“The Rubicon Election of 2015″

The Institute for the Humanities at SFU present Award-winning author, Michael Harris as he lectures on the consequences of the re-election of Stephen Harper.
Monday, October 5, 7:00pm–9:00pm, 1410–1430 Segal Centre, SFU Harbour Centre


A graduate of York University and a Woodrow Wilson Scholar, Michael Harris began his career in journalism at CBC television where he became the host of The Harris Report, an investigative and current affairs show. He worked for the Globe and Mail as Atlantic Bureau Chief and later as a senior parliamentary correspondent based in the Ottawa Bureau. He broke the Donald Marshall story while with the Globe.

Michael was founding publisher and editor-in-chief of The Sunday Express, the newspaper that uncovered the story of the abuse of boys at Mount Cashel orphanage, and exposed the Sprung Greenhouse fiasco that cost Newfoundland $30 million. He later became Executive Director of News and Current Affairs at the Newfoundland Broadcasting Corporation, an affiliate of CTV. While with NBC he wrote and produced two award winning documentaries: Unholy Orders was shown on the CTV and PBS networks and won a silver medal for the best news documentary at the New York Festivals. Vanishing Point, about the collapse of the Atlantic cod stocks, won a silver Canpro award.

After a period as National Affairs Columnist for the Sun News Service, he joined CFRA radio (BellMedia) 2000 – 2012 to host Michael Harris Live. Party of One: Stephen Harper and Canada’s Radical Makeover, his book about the Harper government was published by Penguin in the fall of 2014 and debuted as a number one best seller. Michael is currently national columnist for ipolitics.ca. He has written nine books; and has received several awards for journalism including a Radio and TV news director’s award, the Center for Investigative Journalism Award, and two Michener Awards (honourable mention).

Justice Denied: The Law Versus Donald Marshall, led to the Royal Commission on Marshall’s wrongful conviction. Unholy Orders: the Tragedy at Mount Cashel, won Book of the Year from the Foundation for the Advancement of Canadian Letters, and helped expose similar abuses in the US, Australia, and most recently Ireland. Finally, after twenty-five years, in 2014 the Christian Brothers apologized to the children they had abused. Rare Ambition: the Crosbies of Newfoundland, was FACL Book of the Year and APBA Booksellers Choice Award as well as TORGI Talking Book of the Year. The Prodigal Husband: the Tragedy of Helmuth and Hanna Buxbaum, won the Arthur Ellis Award for the best true crime book in Canada. Three of Michael’s books have been made into movies, including The Judas Kiss: The Undercover Life of Patrick Kelly, which became the basis of an Alliance Atlantis movie starring Paul Gross. (Michael played a cameo role as a TV talk show host in the movie.) Lament for an Ocean: The Collapse of the Atlantic Cod Fishery was short listed for the Donner prize for best book on Canadian Public policy.

Michael’s work has sparked four commissions of inquiry and he was named to the Task Force on the Reform of Correctional Services in Ontario, after his book Con Game: The Truth about Canada’s Prisons was published. He has also written magazine articles, several television screenplays, and a children’s book called A Forest for Christmas.

Michael has been a judge for the Governor General Awards for non-fiction as well as for publishing grants and the National Magazine Awards. He has hosted The Great Canadian Debate on the CTV network show Sunday Edition, as well as the series Cold War and Literati on PBS; and has made guest appearances on Oprah and Donahue to discuss his books.

Michael has given numerous keynote addresses including to the Dalhousie Law School and the National Association of Police Chiefs. He holds the Confederation medal and the Queen Elizabeth Golden Jubilee Commemorative medal. In the fall of 2009 he assumed the Irving Chair in Journalism at St. Thomas University, and broadcast his radio show live from the university. Michael was awarded the degree of Doctor of Laws (honoris causa) by Memorial University at their Fall 2009 Convocation for what the university describes as his “unceasing pursuit of justice for the less fortunate among us.”

Like, Tweet, Read

Like, Tweet, Read: Exploratory Analyses of Social Media Data as an Indicator for Readership Behaviour in the Newspaper and Periodicals Industries


By Tilman Queitsch


MPub Project Report, 2014


Magazine and newspaper publishers benefit from readership studies conducted by large research organizations. They help publishing professionals keep track of readers’ habits and their competitors’ success. In most areas, surveys of readers and Internet users generate the findings that the publishing industry is interested in. In recent years, market research has developed a new approach combining such survey data with social media data. This approach offers new ways to analyze how social media audiences can be segmented, how readers choose between different media, how they use mobile devices, and how magazines or newspapers compare to their competitors.

Tackling each of these research scenarios, this report summarizes a series of analyses conducted at Vision Critical, a multinational market research technology company. By using basic functions in R, a freely available statistical programming language, the analyses show how this approach enriches results in a way that is useful for publishers.

Read the report:

Read more

Turning The Page in B.C. Book Publishing

In case you don’t regularly read BC Business,  the above article from their online site starts with, “With e-books on the rise and a digital revolution happening all around us, what does the future look like for B.C.’s book publishers?”  The July 2015 issue in print (available at Belzberg Library) covers Page Two’s Trena White and Jesse Finkelstein, MPub alumnae.

Accessing publishing industry reports


In addition to reports from StatsCan, BookNet and OMDC there are many other industry reports for publishing. Alas, they are often fabulously expensive.  Below are some resources for the SFU community available free of charge via the SFU Library:

  • Passport GMID has a selection of Industry overviews such as “Publishing of Books in Canada: ISIC 2211″ (2013)
  • Business Source Complete contain reports as well as full-text article. Sample report: “MarketLine Industry Profile: Books in Canada” (2014)
  • MINT Global contains thousands of industry and company reports.  Select “Search industry research” to search the Industry: publishing.  Sample profile: “Publishing in Canada” (2014)


Publicity & Marketing Assistant at Raincoast

 July, 2015


Publicity & Marketing Assistant at Raincoast


Raincoast Books is looking for a full-time Publicity & Marketing Assistant to be based in our Richmond office. They will report to the VP Marketing.


The Publicity & Marketing Assistant will:


  • Work directly with the Marketing and Publicity Managers on weekly assignments including, processing invoices, editing our digital catalogue and helping with publicity and social campaigns, online newsletters and channel marketing materials.
  • Assist with mailings, prize submissions and department administration.


The successful candidate will possess superior written and verbal skills and excellent copyediting skills. InDesign skills are an asset.


Raincoast Book Distribution Ltd, based Metro Vancouver, is one of the largest distributors of books in Canada. We have been in business for more than 30 years, selling, marketing and distributing our clients’ book and gift product to retailers, wholesalers and institutions across the country.


We regret that we can only acknowledge applications from candidates selected for interviews. No phones calls or agencies, please.


Candidates should send their résumé and cover letter by July 22 to:


Jamie Broadhurst

Vice-President of Marketing

Raincoast Books



Publishing@SFU – Tenure-Track Appointment

July 2015

The Publishing Program at Simon Fraser University invites applications for a tenure-track position at the rank of Assistant or Associate Professor – commensurate with experience – commencing September 1, 2016.

We are seeking an individual with an established research and teaching record in one or more of: Canadian publishing history and policy, scholarly communications, the digital humanities, information science or media studies as it intersects with publishing. The preferred candidate will be engaged in interdisciplinary research and teaching in at least one of the following areas: Canadian and/or international publishing studies, public policy, history of publishing, history of the book, scholarly communications, media studies. We are looking for a scholar who can work closely with and augment our closely knit, interdisciplinary faculty. Read more

World Premiere of air india (redacted) combines music, poetry, and visual projections


air india [redacted] explores issues of silence and longing in the 30th year since the bombing of Air India Flight 182 off the coast of Ireland, Canada’s worst act of aviation terror.

November 6, 7, 10, and 11th at 8:00 pm, Doors at 7:30 pm
Matinee performance: November 8 at 2:00 pm, Doors at 1:30 pm
Tickets: $39 general / $19 student

On the occasion of SFU’s 50th Anniversary and Turning Point Ensemble’s 10th anniversary, Turning Point Ensemble and SFU Woodward’s Cultural Programs are proud to co-present this world premiere of music, theatre, poetry and projections.

Five years in the making, air india [redacted] showcases the skilled musicianship of the Ensemble with the incredible vocal talents of international rising star and TED fellow, soprano Tharanga Goonetilleke, and award winning Canadian singers, Daniel Cabena, countertenor and Alexander Dobson, baritone.

Irish composer Jürgen Simpson creates evocative music based on his extensive Air India Flight 182 research and inspired by Vancouver poet Renée Sarojini Saklikar‘s award winning book of poetry children of air india, un/authorized exhibits and interjections (Nightwood Editions, 2013).

Over the last thirty years, despite a massive judicial inquiry into the investigation of the bombing and one of Canada’s longest and most expensive criminal trials with the acquittal of the accused, the Flight 182 saga is under-represented in our national psyche. On June 23, 1985, the lives lost tallied at 329 men, women and children, most were Canadian.

Audience are invited to join in this artistic experience that will give testimony to silence and longing created by Flight 182. This is a sensory experience created for those who have and will always be part of this story. For further details, see sfuwoodwards.ca

Composer – Jürgen Simpson; Music Director – Owen Underhill; Poet – Renée Sarojini Saklikar; Director – Tom Creed; Media Artist – John Galvin; Tharanga Goonetilleke, soprano; Daniel Cabena, countertenor; Alexander Dobson, baritone.

Indian Summer Festival: 5×15

Publishing@SFU is pleased to be a partner once again for Vancouver’s Indian Summer Festival.

The ISW 5×15 evening — Saturday, July 18 at 7pm at The Imperial, 319 Main Street — promises to be an exciting and memorable event.

Five brilliant speakers, fifteen minutes each. Magic. 5×15 is a speakers series that originated in London, with the simple but brilliant format of five speakers, speaking for fifteen minutes each, on any topic they are truly passionate about. The only rules are, the talks should be unscripted, and no more (or less) than fifteen minutes. The series now happens on a monthly basis in London, New York and Milan. 5×15’s second Indian Summer Edition brings the series back to Vancouver, with five brilliant local and international storytellers.


“5×15’s packed soirées feel like an evening of offline, communal surfing, it’s due as much to the eclectic menu of speakers as to the short time allotted to each…”
– The New York Times

Tickets available online.


CISP to evaluate Mellon Foundation’s scholarly communications initiative

The Canadian Institute for Studies in Publishing (CISP) is excited to announce a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation which will fund an evaluation of the Foundation’s scholarly communications initiative. The project will be led by John Maxwell, director of the CISP and head of the Publishing program at Simon Fraser University.

In 2014, the Mellon Foundation announced that it would award funding to support digital publishing in the humanities. The awards would encourage the widest possible dissemination of scholarship by making publications interactive, high quality, and financially sustainable. The Mellon Foundation asked grantees to envision how they could better connect to students and support the humanities. “These are not questions about a publishing ‘crisis’ or about ‘open access,’” Mellon Sr program officer Don Waters said in a 2014 talk. “They are about the opportunities to shape knowledge formation and interpretation and dissemination to emerging needs and media.”

Mellon has awarded close to ten million dollars in funding to fifteen institutions since 2014. The grants tackle different aspects of publishing, including editing, clearing rights, embedding datasets and multimedia, peer reviewing, and preserving. The proposals involve all three branches of institutions: presses, libraries, and faculty. They range from creating new workflows, to building new platforms for online publishing, to researching and implementing new business models. “The resulting proposals vary widely–in keeping with the broad aims of this initiative,” Maxwell said. “Given the scope of the challenge and opportunity at hand – nothing short of realigning scholarly communication in the humanities – this breadth is indeed appropriate and welcome.”

The Mellon initiative asks presses to partner with another organization, such as a library or another press, encouraging a culture of collaboration. “The Foundation has with this initiative effectively constituted a community of practice, and a network, around the advancement and realignment of scholarly communications,” Maxwell said. “The opportunity at hand, then, is to catalyze this community into something greater than the sum of its individual agendas.” Maxwell aims to help inform the grantees about each others’ initiatives and to better connect them with each other.

The CISP is part of the Publishing program at Simon Fraser University, the only graduate publishing program in Canada. The Institute, founded in the late 1980s, has been an interdisciplinary centre for research on the publishing industry and its practices. In recent years, the Institute has evolved scholarly communications through a series of initiatives aimed at establishing a social-science & humanities journal publishing infrastructure in Canada, through its involvement with the Public Knowledge Project (PKP; also based at SFU), and in its recent involvement in the Implementing New Knowledge Environments (INKE) research partnership in Canada.