Bill Bell founded the Centre for the History of the Book at The University of Edinburgh in 1995, of which he was Director until 2012. He has held visiting posts at The Australian National University; The University of Ottawa; and St John’s College, Oxford; Jadavpur University; and The University of Göttingen.
He is a member of the Council of The Bibliographical Society and from 2008-2014 was Editor of the Society’s quarterly, The Library: Transactions of the Bibliographical Society. He has served on the advisory boards of a number of organisations, including the Research Society for Victorian Periodicals (RSVP) and the Society for the History of Authorship, Reading and Publishing (SHARP). He is one of three editors of Palgrave Studies in the History of Media and has served on the advisory boards of several publications, including the American annual Book History.