University of Alberta

Acquisitions Editor

University Press

Competition No.  -    A101737650
Closing Date  -    Jan 06, 2019

The Acquisitions Editor (AE) is responsible for soliciting, developing, and acquiring manuscripts, primarily works of scholarship in the social sciences, particularly Anthropology, Sociology, Geography, Political Science, Gender and LGBTQ Studies, and Law. The AE reports to the Director and Publisher and functions as a member of the Press’ management team. All activities of the position must operate within the budgets, policies, procedures, and processes of the Press. The role of AE is to focus on list building and is thus critical to the Press’ publishing program. 

University of Alberta Press is located on the University of Alberta North Campus.  Qualified candidates who are able to work remotely with some travel to the Edmonton, are welcome to apply.

Responsibilities include:

1. Solicits Manuscripts

  • Meets with potential authors at university campuses, scholarly conferences, and in office to discuss new book projects, research trajectories, publishing experiences, and to make a case as to why UAlberta Press is (or is not) the right publishing home for their work.
  • Analyzes new proposals and manuscripts to evaluate scholarly contribution, scale of audience, scope and costs of project, and general fit with UAlberta Press’ publishing program.
  • Reads partial or full manuscripts and discussing with authors ways to improve analytical and editorial quality of work.
  • Identifies appropriate peer reviewers, acquiring readers’ reports, processing paperwork including payment for readers, presentation of materials to the Press Committee, and making recommendations to the Press Committee.

2. Guides and Becomes a Resource to Authors

  • Guides authors in their response to peer reviews and, once manuscripts are approved for publication by the Press Committee, guides authors in revising their manuscripts accordingly with a view to addressing readers’ comments and promoting reader comprehension and developing the best possible book.
  • Works with authors to ensure all necessary permissions are in place and all materials relating to the manuscript are available and at appropriate level of resolution. The Acquisitions Editor must be aware of copyright issues for textual and visual materials, reprography, and digital copies.
  • Solicits foreword and supplementary material as required.

3. Prepares Title Budgets

  • Completes market analysis: examining sales and prices of comparable books to establish reasonable print-run and pricing, in consultation with colleagues.
  • Considers, recommends, and, where appropriate, prepares applications for possible funding sources to assist with the cost of publication for each title acquired, including Awards to Scholarly Publications Program (ASPP).
  • Search out and recommend the possibility of co-publishing arrangements.

4. Participate in Project Planning

  • Consults with the production editor and designer regarding preparation of front matter, editing, format, design, and printing of books.
  • Consults with the marketing department regarding marketing and promotion of books.
  • Ensures complete and accurate data concerning acquisitions is up-to-date in the Press database.

5. Ambassadorial – Promotes and Enhances the Reputation of University of Alberta Press

  • Represents the Press at professional meetings, scholarly conferences, seminars, and other public functions as required.
  • Serves as a public resource formally and informally via lectures and responding to queries.

6. Recommends New Subject Areas and Expand the Press’ Publishing Program

  • Identifies gaps in literature.
  • Identifies potential authors.
  • Identifies areas of strength at the University of Alberta.
  • Approaches authors with manuscript proposals.
  • Invites author submissions.


The position of Acquisitions Editor demands a complex skill set both socially and academically. Typically, the incumbent should have three to five years of book publishing experience (preferably in acquisitions), a graduate education (preferably in the Social Sciences or Humanities), and feel comfortable engaging in an academic environment. A familiarity with engaged scholarship and activist/social justice communities is an asset. The AE must have strong organizational skills and should be able to juggle a multitude of personalities and manuscripts while moving them along to publication. Collegial skills are important to ensure harmonious relationships with Press personnel, reviewers, and authors. Good analytical abilities are highly desired to both assess manuscripts and to find peer reviewers. A familiarity with the overall publishing industry as well as scholarly publishing in Canada is useful in order to be effective. Communication skills are paramount as the AE represents the house to author and the author to the house. Publishing is a business and a good financial lens is important from which to evaluate possible books. Finally, the AE should be both culturally and academically literate in order to be able to recognize a good manuscript, when one presents itself, or to solicit one when the opportunity is ripe.

In accordance with the Administrative and Professional Officer (APO) Agreement, this full-time continuing position offers a comprehensive benefits package found at Faculty & Staff Benefits and annual salary range of $62,475 to $104,123.

When applying please include your resume and the names of three references. 

For further information, please contact Olenka Li at:

How to Apply

Apply Online

Note: Online applications are accepted until midnight Mountain Standard Time of the closing date.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority. If suitable Canadian citizens or permanent residents cannot be found, other individuals will be considered.

The University of Alberta is committed to an equitable, diverse, and inclusive workforce. We welcome applications from all qualified persons. We encourage women; First Nations, Métis and Inuit persons; members of visible minority groups; persons with disabilities; persons of any sexual orientation or gender identity and expression; and all those who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas and the University to apply.