Rowman and Littlefield International

RLI marks its fourth birthday

Published on Monday 14 Nov 2016

It’s now four years since Sarah Campbell and I sat in a café in London, planning and then announcing what was to become Rowman & Littlefield International – and so I’m delighted to mark another birthday in the life of this company.

It’s a rare treat in life, to start something from scratch, and watch it grow and succeed. RLI started with support and friendship from Rowman & Littlefield in the US, but with a blank canvas as far as its publishing was concerned.  It has been the work of talented editors and authors to shape a list which we believe is having a real impact in its chosen fields of the Humanities and Social Sciences.

We well remember the excitement of the launch of our first two books in September 2013, with authors Sean Gaston and William Watkins, who placed their trust in our fledgling operation.

Since then, we have seen huge growth in our publishing, with our list now comprising hundreds of books. Our publishing bring first-class scholarship from authors based in Europe, Asia and the Americas – and they firmly live up to our vision of high-quality writing, exploring the links between disciplines in a stimulating way.  We are delighted, too, by the publishing partnerships we have with leading think tanks: CEPS, in Brussels, and Policy Network in London.

The response to our list has been marked by fast-growing sales to customers worldwide, and by an ever-growing bank of comments from appreciative reviewers. To have a thoughtful and positive review from Rowan Williams in the New Statesman, on our landmark title The Politics of Virtue, by John Milbank and Adrian Pabst, felt like something of a coming of age for this young company.


We have continued to make great use of technology, publishing all our books simultaneously in print and digital formats (on both sides of the Atlantic at once), and working with our authors to use social media to amplify our reach. We’re always busy on Twitter and Facebook, and we have a growing presence on YouTube, enabling our editorial team to talk in some depth about the shape and development of their lists:



We are grateful for the continuing trust given by our many authors and editors around the world, and to the customers who buy and read our published works. We have had fun over the past four years, and we know that this company now has real momentum – and great plans for 2017.


Oliver Gadsby

11 November 2016