Dougherty selected as director of Princeton University Press

Peter J. Dougherty

Peter J. Dougherty 

Peter J. Dougherty, a 13-year employee of Princeton University Press and a 33-year veteran of the publishing industry, has been named the new director of the Press.

His appointment, effective July 1, was approved March 23 at a meeting of the Press' board of trustees. He will succeed Walter Lippincott, director of the Press since 1986, who plans to retire.

"We sought an individual of broad editorial vision and were fortunate that the field of candidates was rich in such talents. Happily, however, we found Walter Lippincott's successor right here at Princeton," said W. Drake McFeely, chair of the Press' board.

"Peter Dougherty has been instrumental in the Press' success over the past 13 years," he continued. "More than that, his 33 years of experience in publishing affords him a clear vision of how to build on Walter's great achievements. I am delighted that he has agreed to lead the Press into its second century."

McFeely, president and chair of W.W. Norton in New York, co-chaired the search committee with Princeton University Provost Christopher Eisgruber, who added, "Peter Dougherty will be a great leader for the Princeton University Press. He has distinguished himself as a brilliant editor of books about economics, and his list of authors and titles in that field is the envy of every other university press.

"Peter has a subtle appreciation for the kind of books that a university press should publish and he knows how to get them," said Eisgruber, who serves on the Press' board of trustees and chairs the board's executive committee. "He impressed the search committee with his distinctive editorial vision for the Press and by his perceptive insights into management strategy. I very much look forward to working with him to sustain the healthy relationship between the Press and the University. I am confident that he will build magnificently on the wonderful foundation laid by Walter Lippincott's formidable leadership of the Press."

Dougherty joined the Princeton University Press in 1992 as senior economics editor and later was promoted to group publisher for the social sciences. He publishes books in economics, economic sociology, economic history, higher education and public affairs. In addition, he supervises editors in political science and sociology.

The set of books for which he is responsible is considered among the most academically distinguished and financially robust lists to emerge in the past decade in university press publishing. Dougherty's cadre of published authors and editors consists of some of the most noted social scientists in the world, including seven Nobel prize-winning economists. Among the most celebrated books on his Princeton list are: Robert J. Shiller's 2000 international bestseller, "Irrational Exuberance," William G. Bowen and Derek Bok's "The Shape of the River: Long-Term Consequences of Considering Race in College and University Admissions," Linda Babcock and Sara Laschever's "Women Don't Ask: Negotiation and the Gender Divide," Joel Mokyr's "Gifts of Athena: Historical Origins of the Knowledge Economy," Harold Kuhn and Sylvia Nasar's "The Essential John Nash," William G. Bowen and James L. Shulman's "The Game of Life: College Athletics and Educational Values" and Kenneth Pomeranz's "The Great Divergence: China, Europe and the Making of the Modern World Economy."

"I am thrilled and honored to be succeeding Walter Lippincott as director of Princeton University Press, my publishing home, and that of my authors, for these past 13 years," Dougherty said. "I look forward with the greatest enthusiasm to working with my colleagues, our trustees and editorial board, and our authors and advisers both within the Princeton community and around the world to set the standard for international scholarly publishing in the years to come."

A 1971 graduate of LaSalle College, Dougherty began his publishing career as a college textbook salesperson for Harcourt Brace Jovanovich in 1972 and was named sociology editor at Harcourt in 1979. Before coming to Princeton, he served as an editor at McGraw-Hill, W.H. Freeman, St. Martin's Press, Basil Blackwell and The Free Press. A member of the American Economic Association, he also is active in the American Association of University Presses.

Dougherty writes and lectures often about social science publishing and occasionally about economic culture and the culture of economics. His articles have appeared in The Financial Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Chronicle Review of The Chronicle of Higher Education, The Journal of Economic Literature, The Journal of Scholarly Publishing, World Economics, The American Sociologist and elsewhere.

Dougherty's first book, "Who's Afraid of Adam Smith?," was published by John Wiley and Sons in 2002, and has received favorable reviews in The Wall Street Journal and other publications. A paperback edition is due in April 2005.

Princeton University Press, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2005, is one of the country's largest and oldest university presses. The Press publishes some 200 new books in hardcover each year and another 90 paperback reprints. With a goal to disseminate scholarship both within academia and to society at large, the Press produces publications that range across more than 40 disciplines, from art history to ornithology and political science to philosophy.

The Press is an independent publisher with close connections, both formal and informal, to Princeton University. Its five-member editorial board, which makes controlling decisions about which books will bear the Press' imprint, is appointed from the faculty by the president of the University, and nine of the 15 members of the Press' board must have a Princeton University connection.

Note: Dougherty is pronounced DOCK-er-tee.