Custom publishing: quality, internationality, and impact

Custom publishing at Berkshire means projects that come to us with financial support (grant, subvention, private funding) to cover editorial development, production, distribution, and, as appropriate, marketing and promotion.

We only take on projects fit into our existing subject areas and are clearly of value, even if they has only a small potential audience. We treat these books with the same loving care we bring to titles we originate.

There are two major reasons for bringing a project to us. First is speed. We took our first custom book, Challenge to China, from Word manuscript to finished books in one month! Yes, we know this seems impossible but it really and truly happened. Feel free to ask for the full story.

In a nutshell, this is for authors and organizations who don’t want to wait for years to see print books (and ebooks, of course), but who want the support, oversight and industry reputation of a serious publishing house.

In addition, the nonprofit Barrington Institute is a sister company of Berkshire Publishing Group and may be the appropriate channel for certain projects. The Barrington Institute’s mission is to develop creative and inexpensive (or free) educational materials to help students and citizens understand the challenges we face in the 21st century. As a hybrid social enterprise, we can produce, distribute, and promote publications or digital tools funded by grants and tax-deductible donations.

The Barrington Institute Inc, an independent nonprofit that supports life-long learning initiatives and community-building, is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Your contributions are tax-deductible for income, gift, and estate taxes. Our US EIN is 20-1670260.

Berkshire has developed titles related to China and Asia, and is now expanding into other areas.

Berkshire was responsible for the launch of the SAGE Reference list in 2002-2004, developing a first wave of titles that established the SAGE brand in the academic reference market.


All Berkshire titles are widely distributed, and our major reference has been translated into Chinese – only Encyclopedia Britannica has more published in Chinese. These are some of our international distribution partners.

“A monumental undertaking, [the International Encyclopedia of Women and Sports, edited by Christensen et al.] covers women’s sports worldwide and throughout history … A scholarly resource for public libraries and school at all levels, middle school through college.”

Library Journal, from the book review

“The Encyclopedia of Leadership is a model of a modern reference book … [it] belongs in the personal collection of every person seriously interested in leadership, whether as student, scholar, or practitioner.”

Compass, Kennedy School, Harvard, from the book review

“The call we made in Our Common Future, back in 1987, is even more relevant today. Having a coherent resource like the Encyclopedia of Sustainability, written by experts yet addressed to students and general readers, will support education, enable productive debate, and encourage informed public participation as we join in the effort to transform our common future.”

Gro Harlem Brundtland, Chair of the World Commission on Environment and Development and three-time prime minister of Norway

“Sorting the sum of human endeavors and presenting students with a coherent plan of study is no easy task, but [in creating the Berkshire Encyclopedia of World History] a winning combination of distinguished historians and a seasoned editorial staff has proven more than equal to this massive undertaking.”

John Lawrence, Lawrence Looks at Books

“[Berkshire’s Patterns of Global Terrorism] offers a great service to policy makers, journalists, researchers, and the general public … [It] provides context, coherence, and thorough access.”

Reference & Research Book News, from the book review

“Works like the Berkshire Encyclopedia of Human-Computer Interaction play a valuable role in lending definition to emerging, interdisciplinary fields of study.”

Against the Grain, from the book review

“Take a publisher with a decade of experience in China, add a group of well-known Chinese and Western scholars, pay special attention to details, add 1100 unique photographs, sprinkle in dozens of traditional Chinese proverbs, do it all on recycled, chlorine-free paper, and the end result is [the Berkshire Encyclopedia of Chinaa] sumptuous resource on all things China for the 21st century.”

Library Journal Best Reference, from the book review

“Incredibly, [the Encyclopedia of Community: From the Village to the Virtual World] is the first encyclopedia to focus on community as concept and experience, so stands alone in its field as the one title any library must buy to cover this topic. . .  .  Essential. All readerships.”

CHOICE, from the book review