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C-2-C Project

Creator-to-Consumer in a Digital Age

C-2-C Project Stage 2: January-April 2001

RMIT University and Common Ground successfully completed Stage 2: Market Research and Business Scoping Project in April 2001.

In Stage 2, we identified potential new markets for new book products, which if nurtured with the right ingredients, could place the Australian book production industry at the forefront of innovative publishing solutions in the Asia Pacific specifically, and more broadly, in the international marketplace.

The defining feature of Stage 2 was the highly productive relationship formed between RMIT University and Common Ground, and the manner in which we were able to link the University's resource of research knowledge and expertise with a small and forward thinking commercial operation with an industry network.

Key achievements of the Stage 2 project included:


Bill Cope and Dean Mason conducted the extensive field work required to complete the industry scoping. This included the following key elements:

  • Development of a comprehensive list of organisations covering publishers, printers, book-sellers, libraries, IT and related professionals who are actively involved with creating new markets or working with new publishing technologies for books.
  • Development of guidelines for consulting each organisation, and gathering the relevant data.
  • Formal consultations with 73 key leaders amongst these industry players, representing 58 organisations.
  • An assessment of new market opportunities arising from digital publishing processes based on a literature and internet-based review of international developments.

Complementing the research conducted by Common Ground, a number of RMIT academics were also engaged to conduct research on specific aspects of the book production industry. The result of this work is embodied in the chapters of the project report. This work included:

  1. Robert Black, Manager, Enterprise Training and International Projects (RMIT Printing). Subject: Print Technology in Transition. Paper extended and reworked by Bill Cope (co-author).
  2. Dr Karin Geiselhart, Post Doctoral Research Fellow in Electronic Commerce at RMIT. Subject: The Book Now - Creative Destruction and the Rebirth of an Industry.
  3. Assoc. Professor Terry Laidler, Director of the Centre for International Research in Communication and Information Technologies at RMIT. Subject: Does Copyright Have a Digital Future?
  4. Paul Mercieca, Lecturer in Information Management at RMIT University. Subject: Digital Publishing: The Current State of Play.
  5. Professor Michael Singh, Professor of Language and Culture at RMIT University. Subject: Multilingual Applications and Possibilities with Digital Technology.
  6. Helen Smith, Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Education, Language and Community Services at RMIT University. Subject: New Knowledge, New Markets: A Case Study of the Publishing Needs within the VET System.
  7. Stavroula Tsembas, Education Technology Manager, Faculty of Education, Language and Community Services, RMIT University. Subject: Online Possibilities for Books. Co-authored with Bill Cope.
  8. Telstra Home Team, consisting of five PhD students at RMIT University, Craig Bellamy, Peter Burrows, Michael Coburn, Dari Loi, and Linda Wilkins. Subject: Creating a Viable e-Text Market.


Common Ground published the 289 page book 'Creator To Consumer in a Digital Age', launched at an industry forum on the 20 March 2001. In addition to the eight chapters outlined above, four chapters were written by the Common Ground team based on their research, encompassing: market and technology scoping; user interface review; user survey; productivity benchmarks; appraisal of C-2-C system design; identification of market opportunities; and supply chain development opportunities.

A key feature of this work was the collaborative effort made by the fourteen Common Ground and RMIT contributors in producing a single, comprehensive book, and the demonstration in the product itself of the potentials of digital book production technologies.


An all-day industry forum was held at RMIT on 20 March 2001, attended by 80 industry representatives of major players right across the book production supply chain. The primary purpose of the day was to raise awareness throughout the book production industry of the main technology and business issues that were currently emerging, and their impact on enterprises throughout the supply chain. The response from the participants was extremely positive, including a number of suggestions that this kind of dialogue should continue, and be extended.


This website, http://www.C-2-CProject.com, was created to promote the project, the industry forum and from which is possible to purchase the C-2-C books as a d-book (digitally printed) or an e-book (a file to be downloaded).


The material published in the book has been shaped into a training manual for use in RMIT Printing and other industry training programs.


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