Policy Press celebrates 20 years of publishing with a purpose

Alison ShawPOPJ4048_Anniversary_Logo_Circular_WhiteToday we are celebrating 20 years of publishing work that we hope makes a difference.

When I started Policy Press it was in a basement in a University of Bristol department with 2.5 staff and a specific aim to ‘publish research to inform policy’. Little did I think then that we would be here now with 21 staff, award-winning books, and working with leading authors across social science disciplines.

We may have moved beyond the ‘policy’ specialism in our name but some things have not changed. We remain a not-for-profit press with a social mission: publishing critical thinking to highlight social issues, advance debates and promote change – in essence ‘publishing with a purpose’.


We are also marking our 20th birthday today by launching our rebrand. After 20 years we decided it was time to enter a new phase with a more sophisticated logo and brand design.

POP_Master_logo_RGBYou will see our new ‘double P’ logo and a rebrand of all our external materials. We decided to keep the Policy Press blue as a central element of our brand. We hope you like it!

In addition to the new logo in a few weeks our new website will be released. It has a fresh new look, more varied ways of browsing our books and better functionality for promotions and purchasing books.

We’ve got some great new content and offers coming up so do watch out for our next newsletter and pass on the message to anyone you think will be interested to sign up to our newsletter to receive significant savings on all our products.


Talking of celebrating, we are of course absolutely delighted to have been shortlisted last week for the IPG Frankfurt Book Fair Academic and Professional Publisher of the Year 2016 alongside Bloomsbury Academic, Sage Publishing and Berghahn Books.

The judges commented on our publishing a range of important, influential and well-reviewed books and how we really punch above our weight.

In putting information together for the award I had time to reflect on what we had achieved in 2015 which I’d like to share with you. We published 120 books, 7 journals and 6 contract products in print and digital for library/institutional and direct customers, whilst maintaining an active backlist of 900 titles.

Two of our books gained the prestigious American Library Association Choice Outstanding Academic Title of the Year (and that was 2 out of 25 titles chosen alongside Piketty’s Capital in the 21st Century).

During the year, we also launched our first app free with the second edition of a leading textbook The Short Guide to Social Policy, we established our PP Shorts, publishing in 12 weeks to increase impact, our PP Bytes including one book Revisiting Moral Panics that is available in 18 versions (print and digital, whole and chunked) and we were proud to work with the Social Policy Association to do a freemium version of In Defence of Welfare.

Policy Press was created to make a positive difference to society, not just as an academic end in itself and definitely not to support shareholders. As we move into our 21st year I look back proudly at all that has been achieved by our wonderful team from those tiny beginnings. It is really nice we have a view now too!

5 Responses to “Policy Press celebrates 20 years of publishing with a purpose”

  1. 1 Bil Silburn February 25, 2016 at 12:42 pm

    Dear Ali and all your colleagues! Congratulations on reaching this milestone. It is now 14 years since PP become the publisher of Benefits, now the Journal of Poverty and Social justice. Like PP itself the journal has gone from strength to strength, fortified by the wise (and tactful) advice of Julia Mortimer. I look forward to another exciting 20 years!

    Bill Silburn

    • 2 Alison Shaw February 29, 2016 at 1:15 pm

      Thanks Bill that is wonderful to hear. It is amazing to think all that time has gone by. I remember all those discussions very clearly and thanks so much for your continuing support.

  1. 1 IPG Meet the Member: Policy Press | The Policy Press Blog Trackback on February 29, 2016 at 1:02 pm
  2. 2 “Unbelievably proud and stunned!” Winning the Independent Academic and Professional Publisher of the Year 2016 | The Policy Press Blog Trackback on March 7, 2016 at 2:51 pm
  3. 3 Policy Press 20th anniversary – interview with the original ‘dream team’ | The Policy Press Blog Trackback on June 22, 2016 at 9:30 am

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