May 9, 2017 | Nicholas Barclay, SPIB Editor

Publishing a special issue as a book (SPIB)

A SPIB is a special issue of a journal which is republished as a hardback monograph with new preliminary pages and an index. Routledge launched this program in 2004 and at present, the majority of books published are in the social science, humanities, and behavioural science sectors.

If you have a special issue that you think could be published as part of this program, please contact your Managing Editor and they will ask you to submit a proposal.


Submitting a proposal

The SPIB proposal form is a document used to communicate the content of the book to our books marketing department and, from them, to potential buyers. It gives you the opportunity to help us market your book effectively and maximize sales. The form should be completed by the special issue editor or the academic editor of the journal. The form has a default of two editors for a given project, but we can accept up to four/five editors if a large team was responsible for the special issue.



Special issue books are marketed in a similar way to Routledge’s monographs. They will be advertised on our website, through e-campaigns, and our multiple catalogues.  We can produce promotional flyers for the editors to distribute amongst interested contacts, and at any events which the editors are attending.



There is a minimum page count of 116pp, as anything lower than this may result in binding problems. The abstracts are reproduced as published in the journal issue, and the index will be prepared by T&F.

All SPIBs note in multiple places that the content originated as a journal issue. On the half title page, a tagline will cite the special issue of the journal as the SPIB’s original source. For example, “This book was published as a special issue of ….” We also include a citation information page in every SPIB, asking readers to cite the original journal issue, rather than the book, and giving the information to do so.

Initially SPIBs are published in hardback only. We then release a paperback and eBook version approximately 18 months after hardback publication, with the eBook being priced for the retail market.


Third Party Images

Many journal issues contain images or photos for which copyright is owned by a third party. In these situations, we require written permission from the copyright holder in order to use the images in the book edition. The SPIB editors will be able to discuss the details of this with you on a case by case basis.



Can I insert new material? 

We prefer the book to have the same balance of articles as the special issue so we cannot accept new material.

What happens to the proposal once it is submitted?

The proposal will go to the SPIB team who will decide whether the issue is suitable for the program. Approval will be based on the market potential for the book and relevance to our existing book program.

Are there ways in which we can purchase a large number of copies for our colleagues?

We sometimes create separate paperback editions of hardback books for private sale to authors or organizations affiliated with authors. We can make a quantity of paperbacks – usually not less than 150 copies and with an approximate value of £3,000 – available to people and organizations for whom the hardbacks are prohibitively expensive. This can be discussed in more depth with the SPIB editors.


Contact details

Lydia de Cruz, Editor for: Area Studies (Asian Studies & Middle East Studies), Built Environment, Geography, Environment and SustainabilityDevelopment Studies, Law, Politics & International Relations, Security Studies, Reference & Information ScienceSports and LeisureTourism, Hospitality and Events.


Nick Barclay, Editor for: Arts, Humanities, Media and Communication Studies, Museum and Heritage Studies, Language & Literature, Sociology, Criminology, Health and Social Care, Behavioral Sciences, Economics, Finance, Business & Industry, Education.


Jess Harrison, Editorial Assistant (all subject areas)


Published: May 9, 2017 | Author: Nicholas Barclay, SPIB Editor | Category: Front page, Managing my journal, Raising the profile of my journal | Tagged with: