{"objectType":14,"id":2014,"valid":true}
2015
    Natasha White
Natasha White
Associate Marketing Director  Author Engagement

figshare You are no doubt aware of the growing interest in increasing access to publicly funded research data. The value of data – broadly defined as digital  outputs of research – is recognized by funders globally and in all disciplines. Opening access to the world’s research data offers huge potential to  improve the transparency of research, accelerate the pace of discovery, improve return on investment, and lead to a future in which more research  can be independently verified or made reproducible. As the amount of data continues to grow and as technological barriers begin to subside,  researchers increasingly want to share their own or gain access to other’s research data. Also a growing number of funders are starting to mandate open data, requesting that a researchers’ publicly funded data that informed their work be deposited in an appropriate public archive and made openly available. And working on developing mechanisms through which researchers can gain career credit through sharing their data. The good news is that this can lead to more transparency in research and an increase in the pace of scientific discovery, as results are both validated and built upon by other researchers.

 

According to Sherpa Juliet, there are now 34 funders who mandate open data, and a further 16 who encourage it. And as the global research output continues to rise, and previous technological barriers are broken down, it seems inevitable that more funders will add the archiving of data to their current mandates.

 

These evolving interests coupled with developments in technology present Wiley and our partners with an opportunity to make a significant contribution to the future of research dissemination. Wiley has just announced a partnership with data repository organization, figshare in an effort to support authors who wish to openly share their data, or who are required by funders to make their data publicly accessible.

 

What is figshare?
Figshare is a repository that allows you to upload, store and openly share research data. Wiley’s new data sharing service using Figsharelets youupload data within the existing manuscript submission workflow on the ScholarOne Manuscripts system. If your paper is accepted for publication, data files will be transferred automatically and deposited to the figshare data repository without charge or further work. A link to the data files on figshare appears within the published article on Wiley Online Library.

 

Now you’ll have the ability to display and share your data under a CCO license, as well as auto-generating a data accessibility statement for publication in your article. This will both aid overall discoverability of the article, and allow you to comply with funder mandates around open data, simply and quickly. The data is easy for readers to view, download and share, while funders can easily look at and evaluate data from the research that they have funded.

 

We’re committed to making life easier for authors and researchers as funder requirements evolve, and this partnership means that more data will be accessible and shareable from Wiley Online Library at no additional charge.

On being an editor

Posted Jun 30, 2015
    Nick Rushby
Nick Rushby
Editor, British Journal of Educational Technology

536908011_292811731_292811732_256224451 (1).jpgFrom time to time I am asked to specify my profession, for example on passport or visa applications. I might put down consultant, or university teacher but over the past few years I have realized that I am first and foremost an 'editor.'  It is what I spend most of my time doing and increasingly it defines me.

Editing can be a very solitary activity and it is immensely helpful to share ideas and problems with others who know and understand.  There are two kinds of editors: those who are editing a journal as an adjunct to their main role of teaching or research, and those (like me) for whom editing is their major activity.  Which kind of editor you are colors your approach to the task.

Many learned societies appoint the editors of their journals for a fixed term, often three or four years, perhaps with the possibility of an extension.  In some cases the post is perceived as a necessary chore: someone has to be the editor and it will look impressive on their curriculum vitae, but the demands of the post should be kept to a minimum so that it will not interfere too much with teaching or research, and crucially, will not be perceived by the university as taking too much time.  There was a time when universities welcomed the kudos of having one of their faculty as editor of a major journal.  Now it can be seen as a distraction from the institution's core business.

So what does an editor do?  The most obvious task is to decide on which papers are published and which are rejected.  Some editors act as gate-keepers using established criteria (for example, the journal's scope, maximum article length, etc) to reject unsuitable articles before arranging for peer review.  Those that gain the reviewers' approval are published and the others are rejected.  In contrast, other editors act more as coaches.  Rather than taking a binary approach (accept/reject) they look carefully at those papers which might be revised and improved to a standard which permits acceptance.  This may involve extra work for the editor - and the reviewers - but it raises the overall standard of scholarly writing and is greatly appreciated by the authors.

There is a need too, to help reviewers to develop their skills to evaluate papers and write constructive reports, while being aware of cultural differences in research and writing styles, and in the way that feedback is given and received.  Like authors, all reviewers have to start somewhere; they do not spring fully grown from the academic tree.  I suggest that journals, and journal editors, have a responsibility to develop reviewers and authors.

The second key task is to develop the journal itself, devising and implementing a strategy that will help the journal to realize its vision and its aims.  In this, the editor can call upon the combined wisdom and ideas of the editorial board.  In the case of journals that that are owned by a learned society the society may have aspirations for the journal.  These might include maximizing the revenue generated by the journal, driving up its quality, providing publishing opportunities for the society's members, or enhancing the reputation of the society.

Here, the tendency of learned societies to limit the time that an editor can remain in post works against the successful development of the journal.  It takes time to understand the journal, formulate strategy and tactics, and put these into place.  I suggest (from personal experience and from talking to other editors) that this cannot be achieved in less than five years.  Where societies limit the term of appointment to three years, they may be minimizing the perceived chore of editorship, but they are condemning the journal to a succession of caretaker editors who can do little more than preserve the status quo.  There is however, one potential benefit to the society expressed by one of my fellow editors that "it reduces the risk that the editor starts to believe that they own the journal!"

Editing a journal gives the incumbent a great deal of academic power.  Directly, the editor can determine who is to be published and who is to be rejected.  Indirectly, the editorial policy of major journals can influence the direction of research at a national and international level.  This can take place through conference presentations, representation on committees and advice to funding agencies.  Editors have a unique, international overview of research in their field.  This power and influence has to be balanced by responsible and impeccable ethical behavior.  It is a difficult but rewarding balancing act.

Nick Rushby’s Editorial: On being an editor appears in the July 2015 issue of British Journal of Educational Technology.

Image Credit/Source:Hero Images/Getty Images

    Jayne Fargnoli
Jayne Fargnoli
Editor, Wiley
NYUAD campus Source: Jayne Fargnoli
NYUAD campus
Source: Jayne Fargnoli

Who says academic book publishing lacks glamor? I was invited to conduct a publishing workshop at New York University’s Abu Dhabi campus (NYUAD) in May. The trip was a whirlwind (60 hours on the ground), intense and educational.

NYUAD is one of several global campuses that NYU has created as part of its Global Networked University (GNU) initiative.   Heralded by faculty and administrators alike as an academic 'start-up,'the campus of 2000+ students, faculty and staff, was, until 2014, situated in downtown Abu Dhabi. At the start of this academic year, however, the compound of white-washed buildings was re-located to Saadiyaat Island (Saadiyaat means “happiness” in Arabic). Saadiyaat has been designated by the Emirati government as a cultural zone, and aggressive public/private investment is fueling development that will eventually enable the University to establish itself as the centerpiece of a cultural oasis. The full-scale cultural project is due to be completed in 2020, and at the moment, only the scaffolded outlines of branches of the Louvre and Guggenheim museums in the distance relieve the otherwise forbidding landscape.  I was kindly asked by my hosts to imagine green grass and palm trees in place of the arid expanse of desert.

 

Downtown Abu Dhabi Source: Jayne Fargnoli
Downtown Abu Dhabi
Source: Jayne Fargnoli

As part of NYU’s faculty development program, publishing professionals visit campus once each semester to conduct workshops and discuss the current state of the industry. One of my beloved authors spends his spring semesters at NYUAD, and yes, I shamelessly suggested to him more than a year ago that this editor needed to visit the peninsular kingdom in order to impart to his colleagues the latest and most important insights about the industry.

Most of the scholars at NYUAD are junior faculty and they, along with some recently minted Ph.Ds, comprised the group of 20-25 workshop participants. The faculty with whom I met (a mix of literature, film and media scholars) was international, multilingual and intellectually dazzling.  A veritable 'ex-pat' community mirroring the larger Abu Dhabi culture (where approximately 87% of residents hail from other nations), scholars come to the University from all over the world, and with a well-developed sense of adventure. The 'typical' faculty member is someone born in one country (usually ex-US) and raised in another culture (and often in another language). By virtue of education and professional plans, s/he has catapulted to this far-flung gem of a locale on the Persian Gulf.  The academics’ trans-nationalist, hybrid identity informs the trans-disciplinary scholarship they pursue—explorations of multiple authorship in Arabian Nights; Muslim identity in Kurdistan; political and performative dance in today’s Brazil.

I spent the first part of the day-long workshop outlining for the group trend lines in academic publishing, with particular emphasis on the roles of technology and the economy as ‘disruptors.’  Other topics that came in for review and discussion included the romance (and the reality) of book publishing; the changing role of the bookstore; the fate of the printed book as a beloved object; the rise of social media; the juggernaut that is Amazon; cross-platform, trans-medial content, and how changes in the academy are impacting (and challenging) publishers' traditional mission of ushering great content into the world. I spent the second half of the morning giving a nuts-and-bolts tutorial on how to craft a winning query letter and proposal—both with a view to grabbing the attention of some distracted, demanding, but no doubt discerning commissioning editor (ideally, one at Wiley).  My afternoon was jam-packed with one-on-one meetings with academics to discuss individual projects.

I found the Abu Dhabi cohort to be engaged, sophisticated and highly interactive.  I was often interrupted with questions during my presentation, and encouraged to address topics of particular interest to the group (e.g., how to turn a dissertation into a book). Conversations often veered off topic and off script, and in ways that were productive and informative for the group, and deeply satisfying for this editor. While the backdrop of Abu Dhabi as a setting was unique, the concerns of these scholars seemed to be no different than those of their counterparts in the West. Like junior scholars everywhere, they were intent on establishing a relationship with a press; getting that first book published; building a tenure file and landing a secure academic job. Everyone seemed highly attuned to the reality that the rules of publishing—and the academy—are quickly being re-written; hence, the day-long workshop was welcomed by the group and hailed as valuable, even vital.

    Rachel Toor 
Rachel Toor
Associate Professor, Inland Northwest Center for Writers 

When someone’s doing a lot more than you, you notice it. It brings out your petty jealousy. And if you’re like me (occasionally petty and jealous), it might make you feel crappy about yourself. Which is, let’s face it, ridiculous. No one else’s achievements take anything away from yours, or mine. The fact that another writer is working hard and well should be nothing more than inspiration, or at least a gentle prod.

 

Source: Goydenko Liudmila/iStockphoto
Source: Goydenko Liudmila/iStockphoto

So I started to think about the practices of highly productive writers. What are the personality traits and habits that help people crank out the pages? Here are a few that occur to me:

They reject the notion of "writer’s block". Productive writers don’t reach for excuses when the going gets hard. They treat writing like the job it is. They show up, punch the clock, and punch out. Nothing romantic about it. They give themselves a quota; sometimes it’s butt-in-chair time, sometimes a word count. These writers know how to use deadlines, whether external or self-imposed, to stay on track.

They don’t overtalk their projects. Some writers like to talk about writing more than they actually like to write. Others dine out for years on their topics—giving conference papers, writing journal articles, applying for grants—until they’ve all but lost interest in what they are supposed to be writing. One prolific academic writer told me that he often gets interested in something and spends a few months working before he realizes it’s not going to pan out. He puts it aside without ever having talked about it. Only once it’s well under way will he discuss it.

They believe in themselves and their work. Perhaps it’s confidence, perhaps it’s Quixote-like delusion, but to be a prolific writer you have to believe that what you’re doing matters. If you second-guess at every step, you’ll soon be going backward.

They know that a lot of important stuff happens when they’re not "working”. Productive writers have been through the cycle enough to know it’s a cycle, and sometimes you figure out problems while you’re walking the dog. They know to trust that and don’t get twitchy when the pages stop piling up.

They’re passionate about their projects. Too much scholarly work is obviously produced without heat. Some academics take so long to finish a book they can barely remember what interested them about the topic in the first place. Productive people become impatient and seek out new thrills. They like to learn stuff.

They know what they’re good at. It’s important to find the project and the approach that will work for you and will let you use your own real and valuable skills to best effect. Perhaps academics find themselves traumatized by writing because they’re trying to sound like some "smart" version of themselves. Their writing comes off as inauthentic. Often, however, these same people can talk about their ideas in a way that makes you want to listen for hours. The best writing is a conversation between author and reader. If these folks could write more like they teach—be themselves on the page—the work would surely benefit.

They read a lot, and widely. I’m always amazed when professors say they don’t have time to read for fun. How else can you attempt to write something good? If you don’t think that your work should be a pleasure to read, most of us won’t want to read it. Productive writers (should) pay attention to craft and read to steal tricks and moves from authors they admire.

They know how to finish a draft. As with relationships, beginnings are exciting and easy, full of hope and promise. Middles can get comfortable. You fall into a routine and, for a while, that can be its own kind of fun. But then many of us hit a wall. Whether it’s disillusion, boredom, or self-doubt, we crash into stuckness. Productive authors know that they have to keep going through the hard parts and finish a complete draft. At least you’ve got something to work from.

They work on more than one thing at once. Of course, when you hit that wall, it’s tempting to give up and start on something new and exciting (see above, re: beginnings are easy). While that can lead to a sheaf of unfinished drafts, it can also be useful. Some pieces need time to smolder. Leaving them to turn to something short and manageable makes it easier to go back to the big thing.

They leave off at a point where it will be easy to start again. Some writers quit a session in the middle of a sentence; it’s always easier to continue than to begin. If you know where you’re headed the next time you sit down, you’ll get there faster.

They don’t let themselves off the hook. If only I had three hours of quiet every day. If only I had the perfect office. If only my hair weren’t so frizzy. People often say to writers, "Oh, I’d love to write a book, if only I had the time," as if it’s merely a question of having a leisurely spell to sit noodling at your computer. You have time only if you make it a priority. Productive writers don’t allow themselves the indulgence of easy excuses. When they start to have feelings of self-doubt—I can’t do this, it’s too hard, I’ll never write another good sentence—they tell themselves to stop feeling sorry for themselves and just do the work.

They know there are no shortcuts, magic bullets, special exercises, or incantations. I am suspicious of strategies that diminish the time and effort required to do good work. Write your dissertation in five minutes a day? Complete a book in 60 days? Maybe you’d like to try the KitKat Diet, or purchase a lovely bridge?

There are no tricks to make it easier, just habits and practices you can develop to get it done.

This post is adapted from the original article by Rachel Toor- you can read the full version here.

    Cassidy Sugimoto
Cassidy Sugimoto
Assistant Professor, Indiana University
Source: iunewind/iStockphoto
Source: iunewind/iStockphoto

The altmetrics manifesto, published in 2010 by Jason Priem and colleagues, argued for a new type of metric to capture the diversity of  the contemporary scholarly system—making manifest both the heterogeneity of scholarly output and the impact of scholarship on  science and society alike. As stated: “Altmetrics expand our view of what impact looks like, but also of what’s making the impact.”  Priem defines altmetrics as the “study and use of scholarly impact measures based on activity in online tools and environments” and  lists blogs, microblogs, reference management systems, and data repositories as potential sources.

 

There has been a proliferation of activity around altmetrics since this introduction, spurred in no small part by the growing emphasis of  funding agencies on the demonstration of impactbeyond academia.” Scholarly metrics have never been without criticism; however,  the expansion of data and sources and the increased use for evaluation have brought renewed concern around the ethical principles  of research metrics.

 

Here are some of the particular challenges facing altmetrics, including the misappropriation of the term impact, the narrow scope of focus, and the potential goal displacement of scientific activity:

 

The term impact has been readily and regularly adopted into the altmetrics discourse. Altmetric.com—a start-up measuring online activity of scholarly journal articles—claims to measure attention, but asserts that publishers can “showcase research impact”, institutions can have a “richer picture of their online research impact”, and researchers can monitor “personal research impact.” Similarly, the tagline of Impactstory—a non-profit focused on aggregating individual-level altmetric data—urges you to “Discover your impact today.” Scientometric studies have followed suit—regularly employing the term impact when discussing altmetric measures. This is in keeping with hallowed traditions within science evaluation—the simultaneously reviled and revered Journal Impact Factor (JIF) continues to reign over scientific publishing and, in doing so, makes metonymic the relationship between citation counts and impact. It is no far stretch, then, to equate new metrics of scholarly attention with impact.

 

This seems, however, a great distortion of the meaning of impact. Does the act of tweeting evoke an image of forcible contact? Does a save on Mendeley represent the strong effect of an article on the user? The term impact connotes far greater engagement and transformative effect than is currently justifiable with altmetric data. A more persuasive claim is that what is captured are metrics of attention of a scholarly object—the nature of this attention is something much more complex and far less understood. One can easily find examples of extremely high Altmetric.com scores which are the result of a viral joke, proofreading error, or scientific hoax. Behind these outliers are undoubtedly scores of articles whose recognition in policy documents, popular press, and on social media is a legitimate sign that the work is relevant and interesting to a broader public. How to identify the underlying mechanism of altmetric attention remains a critical challenge.

 

Understanding the mechanisms and motivations of altmetric attention is hampered by the inability to accurately identify the public upon which altmetrics is effecting change. The notion of a mythical science-tweeting-lay-public is persistent in the narrative, yet absent from empirical studies. In a recent study of tweets to journal articles from PLoS ONE, PNAS, Science, and Nature, we identified more than a third of those tweeting links to scientific articles as holders of doctoral degrees—far exceeding the proportion of doctoral degree holders in the general population. Knowledge about who is generating traces of attention is a necessary factor in establishing the credibility of altmetrics.

 

Another challenge is in the realization of the expansive goals of the altmetric movement. The promise of altmetrics was a broadening of measures of impact that took into account all the various ways in which scholarship is produced and disseminated. However, most altmetric studies have focuses exclusively on journal article metrics from relatively few platforms. While it is laudable to demonstrate the attention an article is receiving from these sources, it is a far cry from the foundational message—that is, that scholarship is no longer confined to “slow rigid formal communication systems.” Where are the metrics that capture the cacophony of scholarly activity? Researchers and practitioners must think creatively about the types of scholarship which remain hidden, despite the valiant efforts of the altmetric movement.

 

Lastly, but perhaps most importantly, is the concern of goal displacement—an inevitable byproduct of the promotion of altmetrics. Campbell’s Law states the issue most precisely: “The more any quantitative social indicator is used for social decision-making, the more subject it will be to corruption pressures and the more apt it will be to distort and corrupt the social processes it is intended to monitor.” Libraries have begun to incorporate altmetrics into institutional repositories and to provide guidance to researchers on how to document altmetrics on their CVs for the purposes of promotion, tenure, and merit evaluation. The underlying assumption is that an article has more worth if it has a higher altmetric score and, by extension, a scholar‘s worth increases as more articles receive mention. One might argue that review of scholars is more nuanced and that reviewers would not fall prey to such gross misinterpretation of data. However, as those who have studied citation analysis or sought publication in a high JIF journal can attest, numbers are persuasive to evaluators examining dozens of dossiers.

 

The scientific community, administrators, and policy makers should take care lest we let the tweet become the end in itself: topics should not be chosen for their potential to go viral, nor should scholars spend inordinate time managing their reputations online. Altmetrics should be harnessed not to replace any existing metrics, but rather to expand the tools available to demonstrate the diffusion of science. Responsible use of altmetrics requires that we diligently seek to understand the underlying mechanisms of measures of attention, expand our ability to capture the diversity of traces of scholarly activity, and realize that attention is not impact.

Make a (mission) statement

Posted Jun 23, 2015
    Diana Macri
Diana Macri
Assistant Professor, Hostos Community College

shutterstock_115614919_271800311_271800312_256224451 (1).jpgIn October of last year, the United States heard of the academic scandal at the University of North Carolina where, over the course of 18 years, students received credit for African-American studies courses without having to show up for class, complete assignments or take any tests. What makes this incident particularly hard to swallow is the person at the center of the controversy, Professor Jan Boxill.

Boxill was a tenured philosophy professor and former director of the Parr Center for Ethics at UNC. An irrefutable and staggering (in their number if not in content) string of emails confirmed her complicity in helping athletes remain academically eligible to play sports.

Ask the average person what ethics is and they’ll likely refer to it as a set of moral principles or values. But what are these moral principles and who gets to decide which ones are more important than others?

Even among those who believe they know ethics, there is not total agreement on the meaning of the terms that are used. Ethics are standards of right and wrong that prescribe what humans ought to do; principles such as veracity, courage, integrity, forthrightness, consistency, creativity, humility, altruism, quality, accountability, excellence, compassion, innovation, social justice, wisdom, kindness, trust, balance and fairness. This is in relation to themselves, to each other, to other species and to the environment.

The challenge for most lies not in finding consensus on the principles that are most important, but in remaining loyal to them. By reminding us of what we value most, personal mission statements help us to resolve the various ethical dilemmas we face every day.

Where ethics comes from

Our most fundamental attitudes about what is right or wrong are taught to us by our parents. Religion, life events and education all play a part in those attitudes as well. These factors shape not only our values but our ability to adhere to those values when we are tested.

When I teach professional ethics, one of my major goals is to assist students in reaching an awareness of their own moral perspective. Most of my students are unaware of what their moral perspective is.

This is not due to their youth; most adults are not aware of what exactly is guiding their decisions, and that alone undermines their ability to behave ethically. I guide them in creating a personal mission statement to help them understand their moral perspective.

Creating a personal mission statement

Most people have heard of mission statements as they relate to organizations.

Companies have corporate mission statements designed to provide direction and inspiration to the organization. A company’s mission statement serves as a reminder of what the goals for the organization are. A mission statement explains the organization’s reason for being and answers the question, “What is it that we want to do?”

A personal mission statement is a bit different from a company mission statement, but the fundamental principles are the same. Writing a personal mission statement offers one the opportunity to establish what’s important and helps reinforce it when tested.

Stephen Covey in First Things First: Understand Why So Often Our First Things Aren’t First (Fireside, 1994) refers to developing a mission statement as “connecting with your own unique purpose and the profound satisfaction that comes from fulfilling it.” A personal mission statement helps a person identify their core values and beliefs. It’s a synopsis of what you’re all about and wish to be. It’s your definition of success.

Crafting a personal mission statement will take some time, introspection and self-awareness. The first part of the process is to let go of the past and whatever failures and disappointments have occurred.

What we perceive as negative experiences, or failures, are actually the things that have taught us the most. We must accept our shortcomings in the past in order to behave better in the future.

To craft a strong statement, you must be honest with yourself about what it is that you are and what it is that you want to be. I tell my students to “dream big” when they are thinking

of the core components of the statement. Ask yourself:

• What is the most important thing in my life?

• Who are the most important people in my life?

• What contributions do I want to make?

• What talents do I possess?

• What makes me happy?

• What core values are most important to me?

There are also Web-based sources that can help you craft your personal mission statement. The Franklin Covey link (http://www.franklincovey.com/msb/) directs you to answer a series of questions. Once you have answered all the questions, it will automatically condense your answers and allow you to save them and/or copy and paste. Use this as a template for your personal mission statement. Add and remove sections as you wish. Elaborate the sections you feel most strongly about.

It will take time

A personal mission statement is meant to be created once and it usually takes quite a while to complete. Most find it difficult to define their greatest aspirations and, consequently, the means by which to achieve them. But through honest introspection, as you carefully assert what you value most, you will create a set of rules to guide you.

As Covey states, “Fundamentally, your mission statement becomes your constitution, the solid expression of your vision and values. It becomes the criterion by which you measure everything else in your life.” It will become harder to stray from your core values once you have defined them this way.

Once you have completed the statement, keep it close by and refer to it regularly. If you are bold, display it in your office or webpage or include it in your portfolio. Such open expressions of individuality never go unnoticed or unappreciated.

The above was reprinted with permission from Women in HIgher Education.

Image Credit/Source:michaeljung/Shutterstock

 

On the front lines of research

Posted Jun 19, 2015
    Ylann Schemm
Ylann Schemm
Communications Chair, Research4Life
Participants attending a Research4Life training at the Makerere University Library with Caroline Kobusingye Source: Research4Life
Participants attending a Research4Life training at the Makerere University Library with Caroline Kobusingye
Source: Research4Life

 

As a young student, Caroline Kobusingye was planning a career in counseling. “My passion is to help people and I thought that was the best way to do it,” she says. Working in a university library during school vacations convinced her that library science is also an extremely valuable means of helping people achieve their goals.

 

Now a librarian at Makerere University, Caroline guides faculty, students, medical workers and researchers to the evidence-based information they need to promote health and development and achieve their goals.

 

As a national e-resources coordinator, Caroline often travels outside of the capital Kampala to provide training in Research4Life and other electronic resources. She urges librarians at the institutions she visits to sign up for Research4Life and guides them through the registration process.

 

Recently, Caroline brought her information technology skills to the University of Juba in South Sudan where she trained librarians, lecturers and researchers to use Research4Life programs under a temporary arrangement. South Sudan became an independent state in July 2011 following a referendum. Since mid-December 2013, growing political instability has created significant challenges for the country.

 

Most did not know that Research4Life existed, this introductory workshop was a starting point. They saw that Research4Llife could help them access important publishers with journals their institution could not afford. They were looking forward to more training, but unfortunately they went back into war.

 

At Makerere University, Caroline works at the institution’s main library, known as Maklib, which oversees nine college libraries, the libraries of the medical and other schools and a book bank system. The use of electronic resources at Makerere has flourished in recent years. Research4Life logins soared from 4,500 in 2008 to more than 14,000 in 2012.

 

A large, new extension has significantly increased library space and the University has invested heavily in computers. Uganda’s largest institution of higher learning provides continuous e-resource training for its students, faculty, and researchers. New students get training during orientation. A two week information management course devotes a full session to the use of Research4Life programs and their importance.

 

When students begin to tackle class work, they really see the reason to learn about Research4Life resources and they come to the librarians for more training, Caroline says. She advises users conducting literature searches to venture beyond the boundaries of the Research4Life program designated for their area of study. “I tell them HINARI is for health, AGORA is for agricultural and OARE is for the environment but not to have a biased mind because they can get a lot of information from all of the Research4Life resources.”

 

Makerere University added ARDI as a resource at the end. Caroline says the program designed to encourage the development of new solutions to technical problems needs a ‘friendlier interface’ so that more people will use it. “It is not user-friendly so many researchers go back to HINARI or AGORA,” she explains, “But ARDI is scheduled to launch a new user interface in that matches the other programs, which should make these researchers happy.”

 

Caroline also urges for more training in Research4Life for librarians. “Training for the trainers builds confidence,” she says, “Once you show users that you don’t know, they will not come back to you.”

 

In contrast, librarians who are proactive and make it clear to users that they are ready and able to assist are recognized as crucial academic assets. Caroline remembers a master-level agricultural student who was struggling to find material for his dissertation. After teaching him to navigate Research4Life, the student told Caroline he believed he could complete his work within a year. “He came back later to tell me he had submitted his dissertation and was awaiting approval,” she reveals. This concrete example illustrates what Caroline considers the biggest rewards of her profession.

 

“The joy as a librarian is seeing people achieve their goals because these students want to study and finish their research and a lot of them are stuck,” she says, “It is a great thing to help people achieve what they set out to achieve when they have lost hope.”


This story was excerpted from Unsung Heroes: Stories from the Library, a Research4Life publication.

    Thomas Gaston
Thomas Gaston
   Managing Editor, Wiley

The scenario is all too familiar. You patiently read through the paper, you make exhaustive notes, you write up a comprehensive review with point-by-point instructions explaining exactly how the manuscript is to be changed and then, lo and behold, the author has the audacity to disagree! Makes you wonder why you bother.

 

 

Source: MACIEJ NOSKOWSKI/Getty Images 
Source: MACIEJ NOSKOWSKI/Getty Images

The author, however, sees things differently. They conducted the research, they wrote up their findings, they know their work better than  anyone else – of course, they are going to feel protective and likely to disagree if others cannot see the value in what they have done.  The  author has the right to disagree with criticisms of their paper and the right to disagree with recommended changes. Authors cannot  expect  to win over their critics but they have the right to try.

 

Below are some suggestions for reviewers on how to respond when authors disagree with their recommendations.

 

The Role of Reviewer

 

Sometimes authors, particularly those researchers early in their careers, feel that reviewers act as an obstacle to publication. Yet this is  not the role of reviewers; they are guides, not gatekeepers. Yes, sometimes as a reviewer you will feel it necessary to recommend  rejection, but that recommendation should be accompanied by a valid explanation of the problems with the paper. While reviewers are  not  obliged to mentor authors, it is part of that role to help authors understand the problems with their papers.

 

When recommending revisions to authors, the reviewer should be focused on providing suggestions that will improve the paper, not  stipulating the criteria for acceptance. Remember, it is the role of reviewers to advise; editors make decisions.

 

Review as Discussion

 

To a certain extent, the review process is a discussion between authors and reviewers. Reviewers do need to provide a judgement to the editor and, ultimately, the editor will make a decision whether to accept or reject the paper. Within this process, there is room for some degree of back-and-forth between authors and reviewers. And, as with any discussion, it will be most effective if both parties are speaking to each other’s concerns rather than talking past one another.

 

If a reviewer provides suggestions for improvements, ideally the authors should respond to them. This does not mean that the author will necessarily follow those suggestions, but if they do disagree then it is helpful to explain why. Perhaps the author has found a better way to address the concerns, or can provide clarifications that mean the concerns no longer exist. In any eventuality, the author should at least respond to what the reviewer has said.

 

In the same way, reviewers should engage with authors’ responses. Perhaps you feel that the author hasn’t met your critique and your suggested changes would still be valuable. Perhaps you feel the author’s “solution” has just introduced new problems. Whatever the case, reviewers should be engaging directly with the responses provided.

 

Bear in mind that you will never be the only person in the discussion. There will usually be two reviewers on each paper, possibly more, as well as one or more editors. So, it is not just your suggestions that the author will be addressing. Ultimately it is up to the editor to guide the author as to how to revise his/her paper (the editor may not agree with your suggestions!) Similarly, it is up to the editor to guide the reviewers as to any points to focus on when reviewing revised papers.

 

What if your comments have been ignored?

 

There may be situations where authors haven’t addressed your review comments. In these situations, try not to assume that you have been intentionally ignored – it may be an innocent oversight. You may like to reiterate your suggestion, highlighting why you feel it is important and try to encourage the author to respond. But, avoid being adversarial or doctrinaire.

 

There may be situations where the authors have not made any effort to address the comments provided by reviewers, or have only made a half-hearted effort to do so. You may not feel that it is worth your while engaging in further review of the paper until the authors have made a serious effort. If this is the case you should contact the editor directly with your concerns.

 

The Golden Rule

 

In the review process- as in life- treat others as you would like to be treated. When someone disagrees with you, whether a close friend or an author you’ve never met, don’t just assume that they are wrong. You would like others to take the time to understand where you’re coming from so try to extend the same courtesy to them.

 

Related Posts:
Cooperation not confrontation- how to convince referees and respond to reviews

    Biswapriya Misra
Biswapriya Misra
   Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Florida, Gainesville
Source:  George Clerk/iStockPhoto
Source: George Clerk/iStockPhoto

Depending on whether the previous night was spent in the lab or not determines whether the day starts at 6:30 or 8:30 AM. Onmy way  to lab, I’m checking email on my smartphone and responding to a few, including accepting journal requests for peer review, fielding  requests from colleagues to share resources, and checking updates from ResearchGate.

 

Once in the lab, I’m collecting samples, treatments, extractions, and attending to and running the Mass-spectrometers (our tireless  workhorses). Towards mid-day, the collected data starts running through a host of programs on my laptop as I enjoy my home-  cooked, Indian lunch. Phase II of experiments for the day start by running to the growth chambers/greenhouses to see that the plants  are well-watered and that cell cultures are maintained before venturing onto phase III of the experiments. In between, a lot of time is  spent on experimental planning, design, record-keeping, archiving, and cataloging of the ‘huge-omics data” (Big data!) that are  generated. There’s usually some banter with my multicultural lab-mates (read: US, China, India, Brazil, Korea, Egypt…) which keeps  me awake and on my toes. Oh, and tea and a bag of chips help with that too.

 

As the sun sets, a delayed dinner is inevitable as data interpretation and manuscript writing tasks begin. A literature review on Google  Scholar keeps me dreaming about the future of‘science, full of immense possibilities’. I just need to keep going! While browsing articles in Scholar, I archive the searches in a Mendeley interface so as to help in future manuscript and review drafting and I keep my phone on silent to avoid distractions. Occasionally, I attend departmental seminars from eminent speakers on topics ranging from: anything-to-do-with-plants, to statistics, to publishing. I also speak at and attend a plant breeding interest group that has formed a Plant breeding Journal Club. As a contributing Editor to the Postdoc Journal (a journal initiated by, of, and for the Postdoc community), I contribute reviews to the journal and help the Editors with reviewing, proposing special issues and coordinating reviews. It’s tricky to keep track of all of these events, and there’s only so much time in one’s life for scientific discovery, so I try to strike a balance.

 

Later in the evening, I check in on peers and notable colleagues on ResearchGate, both to see what they’ve published and to be inspired by their progress. I frequently have a paper waiting to be reviewed, as I perform peer review for about 25 journalsm averaging three to five every month. While this is a substantial time commitment, (!), I feel it’s worth it to contribute to the development of my peers. Some evenings, it’s worth posting a question at Metastars, the Biostars equivalent for Metabolomics, so as to interact and keep updated with the field. Serving as an Early career Member’s Network (EMN) of the Metabolomics Society also involves someweekly tasks that need to becompletedThis role also helps me to collaborate with the global metabolomics researchers who are the future of metabolomics research. Occasionally, I share research thoughts on Slide Share which also helps me to network and connect with researchers sharing similar interests. Although I do maintain a blog called Science-o-nomics, it is very difficult to find time to update it frequently.

 

It’s not only crucial to keep updated in biochemistry and plant physiology but I also need to keep current with the newly released tools, software, programs, databases and webservers as well as the latest technology that is being implemented in mass-spectrometry be it TripleQuads, Orbitraps, SWATH, GC-Orbitraps and so on. While I’ve explored a variety of social media platforms to stay connected, Facebook proved to be useless for career building, while Twitterwas overwhelming. ResearchGateturned outto be the best option around. LinkedIn, which never worked for me in obtaining a job opportunity, possibly for reasons other than the opportunities presented by the site itself, is a really good platform for networking with industry professionals, trading recommendations, and taking part in a huge number of interest groups (and discussions). On a weekly basis I also update my Scoops on Scoopt.It for Plant Metabolomics, Plant Genomics and Databases & Softwares.

 

My current workload leaves very little time for even a weekend away, much less a vacation. I can’t hide from the reality that the global research funding crunch has nurtured a cut-throat competition to obtain a tenured position in both the US and my native county, India. Sometimes the realization that time is not enough and there is not enough time is overwhelming, yet I have the passion that drives me toward my goals. As I elevate in my position and in the labs I’m working for, I feel I’m getting closer to my dream of contributing to science and humanity. This is not merely for philanthropic reasons, but to make sure that the purpose of science ultimately is to make human lives easier.. And yes, plants are central to the development of food, fiber, fuel, fodder, and medicine. Every day the backlog piles, up, and balancing a personal life alongside it is not easy. Therefore, a supportive and calm PI is pivotal, whether they’re advising on funding issues, offering mental support, or nudging you to ‘keep going’. Likewise, lab colleagues form the pillars of a lab’s “mental health”.

 

Every day begins with the same question as originally stated by Steve Jobs “Do I wanna become what am I going to do today?”, and ends with “How did I fare today?” At my core, my passion for the research is constantly driving me forward,, challenging my current status, fueling my interests, filling me with ambition and, and asking me to RISE, and I do just that the next morning with the intention of doing even better.

 

Biswapriya isa member of the Wiley Advisors program, a group of early career researchers and professionals who serve as a voice for their communities. For more information, please visit Wiley Advisors online or on twitter@WileyAdvisors.

    Jill Hawthorne
Jill Hawthorne
   Associate Director, International Business Development, Wiley

Group of students using digital tablet  

     The Millennial Generation student consumes and interacts with information in a multiplicity      of ways, at any time, in any location. Where Generation X took computer skills from study to      employment, the Millennials have grown up with an array of devices – from game consoles, to      computers, to smartphones, to e-readers, to tablets. They read, message, watch video, chat,      blog, photograph and tweet, interrogating and assimilating data across diverse formats. The      speed and flow of information empowers Millennials to research, share and learn faster. As      educators, how best do we engage their skills?

 

     Wiley’s Trina Cody and Sarah Andrus have recently blogged on Millennial (or Generation Y)         e-learning preferences, outlining opportunities for societies to enhance engagement (Meeting      the eLearning needs of Generation Y, Leveraging the Power of Your Brand Through Learning). How      have academic libraries adjusted to this generation? Allow me to share a few reflections      published in a recent review (1) on how librarians have characterized the Millennials and responded to their needs.

 

     Knowing your customer
Library scientists have been close behind the generational theorists in developing the characterization of that cohort of customers born between the early 1980s and early 2000s. The literature depicts the Millennials as “digital natives “, a generation of library users who are also format-agnostic, nomadic, multi-tasking, experiential, collaborative, integrated, principled, adaptive and direct. They think and process information in a fundamentally different way to their predecessors and are uninspired by the technical skills of their educators.

 

Recognizing “satisficing” when you see it
The immediacy of online communication and gaming tends to make Millennials impatient, even by their own reckoning. High technical engagement can be accompanied by a willingness to accept “good enough” information drawn from a limited range of sources. “Satisficing” denotes the tendency to feel satisfied with their research when a sufficient answer is reached, eschewing an exhaustive search of all sources. The Baby Boomer or Generation X librarian may not be a “digital native” but lends a more linear, systematic approach to information retrieval.

 

Adapting for the self-servicing customer
Millennials are considered confident, and to a large extent effective, in selecting high-quality web resources. They are versatile consumers who can toggle between commercial search engines, social networking sites, bookmarked resources and electronic library services to satisfy their information needs. They are frustrated by traditional advanced search and seek customizable, convenient services. At the heart of student expectations is a sense that libraries should deliver to self-empower.

 

The Librarians Evolving Role
University librarians, consequently, have noted a decline in demand for traditional reference work and an expanding role as customer-centric educators. Students see them as a source of procedural or directional support over specialist subject support. Librarians are focused on providing information literacy tuition, creating and maintaining electronic resources, delivering quality learning spaces, metadata development, licensing digital material, and collecting and digitizing archival material. Librarians are seen embracing their directional, para-academic role in creative ways that suit Millennial learning styles.

 

Mobile Library Services
As the librarians very role has adapted to Millennial expectations, service delivery has had to catch up with a generation rapidly migrating to mobile. Librarians have polled their users and grappled with the options to adjust PC-based digital library services for smaller screens with smaller keyboard devices. What content is essential, what content lends itself to mobile, and how can presentation be simplified? Will native apps be more appropriate than a website customized for mobile? The literature suggests considerable convergence across US and UK universities in the kind of services that have migrated to mobile.

 

In short, librarians have been creative in keeping pace with both the behavioral changes brought on by the working and learning styles of Millennials and the technological shifts driving those changes.

 

 

 

(1) For more Millennial characterizations and examples of how academic librarians have striven to engage a generation, read Jills full paper:

 

Hawthorne, Jill L “Engaging the Skill Set of the Millennials: Librarians, Content and Technology in the Mobile Age” in QScience Proceedings, The SLA-AGC 21st Annual Conference, Abu Dhabi, 17-19 March 2015. http://www.qscience.com/doi/pdf/10.5339/qproc.2015.gsla.3

    Kathryn Coble 
Kathryn Coble
Community Marketing, Wiley 
Source: Ryan J Reilly, Wikimedia Creative Commons
Source: Ryan J Reilly, Wikimedia Creative Commons

As researchers, ‘impact’ is a driving factor behind many funding priorities in the academic world. And by 'impact' we often mean citations. But what about real impact? How can researchers in fields such as History, Business, Psychology, Education and Philosophy influence social change on a global level?

This month we're bringing research to bear on the often hot-button issues surrounding the LGBT community, helping the voices of researchers contribute to the social constructions of our world. We want philosophers, like those whose work on biomedical ethics appears in The Hastings Center Report, to have their impact felt in the daily work of a medical practitioner who sees transgendered patients. We want the scholarly review of LGBT couples in film and media studies to help cast a critical eye on film, media, and literature and change the LGBT literary and artistic canon. Most importantly, we want researchers and experts to open communication lines for discussion on topics relevant to other research communities and demonstrate the impact of interdisciplinary research in the real world.

“…the story of gay and lesbian people and the law is not yet finished, and the meaning of homosexuality for bioethics is still being written too.” —Timothy F. Murphy, Hastings Center Report

We invite you to explore our special collection of scholarly content related to the LGBT community. In collaboration with researchers, authors and experts, we’re opening this interdisciplinary conversation through the Philosopher’s Eye blog, a forum for scholars and general readers on topics relating to Philosophy and society. Throughout the month, scholars and authors will contribute original blog posts to discuss important questions raised by the research. We encourage everyone to engage with these blog posts and the research by commenting through the Philosopher’s Eye and sharing this content by word of mouth or social media.

As Ann Larabee, an editor of the Journal of Popular Culture writes in her blog post, “Much has been written on the importance of [Bruce] Jenner’s revelation for the acceptance of transgendered people but the interview also gives a fascinating glimpse into aging celebrity,” meanwhile, Bruce Drushel from the Journal of American Culture is reflecting upon the portrayal of the LGBT Couple in media and film. Annika Thiem, a local board member of Hypatia, is revisiting the academic voice of philosophy and queer studies, calling for a change in the rhetoric that would eliminate the distance between philosophers as personal observers of queer studies and writing as the “queer we”. Each blog explores an intimate piece of LGBT conversation, calling upon the reader to think critically about the ways in which we view our world and how we can immerse the LGBT community into our version of “us”. Considerations around the LGBT community expand across psychology in terms of family or marital therapy, child psychology, education, and we’ve asked the experts in those fields to weigh in as well. This special collection and blog really explore a wealth of research across many disciplines and begin a necessary conversation about how we approach education and practice concerning this community. As Timothy Murphy says in his blog post, The Physician, The Bioethicist, and the LGBT Community, “LGBT people are and are not like everyone else.”

The blog will continue to host guest blog editorials from prominent journals all month. Join the conversation and impact today: http://thephilosopherseye.com/.

What makes a good abstract?

Posted Jun 11, 2015
    Vikki Renwick
Vikki Renwick
Assistant Marketing Manager, Author Marketing, Wiley

shutterstock_124814620_294738566_294738567_256224451.jpgThe Author Marketing Team is fresh from another successful webinar. What Makes a Good Abstract and More provided insights for authors on the structure, style and search engine optimization (SEO) of titles and abstracts for articles and books. Jamie Wielgus, Associate Editor and Kris Bishop, Marketing Manager, answered most of your questions along the way - on everything from the best number of words to have in a title, to the SEO differences between Google and Google Scholar - but there were a few questions that we didn’t have time for and have answered below, as promised.

If you missed this webinar or one of our previous ones, you can watch them all on demand via our Author Services Channel webpage. More information on writing “good” titles and abstracts is also available in our Journal Author Guide.

What about the use of external citations in the title? For example a sentence like The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, the title of a movie.

In general, it is best to stay away from citations in your title; more importantly, however, it is key that your title explains as clearly as possible the topic of your paper. A title such as “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly,” while catchy because it references a well-known film, does not tell readers (and citers!) enough about what to expect from the content of your manuscript. When crafting your title, you want to be sure to be descriptive, and to clearly communicate the subject of your manuscript; remember, too, as Kris discussed during our webinar, to use key words in your title, and to ensure that your title describes your manuscript’s main concept.

I'd like to begin the title of a manuscript with "When size matters:...". A search in Google Scholar returned 661 results. Therefore, is this a good or a bad beginning for my title?

’When size matters…’ is not a great start to a title in terms of discoverability because the likelihood is small that someone would search for that phrase when they’re looking for articles on a specific topic. Similarly, if someone is scanning a list of article titles quickly, starting your title with an ‘extra’ phrase before getting to the topic takes up valuable reader time. Remember discoverability - the job of the title and abstract is to help readers find the RIGHT content, not a LOT of content. Take a look at the search results that show up in Google Scholar for this phrase, and if they cover a wide range of topics or a topic that is not directly related to your article, consider cutting this phrase out of your title and using only your core key words in the title (see webinar for more on core key words). Yes, it means your article title will likely be more boring - but more effective.

Image Credit/Source:Goodluz/Shutterstock

    Bill Deluise
Bill Deluise
Vice President, Society Strategy & Marketing, Wiley

A few weeks ago, I had my first fifteen minutes of Twitter fame. It was wild.

shutterstock_197256626_267055326_267055327_256224451 (1).jpgHere’s what happened: I was at the Society for Scholarly Publishing, presenting at a session called Beyond Market Research: Getting from insight to product solutions. There was a decent-sized group in attendance (which was a relief. There’s nothing I find more nerve-racking than the five minutes leading up to a presentation, waiting around wondering whether anyone will show up. It’s a terrible feeling). The talk I was giving was focused on managed innovation, touching on some of the tools and approaches that we’ve been trialing at Wiley and sharing some of the lessons we learned in the process.

Right before I was supposed to start talking, I put my phone on the podium to keep track of time. About three minutes into the session, it started to happen: pop-up notification after pop-up notification from my Twitter app telling me that I had been mentioned in a tweet or that a tweet I had been mentioned in had been retweeted. There were direct quotes of something I had said, or paraphrases, or observations from people agreeing or disagreeing. It lasted for the whole 45 minutes of the talk and the retweets continued for a while afterwards. I’m still getting one or two a day a couple of weeks later.

It was like a drug.

I’ve done a fair bit of presenting to crowds of various sizes, and whenever you’re presenting, you get some sense of participants’ reactions. Do they look bored? Are the questions friendly and curious or skeptical and confrontational? Is what I’m saying resonating at all? Usually, though, you have read facial expressions, or body language, or tone of voice. Never before have  I had an experience where the feedback was there— in black and white and in real-time— and where there was an immediate indication of what people were responding to most.

Reflecting back on it, I think what I found most interesting was how frequently there was a gap between what participants in the session heard and what I had intended to say. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t think I poorly expressed myself the entire time. There were, however, a couple of instances where I read a quote or a comment on something I had just said and thought to myself, “Hmm, I probably should have phrased that differently.”

For example…

@AdrianStanley13 said “Loved this quote from #ssp2015 Innovation is not the same as creativity. Innovation is creativity operationalized. @wdeluise Bill Deluise, …”

Actually, that one is totally true. That’s exactly what I said and exactly what I meant. Creativity and innovation are not the same thing to my mind, because innovation can be facilitated in a way that creativity can’t. Innovation is a manageable process and, while there are ways to enhance creativity (environmental, psychological, and, within the context of an organization, structural), I don’t think you can manage creativity in the same way that you can manage innovation.

A little later, @GazelleInDminor and @LilHoboClown took slightly different twists on the same statement. @GazelleInDminor said “.@wdeluise: For people who have more opinions than data, overshare your data to kindly show them their nice opinions are wrong. #ssp2015” and @LilHoboClown said “‘I thought you might be interested in knowing you're not right.’ @wdeluise shares data w/people with strong opinions but few facts. #ssp2015”

Now, that, again, is technically true, although I didn’t mean to sound quite so harsh. I was responding to a question about how to manage the expectations of stakeholders in your organization who have opinions (particularly around new product development) that don’t match the research you’ve done to support the innovation you’re managing. The suggestion I was making was that you could try sharing the research you’ve done and your results as widely as possible and with whomever in your organization might be interested to reinforce that what you’re proposing or exploring or recommending is well founded in actual customer or user feedback. In the Twitter-based retelling, I’m afraid I come across as a bit insufferable and know-it-all-y (which, if true, totally isn’t the goal).

And @tcody84 (who is, in the spirit of full disclosure, a good friend and colleague) tweeted “Millennials are interested in activities that are broadly defined as developmental than informational, says @wdeluise #SSP2015”.

Again, that could be what I said, but, if so, I epically failed to express myself clearly. Or the 140-character limit of tweets removed some of the nuance. In a survey Wiley conducted, we asked respondents to indicate how much they value more than a dozen activities offered by societies and associations. Segmenting by generation suggested that Millennial respondents were more interested than respondents from other generations in activities that are more developmental in nature (Continuing Education, for example, or leadership experiences) than informational (e.g., peer-reviewed journals). I didn’t mean to imply that Millennials like developmental offerings from societies more than they like informational ones. What I meant was that Millennials like developmental offerings more than, say, members of Generation X or Baby Boomers, who seem to have a stronger preference for more informational offerings.

I guess I’ve always known that there is the risk of a disconnect between what you say and what you mean to say or what you mean to say and what people hear. Giving a presentation that was being tweeted about, though, really threw that potential disconnect into focus.

So when I was asked to summarize my talk as this blog post, I wanted to be as clear as possible on the points that I thought might be most interesting. Believing in strength in numbers, I called in for back-up and asked my colleague Sabina Ashton to help summarize the talk I gave. Sabina is a really talented colleague in our Society Strategy and Marketing team, a group helping to facilitate the evolution of and communication about Wiley’s suite of publishing, learning, and information services to societies and associations. She’s a relative newcomer to scholarly publishing, having joined Wiley in 2014. Prior to that, Sabina was completing her Master's degree in European Business Culture and Languages at Oxford Brookes University.

I gave her my talk, my slides and my notes, and this is her summary:

The behavior of users, whether they be readers, authors or browsers, is changing at a fast rate – faster than ever before. Moreover, the very nature of research is changing; it’s happening everywhere, from new funding routes to new expectations for dissemination. With the rise of big data, information is more easily available and is changing the nature of professional practice. At the same time, we’re in the midst of a major generational shift. A recent survey that Wiley carried out last year, for example, concluded that the representatives of four generation groups (the Silent Generation, Baby Boomers, Generation X and Millennials) value what the societies or associations offer differently.

There is a real need for innovation as research, technology and, most importantly, the things that users value are all changing. Organizations need to adapt to these changes in order to be successful, but does that necessarily mean that they should add structure to their innovations programs?

That was the question that Bill explored in his talk the other week, and the recommendation was that it’s important to implement structure to guard against expensive product failures. Products fail more often than they succeed. Indeed, even if they do succeed, things often take longer than planned to develop. Bill refers to Robert Wolcott, a professor at the Kellogg School in Chicago, who says that innovation is a two-step process: innovation strategy, which is creating a portfolio of concepts for exploration, and innovation management, or reducing uncertainty in bringing those concepts to market. As a result, a managed innovations program aims to minimize risk, emphasize speed, and increase the likelihood of market acceptance.

At this point, you might start to wonder how to actually manage innovation…

 

Figure 1
Figure 1

First, you need a strategy. And the strategy should be driven by the gap between your growth aspirations and your growth expectations. Growth can be measured in a number of different ways: revenue, profit, usage, article submissions, and citations are just a few. However you’re defining growth, once you can articulate the difference between where you think you’ll end up in a few years and where you want to be, you’ll have an idea of how aggressively you need to pursue innovation and what type of innovation makes the most sense to you. There is a helpful matrix (figure.1) that plots new and existing markets against new and existing products, which is useful in assessing what type of innovation you’ll pursue. Your style of innovation could be sustaining (targeting your core markets and your existing products), adjacent (targeting new markets with your existing products), evolutionary (creating new products for your existing markets) or transformative (creating new products for markets that you don’t yet reach). How aggressively you pursue innovation should be driven by how big the gap is between your aspirations and expectations and how best to go about minimizing that with the right level of investment of time, energy, money and emotion.

 

Figure 2
Figure 2

Bill also talked about how your strategy should be explicit early on as to where you’ll focus your development resources: on technology or on business models. This is illustrated in a second matrix (figure 2), pulled from this month’s Harvard Business Review. In crafting your innovation strategy, it might be helpful to combine both of these matrices to determine whether your approach to innovation will be transformative and architectural (focused on new markets with new products where you’re creating new technical capabilities in your organization and designing new business models), sustaining and routine (focused on your existing markets and enhancing your existing products with your current technological capabilities and business models), or somewhere in between. What’s most important is to identify the needs of your organization, make choices, and devise a clear plan to follow.

The last step on how to manage innovation is creating a framework design (in his talk, Bill recommended using or adapting phase-gate methodology) and building the toolkit you need to implement managed innovation in your organization. Resources such as those available on theinnographer.com and through books like Wiley’s own Business Model Generation and Value Proposition Design are really helpful in putting together a framework and toolkit that works best for your organization.

Introducing an innovation strategy and building an innovation management approach involves a fair bit of time up-front, but, in the context of the constantly changing environment that we are living in, adopting a structured approach to innovation can be a powerful decision for your organization.

I couldn’t say it any better myself. (I know – I tried, and Twitter confirmed it for me.)

Image Credit/Source:Bloomua/Shutterstock

    Verity Warne
Verity Warne
Senior Marketing Manager, Author Marketing, Wiley
Rebecca Lawrence
Rebecca Lawrence of F1000
Source: Rebecca Lawrence

Q. Can you tell us a little about your background and how F1000 came about?

A. I originally trained as a pharmacist and then did a PhD in cardiovascular pharmacology in Nottingham. I had a particular interest in drug discovery and the pharma industry and so moved from there into publishing at Elsevier, where I stayed for 7 years and ultimately headed up the Drug Discovery Group. I joined F1000’s founder and serial publishing entrepreneur, Vitek Tracz, 9 years ago, initially in a company called Current BioData, a drug intelligence service for the pharma industry, but then moved across to F1000 in 2009.

F1000 (Faculty of 1000) launched in 2002 and was initially set up as an expert-based article recommendation service across biology and medicine. We now have over 11,000 members of the F1000 Faculty, comprising 6000 world-leading names and another 5000 more junior up-and-coming scientists. As they read the literature, they identify those published papers that they think are particularly interesting and important, and provide a rating (1 to 3, all positive as they are looking for the best papers) and a short summary of why they think the article is important. Interestingly, the majority of the papers selected are not in the very top-Impact Factor journals.

More recently, when I joined F1000, I launched a couple of new services, F1000Posters, an open access repository of posters and slides, and just over 2 years ago, F1000Research, an open science publishing platform. A few days ago, we also launched the F1000Workspace, a significant suite of tools that help researchers discover literature, collaborate with colleagues, and write their grants and papers.

Q. What is F1000Research?

A. The idea behind F1000Research is to transform the way science is communicated by removing the extensive delays between when they write up their results and when others actually get to benefit from these results (typically 6 months at best in the traditional system, and regularly 1-2 years). Furthermore, we are trying to remove much of the bias present in the traditional anonymous pre-publication peer review process and create a transparent process that enables scientists to share all their findings.

We run an author-led approach. Once a paper is submitted to us, an internal editorial team checks it to make sure it meets a set of basic criteria (the authors are from a recognized institution, it meets standard ethical requirements, it is readable, not plagiarized etc) and then we publish the article. It is then citable but very clearly labeled (including within the article title itself) that it is awaiting peer review. The article then goes into a formal invited peer review process, but all the referee reports and the referee names are published alongside the article. Authors can revise the article as many times as they wish, and once the article achieves a certain level of positive review, it is indexed in PubMed, Scopus, and many other major bibliographic databases. We also require that the data underlying all results are made publicly available and stored in a suitable database (with the exception of data where there are anonymity or security concerns,of course). We publish all article types and encourage the publication of negative/null data, small studies, attempts at replications etc.

Q. What are the benefits of “publish first and peer review later.”

A. One major benefit is speed: the approach brings our times down to a median of 7 days between final manuscript and publication, and 28 days to receive 2 referee reports. This is important as it means science can move at a much faster pace because other labs can learn about new discoveries quickly, make their own assessments of them, attempt to replicate them, and then try and build on them.

The open and ongoing peer review process that this publication model enables also brings several advantages. Referees cannot hide behind a curtain of anonymity, and several studies have shown that referees are no less critical in an open environment, but are a lot more courteous and constructive in their feedback. Referees can also get credit for the time and effort required to do the report (and can even now put it on their ORCID profiles). It enables others to benefit from the discussion between the referees and authors, and good referee reports typically provide a lot of valuable context. Readers (and even the public) can benefit from seeing that there are also often quite different points of view on a particular finding, which especially benefits younger researchers and those moving into a new field. Moreover, younger researchers can also benefit from the educational aspect of learning how to perform good peer review.

Q. How will the transfer pilot with Wiley journals work?

A. The pilot offers authors whose articles don’t meet the specific criteria for publication in five Wiley journals (Journal of Separation Science; Electrophoresis; Plant, Cell & Environment; Journal of Medical Virology; Pediatric Dermatology) the option to submit their manuscripts to F1000Research, thereby giving the authors a streamlined process to get their work quickly and easily published online. The authors will receive an email asking them if they wish to have their manuscript transferred, and if they accept, the relevant files will be moved across without the need for any changes at that stage.

Q. What happens to articles once they are transferred to F1000?

A. The F1000Research team will then do a rapid assessment of the article and confirm to the authors within 7 days whether their article meets our basic criteria and if so, they will be offered publication. Authors might at this point be asked for additional information such astheir source data, if it wasn’t included in the original submission.

Q. What are the benefits to Wiley authors?

A. It means that authors do not need to waste time hunting for another suitable specialist journal for their work. Assuming their work passes the basic checks of F1000Research, their work will be published simply and quickly, regardless of how ‘big’ and newsworthy their studies are. It will be made available free for everyone to access through an open access environment, and they can move on to their next research project.

Q. What’s next for F1000Research?

A. Now that we have launched F1000Workspace, we are developing tighter integration through a one-click submission route from F1000Workspace to F1000Research. We will also develop many other tools to improve the refereeing and versioning experience using the F1000Workspace capabilities. We will also be continuing our work to develop and integrate with tools that enable in-article data visualization and manipulation, and expand our new concept of living figures.

    Luk Cox
Luk Cox
   3-D artist and illustrator

"Safe is good for sidewalks and swimming pools but life requires risk if we are to get anywhere."

 

This inspiring quote by author and motivational speaker Simon Sinek made something click in my head. As a rigid process with a rigid structure, scientific publishing hasn’t changed much in the last few decades. It is safe for the author and publisher, and has always been done like this, but are we getting anywhere?

 

 

Graphical abstract
Graphical abstract from Kim et al., Journal of Cheminformatics,
DOI: 10.1186/1758-2946-4-28

The “optimized” format of title, abstract, introduction, materials and methods, results, discussion, and references certainly works. It has proven its efficacy countless times. This form of publishing is so obvious that it is not even challenged anymore. This unquestioning acceptance might be rather strange for scientists, but it feels safe.

 

We all know that safe is the enemy of innovation. Even in the innovative field of science, most of us are constantly looking for a safe place. This is perfectly understandable, as most of the time during our evolution we were living in dangerous environments and finding a safe place was the best or only strategy for survival. To survive in dangerous environments, it is key to keep a low profile and not attract attention. Nowadays, this constant life-threatening danger is gone, but our behavior hasn’t changed a lot. Even though the threats are of a totally different caliber, we’re always still looking for safety, which often equates to fitting in.

 

Maybe the real danger of today is the false feeling of safety. We tell ourselves that it is safe to do things (like scientific publishing) as they have always been done. But the danger is that innovative strategies might disrupt long-lasting standards with incredible speed, as happened when digital photography moved analog photography out of the market, or when the music industry wasturned upside down in a matter of months by new ways of music distribution.

 

We live in a media landscape where information consumption has changed drastically in the last two decades. Today, most information uptake happens via online media and we digest the news in little chunks rather than big bodies of text. The time is now for some innovative journals to come up with new ways of scientific publishing. One step in this direction is already happening with the emerging phenomenon of graphical abstracts.

 

 

Graphical abstract from Korzycka et al., Chemical Science, DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/C4SC03775H    
Graphical abstract from Korzycka et al., Chemical Science,

A graphical abstract is a single and concise visual representation of the presented research. It should be a summary of the main findings of the paper captured in a specially designed figure.

 

That is how most, if not all, scientific journals communicate the meaning of a graphical abstracts to authors. It makes sense. It is a step towards making the information more easily accessible and it communicates the main message in short time frame. A picture is worth a thousand words, remember.

 

A graphical abstract is certainly not a replacement for the classical way of publishing research, but it is a welcome addition. But yet, not everybody in the scientific community is pleased with this new format. One of the most frequent objections is the extra work. Authors often see it as just another figure. As a result, most graphical abstracts are an upgraded version of the conclusion slide of the talk that goes along with the publication.

 

I’m not sure if this very helpful for the perceived quality of the publication and I’m not sure if this is an improvement at all. But let’s try to approach it from another angle.

 

Change always creates opportunity. However, most people don’t like change, because change is often seen as unsafe. Most people avoid new things and prefer to stick to the methods they know very well, the safe place. For them change creates a chance for failure and the resulting fear overwhelms them so much that they don’t see the huge opportunity anymore. The innovative scientist, on the other hand, embraces change, reaches out to the unsafe and unknown, and is prepared to fail. She knows that the possibility of failure is the only way to success.

 

This might sound as if the reckless scientist, the one who tries it all, will succeed. This is of course flawed. The rationale and motivation to try new approaches have to be sound. The motivation has to come from the inside and the scientist who will be open to new approaches needs to be informed and persuaded adequately. Here it often goes wrong.

 

Most publishing authors know “what” a graphical abstract is. Journals that publish graphical abstracts describe nicely what it is on their websites. However, it is much more difficult to answer the more important questions “why” and “how.” This information is absent on most publishers’ websites and is not mentioned in the instructions to authors.

 

It is understandable that, without a clear rationale, not many authors see the added value or the opportunity for them. Consequently, the only thing they see is the extra work. Isn’t it much more motivating to do the work when we have a good reason?

 

If authors publish a research paper that cost them endless experiments and months of hard work, presumably they would like people to read their findings. In fact, it may be considered their moral obligation to reach as many fellow scientists as possible. It is an essential aspect of effective science communication and it is key to the advancement of science.

 

The huge and unique opportunity a graphical abstract offers to authors is the possibility to drive traffic to their research. It is more than a summary of research. Authors should envision it as the marketing message, the advertisement of their work. It is the authors’ chance to capture their audience’s attention, to make them so interested that they want to read more. If authors want to succeed they’ll need to adapt their communication to the fast-evolving media landscape, including social media platforms. Graphical abstracts are very well suited for this.

 

If authors start with this motivation and rationale, the next step is to define how this can be achieved with a graphical abstract. Authors should focus on design, composition, and aesthetics to emphasize the most important findings. People get inspired by beauty, and aesthetic compositions are easier to understand. Authors should consider the context in which the graphical abstract will be seen. This is mostly online (in contrast to a seminar room, which is likely the venue for which the PowerPoint slide now submitted as a graphical abstract was first created). Authors should try to put themselves in the shoes of potential readers and find out what sparks their interest. A good starting point is for authors to look at themselves, and consider what attracts their own attention.

 

Giving a different focus and purpose to a graphical abstract—opening the door to one’s research versus making a concise visual representation of the paper—creates an opportunity for authors to get more people to read their research. The innovative scientist who uses this knowledge and optimizes a graphical abstract to attract the right attention will benefit. Her work will be seen by more people, possibly leading to more interest in her research. This may lead to unexpected collaborations and more funding, citations, and recognition.

 

All this works as a positive feedback loop, accelerating the momentum to get even more opportunities. The innovative scientist values her research and takes the leap.

 

The post above was reprinted with permission from April 2015 edition of the International Society of Managing and Technical Editors newsletter.

    Jenny Peng
Jenny Peng
   Editor, Wiley

Your article has finally been accepted and published after rounds of peer review, revision, and back-and-forth conversations with editors. At last, subscribers to the journal can visit and read your new article. Yet as you stare at the share-to-social-media buttons and how-to-cite links hovering near your content, a bit of anxiety begins to creep in: Will they read it?

 

Publishers like Wiley handle most of the next-steps after an article’s publication, such as its marketing and distribution. They accomplish this through a variety of resources, including sales teams and marketing teams and digital strategy teams. But is there anything that you, as the author, can do?

 

Kudos That’s where Kudos comes in. Kudos is a new, award-winning platform with whom Wiley has partnered to give authors more control  over the marketing of their article. According to Kudos’s FAQs, “In a pilot version of Kudos during 2013, researchers using the Kudos  sharing tools saw an average increase in downloads of their publications of 19% compared to a control group.”

 

So, what does Kudos do? As they put it, the platform lets you maximize the usage and impact of your publications in 4 simple steps:

 

1. Explain your work and tell readers what it’s about and why it’s important.
2. Enrich your publication by adding links to related materials.
3. Share a link to your publication by email and social media.
4. Measure the impact of your publication performance.

 

Every year, the amount of research available, and competing for readers’ attention, continues to grow. Using Kudos, you can give yourself a leg up by building a profile for your article. To get started, sign up for a free Kudos account. If you’re a Wiley author registered on Wiley Author Services, your publication will automatically be linked to your new Kudos account. Those authors not on Wiley Author Services can claim authorship by manually searching for their articles (by DOI, article title, or author name) within Kudos.

 

After claiming your article, you can begin to develop its profile by including descriptions of your article and its importance. Adding these short summaries and other metadata can help potential readers more easily identify the article contents and gauge its applicability to their research interests.

 

Do you have a video abstract or other related media? What about a publicly available data set? Kudos lets you combine that information into one location. From there, the service provides you with additional tools and tips to share your profile via a generated hyperlink. This link can then be distributed through social media platforms, email, or blogs and webpages.

 

To help you measure the amount of interest resulting from these shares, Kudos offers a variety of metrics. These include publication views, full text downloads, social media shares, Altmetrics, and citations. An author dashboard lets you easily track and sort this data, as the platform simultaneously provides suggestions for what else you can do to further enhance your article’s performance.

 

Not sure what those numbers mean? If you need a bit more context, additional benchmarking tools allow you to compare your article activity to that of your peers’ articles, providing you with the opportunity to adapt and develop your article promotion strategy accordingly.

 

As of March 2015, over 35,000 users, including 7,000 Wiley authors, have now signed up for Kudos. Don’t let your article get lost in the mix. Join Kudos, and begin showcasing your article today.

 

A version of this blog post was previously published at the Society for Research on Adolescence blog on June 4, 2015.

    Sarah Andrus
Sarah Andrus
Business Development Manager, Wiley

181557373_232994400_232994402_256224451 (1).jpgWith the ongoing pressure societies and membership organizations face to retain and recruit new members, it’s very important to stand out from the crowd. In a previous blog ‘Meeting the eLearning needs of Generation Y’ my colleague, Trina Cody, highlighted the significance of Millennials and how without acknowledging the learning preferences of this largest generational group within the workforce, societies are in serious jeopardy.

In addition, robust learning strategies and solutions enable societies to establish themselves as the authority on training and development in their specialist areas. So, an eLearning platform is a great way to engage your members and enhance their perception of your society as a learning provider. With all this in mind, it’s vitally important to truly incorporate your eLearning offering into your brand, and here’s why…

1. Easily recognizable accreditation

Members and potential members get to know your society from whatever you do already, be it publications, events, policy making, grants or benevolent funds. So, as long as all your learning courses and modules are branded, you’ll have at least one added string to your bow, and a substantial one at that - easily, recognizable accreditation-which will only add value and strength to your brand.

2. It adds prestige

And, of course, if you want to reward your members, make sure any certification is also on brand. Once they have passed a module or achieved a qualification, they will want and expect some recognition. Anything they download from your platform should be consistent with your brand. This will present an authoritative society, adding kudos to the individual and the organization. But also, there is a bigger picture here. For friends and colleagues of those successfully accredited, it will encourage an ‘I want one’ mentality, which can only be good for recruiting and retaining members.

3. It breeds familiarity

If you get the look and feel of your eLearning platform right, and when I say right, I mean recognizably from your society-i.e. a seamless extension of your primary website, consistent in tone, length and style-you’ll portray a consistent brand. Members love familiarity – don’t lead them off the path.

4. Finally, it’s a great story to tell

All of this can be maximized on social media, plus any fora or blogs your society makes use of. This brings me back to the beginning of this piece and the rise of the Millennials. Younger generations will appreciate a strong social media presence, and it may be the only way they keep up with what you are doing. So be sure to use social media to publicize what you have done with eLearning, and draw members to your platform whenever you can.

Societies are often complex – it can take a while for a member to be aware of everything you do, so make it easy for them. Increase awareness, to increase membership, to increase revenue. Branding is fundamental to all of this. How your platform looks, feels and engages with everything else you offer is vital.

To find out more on how Millennials value learning as a member benefit, download this infographic.

Image Credit/Source:denphumi/iStockphoto

    Anne-Marie Green
Anne-Marie Green
Content and Community Marketing Manager, Wiley
Live graphic recording at SSP 2015 Source: Anne-Marie Green
Live graphic recording at SSP 2015
Source: Anne-Marie Green

It started before my flight even took off from Boston’s Logan airport. Scanning the news stand, I spotted the Time Magazine headline: “What happened to vacation in America?” It was no shock of course, but I immediately picked it up and took a quick look inside. It reaffirmed what we all already know: our professional lives have spilled over into personal lives in a major way. We’re working when we’re on vacation and, as a result, sometimes we’re on mental vacation when we’re at work. Because, let’s face it, we can’t be “Professional Joe” (or Joanne) all the time. As these lines between our work selves and our private selves start to blur, there’s a crucial thing to remember about ourselves and our customers.

We’re all humans first.

The official theme of last week’s Society for Scholarly Publishing Meeting in Crystal City, VA was “The New Big Picture” and while there was no lack of discussion on change in the industry, emerging technologies, new services for researchers and more, that particular underlying theme kept cropping up.

With the first keynote from Charles Watkinson, Librarian at the University of Michigan Library and Director of Michigan University Press, we heard how we publishing professionals can become narrow in our thinking as we become more specialized in our roles. Yet, he contends that if we can just implement the “edge effect” by bringing various functions together and working at the edges of our fields, we have the opportunity to innovate and learn from one another. His examples focused on how bringing ideas and models from the journals world such as new formats, open access and author-pays models to scholarly monographs can transform a medium that has been under threat for some time.

In Thursday’s keynote interview with Ken Auletta, who has covered the media landscape for The New Yorker since 1992, he reminded us that there is a human factor behind most major business decisions. He described cable media magnate John Malone who in 1999 sold TCI, the largest cable company at the time, to AT&T because his wife wanted him to spend more time with her. Auletta emphasized that human behavior is what influences how quickly the media landscape is changing. He recounted that the New York Times reports that 50% of the traffic to its online version comes through social media, and with readers increasingly accessing content on mobile devices,, the challenge of generating advertising revenue while maintaining a good user experience is great.

A session on “The Researcher’s New Big Picture” allowed researchers, professors and grad students to share how they’re currently working and how publishers can better support their efforts. Their objectives aren’t new: tenure and funding. Also not new is their lack of time. The panelists want maximum visibility for their research, but, as one Microbiology researcher on the panel pointed out, when it comes to social media promotion, he wants to know what the reward for his time will be.

There was palpable surprise from the audience when two of the four panelists stated that they didn’t know what altmetrics were and only two had registered for ORCiD identifiers. It's clear that until researchers understand precisely how new tools will help them achieve their goals, they are in no rush to adopt them.

Another revelatory session was “Chat with Librarians”, which afforded publishers and others in the industry the opportunity to sit across the table from librarians and ask them anything. The range of services librarians spoke of offering their users was staggering. From using APIs to text-mine research, to advising academics on how to start open access journals, to helping researchers get published, it’s clear that librarians play a crucial role in nurturing the research process and making the day-to-day lives of academics easier. Beyond this, librarians told us that they need to show administrators that they are serving their university’s mission. Anne Seymour, Director of the Welch Medical Library at Johns Hopkins University, described the daunting objective of demonstrating the impact of research-i.e. how has research at Johns Hopkins affected health outcomes overall? To put it simply: how is research changing human lives?

Closing plenary speaker Jennifer Lawton, former CEO of Makerbot Industries, also acknowledged our humanity in her address on how to succeed and be successful. “It’s your life, so work hard to make it what you want.”

Whether they’re at work or at the beach, it's worth remembering that this is what our customers and partners are striving to do every day.

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