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Presentation Details


All Dressed Up ...: Editors Stake Out their Future in the Knowledge Economy

Renée Otmar.

Along the brand-new speedway that is the knowledge economy, editors stand at the intersection between the commercial and the cultural imperatives of this unique industry. With every new project editors become mediators in a debate that hasn't even been had—at least not with their participation.

Digitisation has revolutionised every aspect of publishing. Along with that revolution has come a push by publishers for editors to move away from the traditional, linear production process (author-publisher-editor-designer-typesetter … bookseller) to one that is a series of collaborations with these and other professionals. This, in turn, has forced editors to cross boundaries and take on roles as diverse as design, typesetting/layout, pre-press, production management, copy writing, publicity and marketing, to name a few. And they continue to be under pressure to develop additional skills and expertise in order to re-shape the publishing process. Meanwhile, publishers have rubbed their hands together at the enormous potential for cost savings, and have blamed these increasing pressures on editors on technological change.

But rather than continue to be styled as passive lineworkers swept along in the maelstrom, editors have been making moves to protect their traditional skills. In publishing their Standards for Editing Practice, Australian editors have drawn a line in the sand. The challenge is for publishers, and other sectors of the industry, to understand, acknowledge and support these benchmarks through training, professional development and remuneration.


Renée Otmar  (Australia)

Society of Editors (Victoria) Inc.

Renée Otmar is the current president and an honorary life member of the Society of Editors (Victoria). She represents Victoria on the Council of Australian Societies of Editors (CASE), having been instrumental in its establishiment in 1998. She has extensive experience as an editor, senior editor, managing editor and project manager, both in-house and freelance.

  • Editors
  • Training and Professional Development
  • Publishing Process
  • Remuneration
  • Technological Change

(30 min Conference Paper, English)