Definition of publish or perish from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

 

publish or perish

 
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; NAmE
 
 
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a phrase used to express the idea that it is important for teachers in colleges and universities to publish books, etc. about their research, and that if they fail to do so it will have a bad effect on their career. The idea is sometimes criticized because teachers are seen to be spending more time on their writing than on their teaching.