Course offers strategies to adapt to rapidly changing world of publishing

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Tina Weiner introduces a speaker during last year's Yale Publishing Course.

The Yale Publishing Course (YPC) will hold two sessions this July on the Yale campus: “Leadership Strategies in Magazine and Digital Publishing” (July 15-20) and “Leadership Strategies in Book Publishing” (July 22-27).

This educational experience is designed for mid- to senior-level publishing professionals. Its mission is to provide the participants, who come to New Haven from all over the world, with the knowledge and skills that enable them to be more effective leaders.

Through an intense week of lectures and small group discussions, the program gives participants insights into the challenges facing the industry today, as well as practical information on how to take advantage of new opportunities.

YaleNews talked to Tina C. Weiner, director of the Yale Publishing Course, about these programs.

What are the biggest areas of interest and opportunity in publishing today? How will they be addressed during the course?

The main focus will be on the impact the digital revolution has made on the publishing landscape and how publishers must transform their business models and practices to adapt to the ever-increasing rate of change.

A major focus will be on utilizing advances in technology, especially how to make better use of metadata, how to track useful consumer analytics, and the crucial issue of how to find new streams of revenue. Throughout the week, the issue of how print and digital publications can truly coexist and support each other will be addressed from various perspectives, as well.

Each program will tackle specific issues facing the particular media. For example, the book program will have specific sessions on such issues as author/publisher, publisher/bookseller, and publisher/library relationships; issues of territorial rights; the future of Google ebooks; and the digital workflow in book production.

The magazine and digital publication sessions will address such issues as the question of new realities in advertising; new ways to build community; ways to monetize archives of content and photography; licensing foreign editions; and maximizing the potential of digital editions.

What makes YPC different from other conferences and programs?
It is most definitely not a conference; it is a course, conducted in a classroom setting in which interaction is strongly encouraged and ample time is allowed for Q&A. The size of the class is limited to allow a relationship between the class and the speaker to flourish. The content of the presentations is international in scope, and the make-up of the class is international.

Each week, there will be attendees from about 20 different countries in each session. This enables everyone to gain a broader perspective of the industry worldwide, explore the possibilities in different markets, and form a network of international colleagues.

How do you choose the speakers for YPC?

In two words: very carefully. I look for people who are passionate about the profession, who have track records as innovators, who are experts in the areas I want them to explore, and who love to teach.

Publishers, as a rule, love to talk about the profession; they enjoy the informal atmosphere at YPC and appreciate the desire to learn that the participants bring to the classroom.

In addition to the industry experts, there are several presentations by members of the Yale faculty and community, including the School of Management, the Library, the Law School, and the Yale University Press. This adds a perspective to the program not found in other publishing conferences and events.
What gives YPC its global perspective?
In addition to the presence of participants from outside the United States, the speakers are specifically asked to address international issues and treat the business of publishing as a global enterprise. Many of the speakers’ responsibilities within their companies are international in scope, varying from marketing and editorial to strategic planning and distribution.

Who would gain the most from attending this type of course?

The goal of the course is to provide an opportunity for publishers to think outside their own niche and to learn what others within the publishing world are doing. The aim is to help them advance in their own careers and become more effective in leadership positions.

All areas of publishing are addressed during the week — editorial, finance, marketing, sales, distribution, promotion, publicity, digital, legal, design, and production. Participants vary from publishers, editors and CEOs, to design and marketing directors. Whether they come from independent publishers with a small staff or large publishing houses with hundreds to thousands of employees, the Yale Publishing Course is designed to give them skills they can apply immediately to lead their companies in the future.

Applications are being accepted. Yale alumni receive a 5% discount off tuition.

To apply and for more information, visit the Yale Publishing Course website.

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Shana N. Schneider:, 203-436-5449