Transformational Change for People and the Planet: Editing 27 Authors
In 2020–2021, Katy and D & O Creative Group provided copyediting and project management for Transformational Change for People and the Planet: Evaluating Environment and Development. This book was produced by the Global Environment Facility Independent Evaluation Office (GEF IEO), led by the book’s editors, Juha I. Uitto, director, and Geeta Batra, chief evaluation officer and deputy director. It was published with open access by Springer in 2021.
On the pressing question of how to achieve transformational change that reconciles development with environmental sustainability, this book addresses the role of evaluation in finding sustainable solutions, applicable to fields including climate change mitigation and adaptation, energy efficiency and renewable energy, natural resources management, and biodiversity conservation. The book drew on presentations at the Third International Conference on Evaluating Environment and Development, held in Prague, Czech Republic, in October 2019. In the first four months following its release in 2022, the book was downloaded more than 47,000 times.
Beginning in May 2020, Katy communicated regularly with the authors of what were eventually 19 chapters plus three section introductions, establishing deadlines, following up on deadlines, delivering edited text for review and revision, and addressing the many other matters that arose throughout the publication process. The authors spanned continents and time zones, and chapters were subject to change – some planned chapters did not materialize, others were added to the book, some required extensive revision, and some had numerous visual elements that needed modification.
Beyond project management and actual text editing, our team’s work included producing tables of acronyms and abbreviations, checking and formatting references, and formatting visual elements for the best possible print reproduction.
Managing a project of this scale was the largest challenge in this lengthy undertaking. I used spreadsheets to track chapter components, editing and proofing stages, author contact information, and communications sent and received. Proactive communication was vital, as was consistency and follow-through with the individual chapter authors, the book’s editors, and contacts at the publisher as we moved through the production process. This was my second book project with the GEF IEO, so I was familiar with the specifics of their style but continued to refer to guidelines as needed.