Covers of new AGU books
AGU published 11 new books in 2020 across the Earth and space sciences. Credit: AGU

AGU’s books program is adapting and growing with a number of new initiatives designed to improve the quality and expand the reach of our publications. We published a range of new titles across the Earth and space sciences in 2020, many of them aligned with AGU’s new strategic goals.

Successful pilot of open access books

We are delighted to have published our first ever open access books during 2020: Carbon in Earth’s Interior (edited by Craig Manning et al.) and Large Igneous Provinces: A Driver of Global Environmental and Biotic Changes (edited by Richard Ernst et al.).

While open access is a well-established model for publication in journals, books have been slower to transition. However, early data show that individual chapters and the full book PDFs were downloaded and viewed considerably more than what we would see with a standard book available via subscription or purchase. We are working with our publishing partner, Wiley, to develop a sustainable model to make open access a possibility for more book editors who wish to explore that option and have funding available to cover the costs.

Introducing a new Editorial Board

In spring 2020, AGU’s Publications Committee approved a proposal to form an Editorial Board for the books program. Two Editors-in-Chief were appointed – Kate Lajtha from Oregon State University and Andreas Keiling from the University of California, Berkeley – broadly responsible for ‘Earth’ and ‘space’ topics respectively. However, they have assembled an international and diverse team of 11 Editors to cover all disciplines.

The Editorial Board is responsible for suggesting ideas for new books, assessing book proposals, providing editorial advice to book editors and authors, and evaluating completed book manuscripts. We also hope to create more synergy between AGU’s journals and books.

If you have an idea for a new book, they would love to hear from you. We want our books program to reflect the science of all of AGU’s communities and sections. Contact any member of the Editorial Board or email

New books capture the breadth and strategic goals of AGU

Almost a dozen new titles were published in 2020 in the Geophysical Monograph Series, AGU’s flagship book series, now in its seventh decade. As usual, new books span topics across Earth and space science disciplines from Dayside Magnetospheric Interactions and Seismoelectric Exploration: Theory, Experiments, and Applications to Dynamic Magma Evolution and Biogeochemical Cycles: Ecological Drivers and Environmental Impact.

Our books seek to support AGU’s strategic goals. For example, Nitrogen Overload: Environmental Degradation, Ramifications, and Economic Costs presents science to address an important societal challenge; El Niño Southern Oscillation in a Changing Climate embodies international collaboration with 98 leading researchers presenting the latest knowledge in the field; and Iceland: Tectonics, Volcanics, and Glacial Features seeks to make science accessible to non-scientists by presenting a regional guide to the landscape of Iceland that is suitable for novice geologists, tourists, and students, as well as scientists.

These books have also garnered wider recognition. In the Association of American Publishers’ 2021 PROSE Awards, Nitrogen Overload was a finalist in the Environmental Science category and Iceland was a finalist in the Earth Science category.

Accessing our books

Our two open access books (Carbon in Earth’s Interior and Large Igneous Provinces: A Driver of Global Environmental and Biotic Changes) are available for free via Wiley Online Library. For all other books, check with your librarian to see if your institution has a subscription to enable download via Wiley Online Library; if not, please recommend titles to your librarian. Meanwhile, digital and print versions of all our books are able available to purchase on where AGU members receive a 35% discount using the promotional code AGU21.

—Jenny Lunn (; ORCID logo 0000-0002-4731-6876), Director, Publications, AGU


Lunn, J. (2021), Exciting new developments for AGU books program, Eos, 102, Published on 22 February 2021.

Text © 2021. The authors. CC BY-NC-ND 3.0
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