Mapping of University Presses in India:
Pattern of Knowledge Production and
Dissemination
Anup Kumar Das
Jawaharlal Nehru ...
 Modern university system in India initiated during the British colonial rule with the
establishment of three major unive...
 These universities had covered eastern, western and southern regions of India,
including some parts of undivided India i...
The colleges produced learned actors or supporters of
Bengal Renaissance movement include:
Fort William College, 1800
S...
Knowledge Production and Dissemination During
British Colonial Rule
The First Printing Press in Eastern India introduced ...
Target Audiences
Global
• Asiatic studies and Asian studies have global audience, global impact and global
network of rese...
Important Academic Presses in India
Established During the British
Colonial Rule
(and still in existence)
Visva Bharati Pu...
Visva Bharati Publishing (VBGV)
 VB University was established by Noble Laureate Rabindra Nath Tagore in
1921 in Shantini...
Distribution of Tagore Works and Other Monographs
Published by VBGV
Type of Publications Number
Books of Notation of Tagor...
Distribution of Books in Different Segments Published
by VBGV
The Asiatic Society, Kolkata
 The Asiatic Society was established by Sir William Jones in 1784 in Kolkata
with patronage ...
Recent Publishing Activities of the Asiatic Society
Year No. of Titles Published
2003 17
2004 17
2005 10
2006 9
2007 11
20...
Calcutta University Press
 University of Calcutta was first modern university in Indian
subcontinent established by the B...
Language-wise Distribution of Books published by CUP
Indian Institute of Advanced Studies (IIAS) Publications
 IIAS was established at Shimla on 20th October 1965 as an advan...
Recent Publishing Activities of IIAS
Year No. of Titles Published
2003 8
2004 15
2005 4
2006 9
2007 2
2008 1
2009 7
2010 1...
Project of History of Indian Science, Philosophy and
Culture (PHISPC)
 A Central government funded project, launched in t...
Other Important Academic Presses in India
 Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR), established in 1972
 Indian Cou...
Name Website List of
Available
Books in Web
Catalogue
Book
Description
Availability
of ISBN
Co-
publishing
Third-party E-
...
Knowledge Dissemination and Use of Online Tools
 Indian university presses are not very technology-savvy
 Very low onlin...
Concluding Remarks
 ICT-enabled knowledge dissemination is a key to achieving professional excellence in
functionalities ...
Thank You
http://anupkumardas.blogspot.in
Mapping of University Presses in India: Pattern of Knowledge Production and Dissemination
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Mapping of University Presses in India: Pattern of Knowledge Production and Dissemination

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Das, AK (2015). Mapping of University Presses in India: Pattern of Knowledge Production and Dissemination. Annals of Library and Information Studies, 62(2), 57-67. http://nopr.niscair.res.in/bitstream/123456789/31960/1/ALIS%2062%282%29%2057-67.pdf

Presented at International Conference on Framing Asian Studies: Geopolitics, Institutions and Networks; 18-20 November 2013; at IIAS, Leiden, Netherlands.
Abstract: Academic presses in India have long standing in production of knowledge and knowledge dissemination to worldwide learned communities. Century-old universities in India, which were started during colonial period, had established their own university presses to publish research monographs and other publications, for engaging with an extended scholarly community, and outreaching to general audience of educated citizens. Some of these university presses in India are now becoming extinct as university authorities find them non-functional or dead entity with no possibility of resource mobilization. However, few universities and academic institutions are still maintaining their university presses. The advanced studies institutions in India, such as Asiatic Society of Calcutta, Indian Institute of Advanced Study of Shimla, have very-rich experience of academic publishing. They have created a space for mutual learning through their prestigious fellowship programmes and postdoctoral research studies. Their interdisciplinary, trans-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary approaches have been appreciated by worldwide learned communities. Fusion and handholding of academic disciplines have created an environment of mutual learning, benefiting researchers understanding others’ disciplines. In recent time, we also see the death of university presses in India. Many university presses were shut down that implicate low interest of academic communities in sustaining this model of knowledge production. Some university presses only publish text-books for their undergraduate or postgraduate students. A declining trend in publishing new monographs is recorded. Low technology-penetration, particularly ICT, has made them virtually non-visible in the cyberspace. This constructs a disconnect with worldwide academic communities. On the other hand, some sustaining academic presses have embraced ICT tools for outreaching wider academic communities through cyberspace with their new academic titles. They also collaborate with established commercial publishers exploring co-publishing option. New collaborations have helped in regaining confidence of best academic minds in publishing their books through these age-old not-for-profit academic presses. This paper narrates present status of university presses in India, and how they are integrated with their prestigious fellowship programmes as knowledge dissemination channel.

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Mapping of University Presses in India: Pattern of Knowledge Production and Dissemination

  1. 1. Mapping of University Presses in India: Pattern of Knowledge Production and Dissemination Anup Kumar Das Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India Presented in Conference on Framing Asian Studies: Geopolitics, Institutions and Networks 18-20 November 2013 at IIAS, Leiden, Netherlands
  2. 2.  Modern university system in India initiated during the British colonial rule with the establishment of three major universities in three important parts of Indian subcontinent, namely in Calcutta, Bombay and Madras.  Each one was established as a multidisciplinary and secular western style university.  University of Calcutta, established on 24 January 1857, became the first modern university in South Asia.  University of Bombay incorporated on 18 July 1857.  University of Madras incorporated on 5 September 1857.  Incidentally, the year 1857 is better known for India’s first struggle for independence or Indian Mutiny (also called the Great Rebellion of India, the Revolt of 1857, the Uprising of 1857 or the Sepoy Mutiny), from the British colonial ruler – the East India Company.  British colonial rule helped expansion of these universities with affiliated colleges across the country.  Many affiliated colleges were established by the European Christian Missionaries as well as colonial ruler. Introduction
  3. 3.  These universities had covered eastern, western and southern regions of India, including some parts of undivided India in Pakistan and Bangladesh.  Gradually, these universities became the centres for higher learning and tertiary education in the country.  They were primarily engaged producing educated workforce for many government functionalities, including leadership as required in the bureaucracy, legislation, judiciary, industry, education, politics, and national and provincial government.  Knowledge production became part of the processes of higher education.  With modern and secular education, the country saw the emergence of a learned, enlightened and educated new generation of youths.  Many of them became key actors in socio-cultural and religious reform movements in Bengal and other parts of the country.  The Bengal Renaissance started in the nineteenth century and continued till early twentieth century in undivided India's Bengal province.  European scholars based in India and attached with the Asiatic Society and other learned institutions also supported Bengal’s reform movements. Introduction
  4. 4. The colleges produced learned actors or supporters of Bengal Renaissance movement include: Fort William College, 1800 Serampore College, 1818 Hindu College, 1817 (rechristened Presidency College in 1855) Sanskrit College, 1824 Scottish Church College, 1830 (as General Assembly's Institution/ Duff College) St. Xavier's College, Calcutta, 1860 Introduction
  5. 5. Knowledge Production and Dissemination During British Colonial Rule The First Printing Press in Eastern India introduced in Serampore named “the Serampore Mission Press” in 1800 by William Carey, William Ward and other British Baptist missionaries. The Asiatic Society, established in 1784, influenced academic knowledge production in the country. Knowledge produced out of academic discourses and academic inquiries were usually published by academic presses or university presses, where the authors were attached with.
  6. 6. Target Audiences Global • Asiatic studies and Asian studies have global audience, global impact and global network of researchers. • Subjects concerned are: Man, Nature, Biodiversity (Flora and Fauna), Cultural Diversity, Linguistics, South Asian Literature, Anthropology, Oriental Religions, and other scholarships within the geographical limits of the Asian continent. National/ Regional • Discourses of national/ regional importance. • Discourses written in national languages and written for non-academic audiences. • Translation and interpretation of important literature into different national languages. Local • Discourses in local languages and/ on vernacular literature. • Translation and interpretation of classical literature in local languages.
  7. 7. Important Academic Presses in India Established During the British Colonial Rule (and still in existence) Visva Bharati Publishing The Asiatic Society, Kolkata Calcutta University Press Established After Independence Indian Institute of Advanced Studies (IIAS) Project of History of Indian Science, Philosophy and Culture (PHISPC) ICPR, ICHR, TERI Press, NISCAIR, etc.
  8. 8. Visva Bharati Publishing (VBGV)  VB University was established by Noble Laureate Rabindra Nath Tagore in 1921 in Shantiniketan.  An experimental university for embracing nature and creativity in pursuit of advancement of knowledge and universal understanding.  Shantiniketan offers a heaven of peace and serenity away from the bustle of city of Calcutta.  Tagore won Noble Prize in Literature in 1913 for his poetical work Gitanjali – Song Offerings. 2013 marks as centenary of the Prize Tagore awarded.  Tagore became the first non-European winner of Literature Noble Prize.  He utilized his Noble Prize money to establish VB and its various teaching departments.  VB Publishing made an attempt to support an educational system out of royalties Tagore received from his literary works, music and sales revenues.  In 1991 VBGV got extension of copyright coverage from 50 years to 60 years only to protect Tagore’s copyrights given to VB.  The new Copyright became applicable to all rights holders.
  9. 9. Distribution of Tagore Works and Other Monographs Published by VBGV Type of Publications Number Books of Notation of Tagore Songs (Svarabitan) 67 Books of Poems and Songs by Tagore (Kabita O Gaan) 56 Books of Collected Works by Tagore (Rabindra Rachanabali) 51 Books of Essays by Tagore (Prabandha) 44 Books of Prose and Dramas by Tagore (Gadya Natya) 29 Text Books by Tagore 24 Books of Letters by Tagore (Patrabali) 22 Books of Novels by Tagore (Upanyas) 14 Books of Dance Dramas by Tagore (Natya Kavya) 8 Books of Stories by Tagore (Galpa) 5 Books of Paintings by Tagore 2 English Books and Translation of Tagore Works 22 Total Number of Books Written by Tagore 344 Other Books in Tagoreana 55 Other English Books 24 Total Number of Currently Available Books 423 Source: VBGV Website http://vbgv.in
  10. 10. Distribution of Books in Different Segments Published by VBGV
  11. 11. The Asiatic Society, Kolkata  The Asiatic Society was established by Sir William Jones in 1784 in Kolkata with patronage of the British colonial ruler the East India Company.  Founder members of the Asiatic Society were drawn from the eminent orientalists, anthropologists, oriental linguists and other scholars concerning man and nature within the geographical limits of the Asian continent.  The Asiatic Society was closely associated with the Bengal Renaissance and became publishing partner of many actors of socio-cultural and religious reform movements in Bengal.  The Transactions of the Asiatic Society was first publication of TAS, published in 1788 titled “Asiatick Researches” or the “Transactions of the Society instituted in Bengal, for inquiring into the history and antiquities, the arts, sciences, and literature of Asia”.  Subsequently, four more volumes of “Asiatick Researches” published in 1790, 1793, 1795 and 1797 respectively that got high acceptance amongst the scholars of Asian studies.  “Asiatick Researches” became immensely popular amongst orientalists in Europe, Asia and other places and got translated into many European languages.
  12. 12. Recent Publishing Activities of the Asiatic Society Year No. of Titles Published 2003 17 2004 17 2005 10 2006 9 2007 11 2008 16 2009 13 2010 18 2011 13 2012 6 Total in last ten years (2003-2012) 130 Published Before 2003 159 Total Available Titles 289 Source: Catalogue of Available Publications, February 2012
  13. 13. Calcutta University Press  University of Calcutta was first modern university in Indian subcontinent established by the British colonial government in 1857.  Calcutta University Press (CUP) was established following role model of the Oxford University Press.  CUP was the first of this kind in Indian university system for outreaching outcomes of academic research and knowledge production to a larger audience beyond its physical boundaries.  Contributed immensely by publishing works of contemporary relevance.  Published annotated translated works from Sanskrit, Pali and Persian literature into English and Bengali languages.  It has published books in different disciplines of natural sciences, social sciences and humanities.
  14. 14. Language-wise Distribution of Books published by CUP
  15. 15. Indian Institute of Advanced Studies (IIAS) Publications  IIAS was established at Shimla on 20th October 1965 as an advanced research centre in the interdisciplinary and cross-disciplinary areas of humanities and social sciences.  It is an autonomous research body under by the Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD), Government of India.  In 1991, IIAS became a UGC Inter University Centre for Humanities and Social Sciences (IUCHSS).  In 2013, IIAS has established the ‘Tagore Centre for the Study of Culture and Civilization’ to mark 150th Birth Anniversary of Rabindra Nath Tagore.  In the same year, IIAS jointly with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have established another centre within IIAS premises named ‘International Centre for Human Development’ (ICHD).  IIAS runs most prestigious fellowship programme of the country in the areas of humanities, social sciences and natural sciences.  Outcomes of scholars’ fellowship works released by IIAS Press or jointly with any commercial publishers.  IIAS raises a substantial amount from sales revenue and royalties that is being utilized for cross-subsidizing different academic programmes in the institute.
  16. 16. Recent Publishing Activities of IIAS Year No. of Titles Published 2003 8 2004 15 2005 4 2006 9 2007 2 2008 1 2009 7 2010 14 2011 9 2012 7 Total in last ten years (2003-2012) 76 2013 (partial) 5 Forthcoming Books (2013-14) 16 Published Before 2003 189 Total Available Titles 286 Authored Monographs 219 Edited Books 67 Source: Catalogue of IIAS Publications, 2013
  17. 17. Project of History of Indian Science, Philosophy and Culture (PHISPC)  A Central government funded project, launched in the year 1990 under the aegis of Indian Council of Philosophical Research (ICPR).  The basic objective of this project is to “undertaking inter-disciplinary study so that inter-connection between Science, Philosophy and Culture as developed in the long history of Indian civilization, could be brought out in detail”.  Project partners include: Centre for Studies in Civilizations (CSC), Department of Science and Technology, Planning Commission, and Ministry of HRD.  Since 1997, PHISPC was officially transferred to CSC.  In this project, so far, about 101 individual books have been produced that include 15 monographs and 86 discrete parts out of 17 volumes.  Each volume has on an average 5 parts.  PHISPC also has a sub-project containing Series named as “Consciousness, Science, Society, Value and Yoga” (CONSSVAY).  Eminent Indian scholars from relevant disciplines were engaged in contributing chapters and editing different parts and volumes of this Project.
  18. 18. Other Important Academic Presses in India  Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR), established in 1972  Indian Council of Philosophical Research (ICPR), established in 1977  TERI Press, subsidiary of The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), established in 1974 and TERI University.  National Institute of Science Communication and Information Resources (NISCAIR), an CSIR institution established in 1952.  All of them have substantive research fellowship awards  Knowledge production as an outcome of scholars’ fellowship works and other academic discourses  First-two have co-publishing partners, chosen from commercial publishers.
  19. 19. Name Website List of Available Books in Web Catalogue Book Description Availability of ISBN Co- publishing Third-party E- commerce IIAS, Shimla http://www.iias.org/p-list- publication.html Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes VBGV http://vbgv.in Yes No Yes No No The Asiatic Society http://www.asiaticsocietycal.c om/publications/index.htm Yes No Not Available No Yes Calcutta University Press http://www.caluniv.ac.in/univ publication/univ%20press.ht m Yes No Not Available No No PHISPC www.csc- india.in/publication.html Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes ICHR www.ichrindia.org/publicatio ns.html Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes ICPR www.icpr.in/publications.html Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes TERI Press http://bookstore.teriin.org Yes Yes Yes No Yes NISCAIR http://www.niscair.res.in/Scie nceCommunication/Scholarly Books/scholarlybooks.htm Yes Yes Yes No No Knowledge Dissemination and Use of Online Tools
  20. 20. Knowledge Dissemination and Use of Online Tools  Indian university presses are not very technology-savvy  Very low online marketing and promotional strategies  Knowledge products are mostly invisible in their websites or third-party websites or e-bookstores  Key bibliographic information are missing from their own websites  Awareness raising tools on knowledge products and how to get published are not available  Use of social networking sites are very negligible
  21. 21. Concluding Remarks  ICT-enabled knowledge dissemination is a key to achieving professional excellence in functionalities of more successful university presses across the world.  They even come with innovative ways in reaching out to new audiences and encouraging existing clienteles to engage with contents they consume.  Social media presence is one of the major marketing do’s in recent times.  A declining trend in publishing new monographs is also recorded.  Indian universities classified as “University with Potential for Excellence” by the UGC have started new university presses to disseminate research results emanated from their collaborative and fundamental research projects.  E.g., Jadavpur University Press (JU Press, http://jupress.wordpress.com),  Jawaharlal Nehru University Press (JNU Press)  Existing university presses should gradually make them visible in the cyberspace and should also engage with worldwide academic communities using Web 2.0 tools and social media sites.  Knowledge networking with creators and users of knowledge should also take place in virtual cyberspace for better consumption of knowledge resources produced by the academic presses in India.
  22. 22. Thank You http://anupkumardas.blogspot.in

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