, Professor of Psychology at Harvard University
Luke Menand, Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor of English at Harvard University
Betsy Lerner, Literary Agent at Dunlow, Carlson, and Lerner
Angela von der Lippe, Vice President and senior editor at W.W. Norton

Publish Your Book 2012

This panel on book publishing engaged faculty members from across the University in a discussion with publishing executives. It addressed some of the common questions scholars have about contracts, literary agents, and the promotional process for scholarly books. It also touched on how the environment for book publishing has changed in recent years as a result of new technologies and market forces.


Michele Lamont, Robert I. Goldman Professor of European Studies at Harvard University
Robert Darnton, Carl H. Pforzheimer University Professor and Director of the Harvard University Library
Elizabeth Knoll, Senior Editor for the Behavioral Sciences, Education, and Law at Harvard University Press
Gita Manaktala, Editorial Director of the MIT Press
Kate Wittenberg, ITHAKA Project Director for Client and Partnership Development
Susan Rabiner, Co-Founder of the Susan Rabiner Literary Agency

From Dissertation to Book 2010

Are you considering whether and how to publish your dissertation? Are you already writing your first book? Do you have questions about working with publishers?

Senior scholars and publishing executives joined faculty members for lively discussion and practical advice. Panelists included Professor Erez Manela of Harvard’s Department of History; Elizabeth Knoll, Senior Editor for the Behavioral Sciences and Law at Harvard University Press; Peter Der Manuelian, Philip J. King Professor of Egyptology, and Philip Laughlin, Senior Acquisitions Editor in Philosophy & Cognitive Science, The MIT Press.

Event Videos

View full video playlist on YouTube

Introductory Remarks

Philip Laughlin

Erez Manela

Peter der Manuelian


Elizabeth Knoll, Senior Editor in the Behavioral Sciences, Education, and Law at the Harvard University Press
Philip Laughlin, Senior Acquisitions Editor for Philosophy and Cognitive Science, The MIT Press
Erez Manela, Professor of History, Harvard University
Peter Der Manuelian, Philip J. King Professor of Egyptology, Harvard University

Harvard University Press