Last year, Jasper Simons became APA’s executive publisher, charged with managing APA’s
largest business unit and identifying and
developing new opportunities to support
APA and psychology. He was promoted
to the position after overseeing APA’s
PsycINFO and other specialty databases
such as Psyc TESTS.
The Monitor asked Simons about his
plans in the new position.
How do you plan to enhance APA’s
The publishing program is one of unique
strength as it is embedded within APA
and operates alongside its members with
hundreds of psychologists producing
scholarly content through our journals and books programs.
With the support of APA’s Publications and Communications
Board, we continually adapt to changing publishing practices,
the shifting needs of our readers and the developments in the
field. Disseminating scientific knowledge requires constant
adaptation. A good example is our thesaurus, which allows for
pinpoint searching across our databases. A few months ago, we
updated the thesaurus with 400 new terms, including “assertive
community treatment” and “restorative justice.”
What does the next wave of success for APA’s
publishing program look like to you?
We will be working to innovate our current products and
develop new research tools in the academic and higher
education spaces. We know that our members and the broader
community rely on our PsycINFO and related databases to stay
ahead of developments in the behavioral sciences. We want to
make sure that we not only focus on the content by working
with the world’s leading authors and editors, but also on the
technology that allows for easy consumption and exploration
of that content. So we are looking at ways we can strengthen the
underlying technology and the user interfaces in the near future.
What is your long-term vision for
In recent decades, we have seen a
sharp increase in scholarly research in
psychology and related disciplines. User
needs and expectations have also changed
rapidly as technology has proliferated
across personal and professional
settings. It is important that APA’s
publishing program stays ahead of these
developments. APA is identifying the
priorities we need to set to ensure that we
achieve success in that context.
What are some notable publishing
successes that APA has already
achieved this year?
One key accomplishment has been the
indexing of the four millionth record into PsycINFO — the
seminal database of scholarly literature covering the behavioral
PsycINFO is the most respected database in the behavioral
sciences. The feedback from our subscribers is consistent about
We’re also delighted by the rapid growth we’ve seen in
the number of subscribers to APA’s Psyc TESTS, the world’s
leading database on psychological tests and measurements.
And we’re excited about the upcoming launch of APA Style
CENTRAL, a Web-based application designed to improve
students’ research and writing skills and help them gain
mastery in APA Style.
What else do you want APA members to know?
The publishing program is working to ensure that APA
continues to serve as the principal provider of scholarly
psychological content for all communities. We need to serve
the clinical, research and educational communities as well as
continue to attract the best editors and authors in psychology
and in the behavioral sciences. Luckily, we have the best staff
and a great organization to assist us with that. n
Five questions for APA’s