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Creating and submitting your IOP ebook proposal

Preparing an ebook proposal

At IOP Publishing, we want to take your ebook idea from conception to reality. We are here to guide you every step of the way.

A well-designed ebook proposal is an effective tool to convey why the ebook you intend to write will make an impact in the scientific community. Your proposal should provide an overview of the ebook, including a technical description, intended readership, approach, features, and the overall aim and scope. We have a proposal form, designed to enable authors to provide a full description of the intended work and facilitate the reviewing and assessment process.

There are various reviews throughout the assessment and publishing process including at the proposal and draft manuscript stages,  all of which serve as independent critical steps in publishing a successful ebook.

Reviewers will be reading your proposal to identify strengths and weaknesses of the proposed project. It is therefore important your proposal describes the intended ebook and its market clearly. Some of the most important aspects reviewers are asked to comment on include:

  • Has the author properly assessed a need for this ebook and addressed it with quality, clarity, and organization of the material presented?
  • What is the technical level of this ebook?
  • Is the author’s coverage of the topic adequate?
  • What are strengths of the proposed ebook? What are weaknesses of this proposed ebook and how can we improve and strengthen this work?
  • Is the author qualified to write this ebook?
  • Is the author aware of any competing books and made clear how their ebook will differentiate itself from the others?

Technical description

While you are preparing your ebook proposal, it is important to communicate exactly what your ebook will do for the reader. After you have clearly identified the market and audience, try to express a broad overview of the ebook’s features, the purpose of the ebook, and what the reader will learn by reading your ebook. Consider the ebook’s approach, coverage, and organization and how these aspects demonstrate its value.

Key features

Communicating and highlighting the key features of your ebook throughout your proposal is critical. What makes your ebook a valuable resource? Perhaps you’re using a simplified approach to an otherwise difficult subject area, or you have included extensive tables and figures, software code, worked examples or case studies. If your ebook has textbook potential, consider including chapter summaries, appendices, or end-of-chapter problems with a solutions manual. Well thought-out features can make a dramatic impact on the final product.


Identifying competition is essential. Not only will we better determine and understand the market for your ebook, but you will also have the opportunity to discuss what distinguishes your ebook from the rest. How your ebook differs from the existing books in the area will be a focal point in our marketing and distribution strategy for your title.


Your proposal will be assessed by our editorial staff and also by independent subject specialists from around the world to gain insight on the content and structure of your publication on a global level. Feedback from reviewers and readers is used not only to assess the quality of proposal or manuscript, but to provide constructive feedback to allow IOP to work with you to develop and maximize the potential of your ebook.

New editions and updates

It is important we maintain current book content for the scientific community. Minor revisions and extensions can be accommodated through updates to the published version of the book. Please contact your editor if you have suggestions for updates to your book.

Larger extensions and revisions are best published through new editions; these typically involve a significant editorial revision or update, typically a with minimum of 15% new material. Your editor may contact you to discuss ideas for updates or new editions, but if you have interest in preparing a revision of your book, please contact your editor so they are able to determine if it is the appropriate time to begin the revision process. We may seek feedback from readers of the present edition to help with formulating the new edition.

As you write the revision plan, consider the new or updated content including new sections and chapters that would benefit the book. It is also important to consider what content, if any, is now considered obsolete and should be removed.

Please keep in mind you will be required to obtain permission for all figures in the new edition which you did not originally create for the ebook. This applies unless you cleared permission to reuse the figure in ‘all editions’ of the book when you first obtained permission.

Submitting your ebook proposal

You can submit your complete ebook proposal, tentative outline, and brief biography or CV to, or alternatively direct to the relevant Commissioning Editor specializing in your field. If you have any sample materials, please include those as well. While a sample chapter is not required, it will help us and the referees become better acquainted with content representing your publication.

Please remember your ebook proposal and sample materials will be held in complete confidentiality. We greatly appreciate our authors and editors, and have the utmost respect for their contributions to our publishing program and the scientific community.

Why publish your ebook with IOP Publishing?

IOP ebooks is an award-winning book programme that brings together innovative digital publishing with leading voices in scientific, technical, engineering and medical (STEM) research to create the essential collection of books for a digital world.

Centred around e-publication, our books programme allows authors and readers to benefit from cutting edge digital publishing capabilities, rapid publication times, and enhanced reader experience as standard that users have come to expect from our online publishing platform. With our book and journal production being XML driven, we are able to offer authors the opportunity to publish content in new and exciting ways with interactivity and user customisation at the heart of this.

By choosing to publish with us, your book will become part of a collection that will play an essential role in communicating STEM research of the highest quality. We are able to offer all our authors true global exposure, with ebooks being hosted on our integrated, device dynamic platform IOPscience.

Through our journal portfolio we have built strong ties and presence in the scientific community. We have established partnerships with some of the leading societies and are proud to be working with publishers, Morgan & Claypool, American Astronomical Society, Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine, and the Biophysical Society in our books programme thus far.

Some key features of the IOP ebooks programme:

  • No DRM: designed specifically for electronic delivery, IOP ebooks allows DRM-free simultaneous access for all users
  • Fully integrated platform: book and journal content in one place on IOPscience.
  • E-reader compatibility: books and chapters are published in HTML, ePub3, PDF, and MOBI (Kindle) formats for maximum reader flexibility
  • Rapid publication times: books will be published within 12 weeks of acceptance of final manuscript
  • Multimedia and interactive content: becomes part of the book rather than an additional aspect. Additionally files such as codes or data sets can also be embedded in the work.
  • Full-colour print: as standard for author copies and print on demand
  • Free unlimited access for all readers: at the point of use for those at purchasing institutions
  • Flexibility: we can make updates to the books after publication.
  • Books can range in length from as little as 50 pages up to several hundred pages.

What support will I receive throughout the process of my ebook being published?

Our dedicated and friendly team of commissioning editors, marketers, designers, and production editors will guide you through each step of the process, from submitting your initial proposal and draft, through to publishing and promoting your completed ebook. These web pages also hold large amounts of support materials that will help you manage your ebook submission with us. And if this isn’t enough, we also have a dedicated ebooks customer service team to manage any other enquiries you might have! Take a look at some of our most frequently asked questions.


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