10th Master Class – Europe
Developing leadership and innovation

Network with the leaders of today and the future

Comments from the 2009 Course

'Excellent course. Would recommend.'

''A valuable experience and above all it was great to meet & discuss these issues with colleagues from other publishers'

'Insight and analysis of case studies from leaders the most valuable part of the course. The way their critical thinking works is invaluable to learn.'

Course Director: Richard Balkwill, Course Director, STM Master Class

General overview

The STM Master Class has established itself as a benchmark of exciting and innovative teaching and learning in strategic business skills. The STM Master Class attracts senior and influential speakers from within and outside the publishing industry whose ideas challenge the delegates to tackle today's key publishing issues - achieving innovation, tackling change, evaluating risk, licensing and acquiring intellectual property, managing relationships with key stakeholders, and enhancing brand values.

For the tenth consecutive year, The Master Class is being held in Oxford. Every year feedback from the students has been positive and every year the committee of senior publishers commit to adapting the course to the industry's constantly changing needs.

Who is the course for?

  • Tomorrow's international senior managers in all STM publishing functions: marketing/sales, business development and editorial.
  • Managers will have between three - five years' experience, including some responsibility for managing budgets, resources and staff.

Benefits of participating in the course

  • More confidence in making strategic decisions
  • Original and innovative ideas to manage change - and succeed during the recession
  • A radically different way of looking at the STM market
  • Greater willingness to review models and apply techniques from outside our industry
  • Membership in a growing community of highly motivated and committed former delegates

Preliminary Program



Monday 13 September






STM and publishing in times of recession
Michael Mabe, CEO, STM




Scholarly Publishing and the Open Agenda
Malcolm Read, JISC

Open Access as a concept is now well understood both in the research community and by the scholarly publishing community.  The driver is to disseminate the outputs of research (by which is usually meant papers, monographs etc) to the widest possible community, including society as a whole.  Publication in specialist and expensive journals does not do this.  However this does not obviate the need for peer review and the professional recognition that publication provides.


Open Access is however only one aspect of a broader open movement in research: making research data more openly available has recently become topical, and open research in the form of 'citizen science' and engaging both experts and non-specialists through Web 2.0 tools is becoming popular.  The future of the scholarly publishing industry needs considering in the light of this wider 'open' trend in research and the expectations of society in general towards the ready availability of on-line content: often for free.


At the same time university budgets for libraries, and hence journal acquisition, are becoming very constrained.  The escalating cost of the most popular titles is real cause for concern and not always perceived by university management as good value for money - it is a 'distress purchase' like petrol for your car.  Falling library budgets will lead to the purchase of fewer journals and a concentration on the most heavily used titles.  The smaller publishers must explore more cost-effective production methods such as streamlining the peer review process and e-only publishing.  The bigger publishers will continue to enjoy a near monopoly position eventually forcing research funders and universities to consider more radical approaches to the dissemination of publically funded research and the ways of measuring the impact of individual researchers.


Introduction to Case Study 1


Lunch & group photo




Case Study 1 presentations




Libraries and Information Discovery
Hazel Woodward, Cranfield

How Libraries Intermedia Navigation
Simon Inger, Consultant

Readers navigate to scholarly content via a number of channels including search engines, publisher aggregations, specialist bibliographic resources and peers' bookmarks, but libraries have their space in the competitive arena of 'ideal starting point.' Libraries have invested significantly in technologies that contextualise navigation and provide more sophisticated search than other resources.


Introduction to poker school



Reception and dinner at Eynsham Hall
Guest speaker Simon Waldman, LoveFilm



Tuesday 14 September


Risk assessment and publishing strategy (when cash is short)
Chris Blake
, VC consultant

Why will most people decline a 10GBP bet but many will risk their life savings in starting up their own business? How much information do you need to make a business decision? Why is it so difficult to shut down a failing project? When should you fold a hand in poker and what has poker go to do with business anyway? Chris Blake will look at the psychology of decision making with particular emphasis on how our decisions become constrained when the going gets tough and the additional risks we take when we are losing. He will offer some practical advice for decision makers in corporate environments in difficult markets.




Implementing a Paradigm Shift
James Milne

There is a classic management quote by W. Edwards Deming, 'We do not have to change, because staying in business is not compulsory.'


The STM publishing environment is a highly competitive arena, where normal business strategies and practices apply. We are also faced with considerable external influences, creating quite turbulent market conditions for each organisation to grapple with. Under these conditions, all publishers naturally consider how they should change and adapt. At the same time, the underlying business of validating and disseminating research content in an effective and economically sustainable way needs to be maintained.


Changing a business can take many forms; most often the process, ie. evolutionary rather than revolutionary. We will review how RSC Publishing totally redefined its vision and strategy, how this was implemented, and what the consequences of this paradigm shift was for the organisation.


Introduction to Case Study 2






Case Study 2 presentations




Financial measures: investing for value and maximising return
Ian Metcalfe,

How do accountants evaluate investment options? The impact of discount rates and residual values in the accountants models. How to deal with perceived risk. How accounting policies can influence decision making.


Introduction and initial preparation for debates


Dinner and quiz at Eynsham Hall


Groups return



Wednesday 15 September




Groups prepare for debate




Copyright wars
Cliff Morgan,
Joss Saunders,
Blake Lapthorn




Afternoon groups present debates led by Jim Milne/Graham Hobbs

1:45 - 3:30

Debates 1, 2, 3


Certificates, round-up




Registration Fee

€2600 after 31 July 2010

Registration fee includes course material and meals, but not accommodations.

STM has negotiated special room rates for the course. Please mention you are with the STM group to get the special rate.

  • Sunday Bed & Breakfast rate : 65.00 GBP
    Weekday Bed & Breakfast rate: 90.00 GBP including VAT

Please book directly with Eynsham Hall  +44 (0) 1993 885 200

It is essential that delegates stay at Eynsham Hall because work will continue to late into the evening.

Events Terms and Conditions

Where an event has registration fees, cancellations made in writing up to 30 days before an event are eligible for a 50% refund. No refunds can be made for cancellations received on or after 30 days prior to the event date, however, substitutions may be made free of charge at any time.

Registration fees do not include insurance. Participants are advised to take out adequate personal insurance to cover travel, accommodation, cancellation and personal effects.