SMU to revive its Press

More than a year after it announced it was suspending operations at its well-regarded press, Southern Methodist University has decided it will give the press a second chance at life. In a statement sent to The Chronicle of Higher Education, Provost Paul Ludden confirmed the decision but left the specifics and timetable vague.

“After years of struggling to stay financially viable, SMU Press is evolving in a manner that we believe gives it the best chance to survive as a relevant, sustainable publisher in an evolving publishing world,” Ludden wrote. “We plan to hire a new director for the press who will take a fresh look at the publishing landscape and reinvent the press. We imagine that digital publishing and print-on-demand will figure prominently in any new venture.”

The outcry on- and off-campus over the suspension led Ludden to study the question of whether the press could be made sustainable. Founded in 1937, the press is Texas’s oldest academic publisher and is best known for literary fiction. Its titles have been distributed by Texas A&M University since its demise.

–Adapted from article by Jennifer Howard in The Chronicle of Higher Education, August 10, 2011.