Stephen Jezzard
Stephen Jezzard
Advertising and Business Development, Wiley 
Gavin Sharrock
Gavin Sharrock
Advertising and Business Development, Wiley
Source: bikeriderlondon/Shutterstock
Source: bikeriderlondon/Shutterstock

In 2014, Outsell interviewed 20 scholarly and professional societies and found that 61% of their revenue was derived from publishing. The sources of that revenue, which are primarily driven by subscriptions, are under a great deal of pressure however, and societies are increasingly looking for other ways to make income. Advertising can be a great way of doing this, by giving societies the resources to fulfill their objectives and fund other initiatives. Data from Kantar Media’s Journal Ad Review shows that professional healthcare advertising in journals and related publications was up 4.5% in the first half of 2015 when compared with the same period in 2014, encouraging growth in what is a tough and competitive market. Print offerings are still the most important advertising vehicles to healthcare and life sciences marketers, and they account for the bulk of marketing budgets; however, advertising trends have evolved from traditional print ads to new marketing strategies that include content marketing and digital advertising.

The definition of content marketing often depends on whom you are talking to; According to the Content Marketing Institute, “Content marketing is the marketing and business process for creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action”. When appropriately aligned with academic content, the message is very powerful. As a form of advertising, content marketing is effective at creating product awareness and educating consumers.

The clear direction for advertising is toward digital, with the internet being the fastest-growing segment of advertising through to 2019, driven by rapid rises in mobile and video advertising. Other trends in online advertising include using tools such as Google AdWords to create online advertising campaigns, search engine optimization (SEO -- the process of using keywords to get a website to rank higher in results as opposed to using AdWords), social media, display ads and website banner ads.

Some societies have told us that prefer not to accept advertising formats such as cover tips, cover wraps, and belly bands because they think these formats may tarnish the society’s image, or appear too commerce-oriented. Our experience is that this isn’t the case, and readers think that a reasonable level of advertising is perfectly acceptable. Many prestigious journals such as The Lancet, NEJM, and JAMA regularly feature these types of promotions..

We’re all consumers, we live in a consumer society, and every day we are exposed to marketing messages, both subconsciously and consciously, that help us make decisions and inform us of choices available to us. Advertising can help in creating more informed and better educated consumers. Incorporating relevant and well placed advertising in society journals is not only a good source of revenue for societies, it can also help fund the society’s vision, act as a service to members, and help professionals achieve their goals of widely disseminating information to make the world a better place.

The rise of open research data

Posted Aug 26, 2015
    Jon Tennant
Jon Tennant
PhD student, Imperial College London

As a junior researcher in the UK, it has given me great pleasure over the last few years to see the dramatic development of open access publishing. Most major research funders in the UK now require public access to published research articles in one form or another, and many other research intensive nations across the globe are following suit.shutterstock_265157858_339611501_339611505_256224451 (1).jpg

Along with this global increase in public access to papers, there has been a gear shift in demand for the availability of additional outputs of research, including code, videos, software, and raw data. One of the most recent steps in increasing access to these outputs has been the RECODE project for researchers in the EU, which seeks to develop an open data ecosystem through shifting research practices. With progress being made in the USA too, the wheels are truly in motion towards a global shift towards open access to all research outputs.

For researchers, there is a clear incentive for making your research data open – for example, through enhanced citations of your research, but also in making the clear statement that you are not afraid to have your research openly scrutinized and built upon. It can be very difficult to trust the research in a paper, when there is a refusal to make the underlying data openly available.

The recent partnership between Wiley and Figshare is a more than welcome development. As Wiley is one of the dominant publishers of global research, liberating the data behind those publications will be a great advantage for the development of ‘open science’. Wiley joins other publishers, such as PLOS, in recognizing the value of open research data. There are several levels to achieving open access to research data, and embracing the full power of the Web, and this partnership provides important steps to achieving this. There is still a dependence on researchers to making their data available in appropriate formats, and in a transparent context.

From a personal perspective, Figshare have always been one of my favorite players in the rise of open scholarship. Founded by Mark Hahnel based on frustrations in not getting full recognition for all of the outputs of his PhD, it has grown into a platform where pretty much any digital output from research can be freely and easily shared. Most importantly, from a researcher’s perspective, anything which is shared is citable through possession of a DOI (a unique digital object identifier), and protected through appropriate use of Creative Commons licenses.

With this new partnership, and the increasing global interest in open data, comes additional questions regarding appropriate data sharing and citation practices, as well as the recognition of outputs beyond papers when it comes down to academic assessment criteria. As many funders now require data to be more openly available, it comes down to the combination of these funders to make sure that credit for making data open is given, and for researchers to recognize that research outputs go beyond the generation of a pdf manuscript.

One of the biggest hurdles to cross is making data re-usable – simply having data available is not much use. What is needed is transparency in data creation and development, and the creation of community-based data sharing standards that allow other researchers to be able to re-use and innovate using open data. Part of this relies on making sure shared data is machine readable, and with transparent methods regarding its use. Journals should make sure that methods sections are suitably detailed, and form the core of manuscripts, instead of being neglected to a short note towards the end of papers.

The next step for publishers and funders is to enforce the sharing of the data behind publications. There is a clear role for academic editors here, in making sure that data is available via a public archive such as Figshare, upon publication of a manuscript, as well as in encouraging data citation. Where needed, appropriate embargoes can be applied to datasets, which can be important for early career researchers who want to maximize personal usage of the data they have generated. As Figshare provides an institutional service, this could be a great way to achieve support for open data practices closer to home for researchers.

There really is no excuse for not having data openly available to support papers these days. With this, researchers will be able to re-analyze and develop data, and open new doors for research. By embracing the principles underpinning open access to research data, researchers ultimately enhance global scientific discourse, and who knows what we might be able to achieve!

Image Credit/Source:Housh/Shutterstock

    Verity Warne
Verity Warne
Senior Marketing Manager, Author Marketing, Wiley

Lachlan Coin completed a Bachelors degree of Science at the Australian National University in 1999, and a PhD at the University of Cambridge, in bioinformatics in 2005.  He worked as a research fellow in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Imperial College London and in 2012 took up a position as group leader at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience at the University of Queensland. Lachlan is co-founder of Academic Karma, a new platform for peer review.


Source: Lachlan Coin
Source: Lachlan Coin

1. Can you explain the concept of Academic Karma and tell us how it got started?

Academic Karma was born out of 14 years worth of frustration with peer review as a reviewer and  author. I realized that peer-review inefficiencies are the main reason academic publishing is both frustratingly slow and expensive. The main reason for this seems to be the difficulty in finding willing, qualified reviewers, because the rewards for publishing are much greater than the rewards for reviewing.

We thought – what if there was a peer-review currency, which we call 'Karma', earned by doing timely review and spent by getting manuscripts reviewed. If every academic did as much peer review as they demand from others in order to maintain a positive Karma, the system would become self-regulating. We think this would make open-access publishing much cheaper and also much faster. We really don't want people to do more reviewing, on average, than they currently do, or to prioritize reviewing over other important time-sensitive work. We are just proposing that academics do as much reviewing as they are consuming review, and that they only agree to do it when they can turn it around in a reasonable time-frame.

2. How does Academic Karma work?

One important aspect is helping users keep a track of their 'Karma' over the last 5 years. We do this by linking up with ORCID to calculate how much Karma has been consumed. We also provide tools for users to upload their reviewing history to calculate how much Karma has been earned. We list all of the researchers who have a positive reviewing Karma at http://academickarma.org/backbone. We think these academics deserve to be rewarded for doing their fair share – so next time you are asked to review a paper from someone on this list please agree to do it, and try to do it in a timely manner!

The second important aspect is helping users indicate their expertise and willingness to peer review to editors. We provide tools for editors to use this information to identify and invite reviewers. We have built a cloud-based peer review platform so that editors can manage the entire peer-review process through Academic Karma.

Reviewers are emailed a review form customized to the requirements of the journal. The completed review is sent simultaneously to the author and to the editor so that the author gets faster feedback.

We wanted our platform to be a place where reviewers could do all their reviewing in one place. To enable this, reviewers can forward a review invitation from any journal to 'invite@academickarma.org', and subsequently do the review through Academic Karma.

When the paper is finally published, we email the reviewers to let them know and ask them if they would like to make their review openly accessible on the Academic Karma manuscripts page (http://academickarma.org/manuscripts).

3. Are you measuring peer reviewer performance (speed/quality of review) and if so, what are you noticing?

We have been measuring the time reviewers take between agreeing to review and returning their reviews. This has been averaging about 8 to 9 days. Our users have asked us to measure review quality too – this is one of the next things we intend to implement.

4. What has been the reaction from researchers?

We have a number of `power-users' who regularly use Academic Karma to return their reviews. We are really trying to make sure the platform works well and addresses the needs of a smaller user base before trying to scale up. We also want to avoid mass email marketing campaigns.

5. Does Academic Karma help reviewers to get academic credit for their review efforts?

The main recognition is highlighting reviewers who have done their 'fair-share' of reviewing. We hope that ultimately this will lead to them getting their own papers reviewed faster.

6. What has been the reaction from editors? Is there any hesitancy to accept reviews from reviewers using Academic Karma?

Most editors are supportive of what we are doing and are happy to accept reviews sent using Academic Karma. One issue when we first started was that we used the same review form for all journals, which created problems for editors, but shifting to customized review forms has solved this problem.

7. What is the biggest challenge faced by Academic Karma?

Peer review is currently in a 'vicious cycle' whereby it doesn't matter how diligent a reviewer you are, it doesn't help you get your own papers reviewed well or quickly. The biggest challenge we face is how to turn this 'vicious cycle' into a 'virtuous cycle' in which diligent, timely reviewers get access to fast, high quality peer review for their own papers. To kick-start this, we are encouraging the community to prioritize reviewing papers from reviewers with positive karma (http://academickarma.org/backbone), which will hopefully provide an incentive for all academics to do their fair share of reviewing.

    James Cockerill
James Cockerill
Campaigns Manager, Sense About Science

Only half of all clinical trials have ever reported results; the useful information that was gleaned from these experiments has never been made available. What does this mean? It means all of us are at risk of being exposed to poor treatment decisions. It means doctors and researchers are missing opportunities for new and better medicine, and it means patients are being enrolled in clinical trials that don’t need repeating. The problem is as urgent as it is serious. With every day that passes, information on what was done and what was found in the missing trials is at increased risk of being lost forever, as papers perish, storage disks fail, companies merge, and people with knowledge of these hidden trials retire.172934995_335450922_335450925_256224451 (1).jpg

But there is hope. In 2013 the AllTrials campaign was launched. AllTrials is calling for every clinical trial, past and present, to be registered and their results reported. In the two years since launch, 86,000 people and over 600 organizations have joined the campaign. Among many successes, we changed the law in Europe. Starting in 2016, it’s going to be law that drug clinical trials are publicly registered and results reported.

Then, on July 29th 2015, fifty US patient groups, medical societies, universities and consumer groups representing over 500,000 patients, doctors and researchers came together to launch AllTrials in the USA. On the day of the launch, patient activist AnnaMarie Ciccarella spoke about patients who volunteer for clinical trials. “We provided our bodies, our tissue samples, our data. I’ve heard the same sentiment expressed many times from patients in clinical trials, ‘This may not help me, but it may help another person.’ It’s time to honor that sentiment.”

Steven Woloshin MD, Professor at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth said “Imagine there was an election. Would you trust the results if only half of the votes were reported? Imagine if the winner of the election was the one who decided which half of the voting was reported? That would be crazy, but that’s what the situation is when trials are not reported.”

The National Physicians Alliance, committed to advancing the core values of the medical profession and represent 20,000 doctors said “Clinical trial results are bedrock to sound treatment decisions. Physicians and patients need to know what they yield. Trial secrecy betrays the trust not only of those who expect their participation to help future patients, but of the broader scientific community dedicated to curing disease.”

Many other organizations, involved in every facet of healthcare have written eloquently about why AllTrials matters to them. You can read what other supporters from the US, from the American Medical Student Association, to the Association for Pelvic Organ Prolapse Support, have to say about AllTrials by clicking here.

Since the campaign launched in the US, we have been contacted by dozens of organizations worried about hidden trial results, asking us what they can do to help. The problem of missing trial results in medicine is complex, and every type of organization, from patient support groups to professional medical societies have a different role to play to help fix the problem. Every sector of society has a vested interest in medicine too, so it’s no surprise that industries outside of medicine are joining the campaign.

Just recently, 85 investment firms representing more than $3.8 trillion partnered with AllTrials, and will meet with pharmaceutical companies to discuss their plans to register and report results from clinical trials, past, present and future. $3.8 trillion is a staggeringly large amount of money, highlighting the strong business case for trials transparency. Massive fines have been levied over misrepresented data, and approximately 30% of a drug company’s valuation is based on the results of its Phase-III trials. Naturally, the risk-averse investment community are very keen to make sure that none of these data arewithheld. The investors will do a great job of monitoring the companies’ compliance with their own promises too, so we’re delighted that they’ve joined the campaign.

AllTrials has achieved a lot, but there’s still so much more to do to fix the situation for future generations. What can you do to help? Join our campaign by signing our petition, and write to the directors of your organization and ask them to publicly support AllTrials. Please contact me to learn more about what you can do to help the campaign for clinical trials transparency.

Image Credit/Source:Oleg Prikhodko/Getty Images

    Helen Eassom
Helen Eassom
Author Marketing

You’ve put a great deal of time and effort into your manuscript, so you want to make sure that it stands the best possible chance of getting accepted into the journal of your choice. However, too many manuscripts are rejected because of easy to avoid errors or oversights. This infographic from Editage Insights (used with permission) lists some of the most common reasons for rejection, and offers some quick tips on how you can avoid making these mistakes.

8 reasons why journals reject manuscripts.PNG

Source: Editage
Source: Editage Insights

Why it's time for GPP3

Posted Aug 18, 2015
    Elizabeth Wager
Elizabeth Wager
Freelance Publications Consultant

shutterstock_196378274_292295826_292295827_256224451.jpgLast week saw the publication of the third version of Good Publication Practice for reporting company-sponsored research (imaginatively, we're calling it GPP3). To be useful, guidelines must reflect the current situation so they need periodic updating. The first GPP guideline (called GPP for pharmaceutical companies) appeared in 2003 and was revised to form GPP2 in 2010. It is probably obvious to anybody working in the healthcare or publishing sectors why updates were needed, as these industries have been affected by a slew of regulations, technological innovations and new business models. Society's expectations of corporate behavior, demands for greater transparency, and views about what constitute best practice are also changing, so the guideline needs to reflect these.

So, what's new about GPP3?

The biggest change is that we have introduced a set of principles. One problem with revising guidelines is that they tend to get longer rather than shorter with each update, and there's a danger of losing sight of the original core concepts in the verbiage or ending up with a document that is too long or detailed for some users. It is also impossible to "future-proof" any guideline and predict all the new situations that may arise before it's time for another update. We therefore felt it would be helpful to add some guiding principles which we imagine won't change radically over time, which should serve as a useful introduction to GPP, and might help respond to future challenges.

Examples of why GPP2 wasn’t “future-proof” and needed some updates are recent changes in the publications environment that have emerged or amplified in the last five years such as journal requirements for data sharing, and the US Physician Payments Sunshine Act. Although this Act doesn’t directly mention publications, public posting of information about payments to doctors (and about “transfers of value” which might include editing and writing assistance) may affect public perceptions of investigators’ and physicians’ attitudes towards publications developed with companies. Other differences between GPP2 and GPP3 are: new sections on plagiarism and data sharing, more detail about which studies should be published, and a new table on authorship.

How did we develop GPP3?

The first GPP guidelines arose from a meeting held in 1999 to discuss publication issues and concerns of drug companies, journal editors, and investigators. The meeting was organized by the Council of Biology Editors (since renamed the Council of Science Editors). Afterwards, a small group of people from a handful of drug companies got together informally and drafted some guidelines. We shared the draft guidelines with those who had been at the meeting and some major pharmaceutical companies where we had contacts. The guidelines were rejected by two major journals before being published in Current Medical Research & Opinion in 2003. One of the unfavorable reviewer comments was that the guideline was of limited interest and should be published in “an industry journal” (whatever that was). However, we didn’t give up hope and by 2010 the guidelines were firmly establishedand adopted by many companies as well as the journals that had initially rejected them. The International Society for Medical Publication Professionals (ISMPP) had been formed in 2005 and offered to coordinate an update, ably led by Chris Graf of Wiley. GPP2 was produced after much more extensive (and more professional) consultation, including 116 sets of comments from a wide range of reviewers. It was published in 2010 in The BMJ (one of the journals that had rejected the original GPP). GPP3 has again benefited from logistical support from ISMPP, including making the draft available for comment by 1,630 ISMPP members and about 1400 investigators and journal editors involved with the Medical Publishing Insights & Practices (MPIP) initiative. The author group for GPP3 was selected from over 200 applicants and comprised 15 people from 7 countries working in drug and biotech companies, communication agencies, publishers or as freelance publication professionals – very different from the three of us who authored the original GPP (with input from a working group of about 8 people at various times).

Having been involved from the start, I am delighted that GPP has been so widely accepted and grateful that organizations such as ISMPP and many individual volunteers have helped put it onto a professional footing from its small beginnings. The guideline is freely available from the Annals of Internal Medicine and ISMPP websites.

Image Credit/Source:Rawpixel/Shutterstock

    Ed Williamson
Ed Williamson
Society Marketing, Wiley

As Tom Reiser, Executive Director of the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis, mentioned in our last post; ASAE’s annual meeting is a time for association executives to be stimulated and inspired and speaker Josh Linkner did just that. He talked about not becoming complacent.

Don’t become complacent

In his Keynote speech, Josh Linkner used his home city  of Detroit as an example of the dangers of complacency. Detroit had once been a world leading innovator in the first half of last century in the automotive industry; Henry Ford had created the first mass production techniques that would change the world.  At the time, the Model-T was far more affordable and widened the market for cars. But then Detroit started to decline due to global competition; the city went from 1.8 million inhabitants in 1950 to 700k in 2013. The point that Tom Reiser observed was that associations are not known for swift change and would do well to watch out for disruption to their products and services by other, faster moving organizations.

So, don’t be disrupted, disrupt. Everybody is creative and employees should be given the chance to develop ideas. Start on a small level and see where it goes.

Content Marketing Strategy

According to speaker Joe Rominiecki, the session entitled, “Using Content Marketing to Engage Members and Grow Your Organization” was bursting with delegates. Societies and associations, particularly scholarly ones, have plenty of content, unlike a lot of for-profits, and now that there is so much demand for content as a marketing strategy, it can be seen as a distinct advantage for societies and associations. The challenge is that the content needs to be presented in an easily digested, easy to access format. In other words it needs to be repurposed. This is no mean feat.  It takes time and effort to create video content, slideshares, Facebook posts, Linkedin posts, and 500 word blog posts that are succinct. Beyond that, the content needs to not only be shareable so that people can view it quickly and easily, it  also needs to be very engaging, which is the art. Rominiecki, again, reminds us that the challenge here is made even more difficult because each member absorbing the content likes to do it in a different way and has a different reason for doing it. Thus, the member decides what engagement looks like.

One size fits all – it does not

Tom Reiser made the point in his interview that we now have four generations in the work place, which means among your membership and your society workforce. This brings the challenge of catering to a variety of different preferences amongst the membership; therefore the “one size fits all” membership model is truly dead!

Compass point – define your mission

Holly Byrd Duncan, in our previous post, described it as the organizations elevator pitch. The compass statement gives you a definition so you have a constant reminder of why you are doing what you are doing. That means every time you make a decision or send a membership engagement email, it is at the very core and is the boiled down essence of what you are trying to do. This is very powerful. It will lead members to do more, it will attract new members and it will keep you pointed in the right direction. Hence compass point!

Until next year, where association executives from all over the globe hot foot it to Salt Lake City, Utah, that's a wrap for ASAE 15.

Below are some notable tweets from attendees and speakers of this year's meeting.


    Andrew Moore
Andrew Moore
Editor-in-Chief Bioessays and Inside the Cell

So, you’ve agreed to review that paper from so-and-so et al. From the title and abstract, it sounded worth your time, and you really were going to do it before July 15th. But now you’ve received a reminder from editorial that you’re overdue with your report. Worse still, you’re sitting at the departure gate waiting for a flight to Chicago for a large neuroscience meeting. Your Internet connection is so slow that you can’t even download the paper anymore. And you know that once you’re at the meeting you’ll have neither the time nor peace to read and review the paper properly. What to do?536908015_292811636_292811640_256224451 (1).jpg

The first thing is quite simple: immediately inform editorial of your situation. Though you know that editorial has invited others to review the paper, my advice, for safety’s sake, is to assume that your report is the rate-limiting step in the decision-making process. In fact, the longer you wait the more that is true. If the review is very late, and the editor has received no communication, she or he might feel forced to invite another reviewer. But that is the worst possible scenario. It can easily take a week to get another reviewer to agree; then a further 10 to 20 days for reviewing and submitting the report– a missed review deadline can easily lead to a delay of up to one month in peer review. This sounds like a rare calamity, but trust me, it happens quite frequently. As in so many other areas, communication is key. Often, editorial can only guess at the reason for the delayed report - but as reviewer you know the reason. It is in everyone’s best interests if you are able to let editorial know immediately if a delay is likely, thus avoiding the awkward decision for editorial of when to cut its losses, but incur an even longer delay for the decision that the author is eagerly awaiting.

If you find that something unavoidable will delay your review, but you still wish to help fulfill the commitment, you could consider whether, for example, the journal is receptive to reviewer delegation and a senior post-doc in your group could perform the review instead. Always let editorial know in advance of report submission that you’ve done this. Ideally, you should request that you be de-assigned in the manuscript tracking system and that the new reviewer be assigned in your place so that he or she receives the review request and necessary background information directly.

Sometimes, suspecting a serious delay early on in the process, editorial invites a few back-up reviewers. Consider the following scenario: one of the back-up reviewers then submits an assessment relatively quickly; but in the background, the delayed reviewer has almost finished the report.  Even without the delayed report, editorial has enough reports of sufficient quality to make a decision and does so – purely to avoid making the author(s) wait an undefined number of days more.

Can the delayed reviewer still contribute to the peer review of the paper? Yes. Although the submission system might now be barred for that reviewer, she/he should definitely get in touch with editorial and offer to submit the review by email. If the report is very divergent from those already submitted, this can put editorial in a difficult position – another reason not to delay! – but in the interests of thorough scientific critique, most editors will forward the report to the author(s) with an explanation. Though it would not be perceived as particularly fair to change the basic decision at this point, if a late report uncovers something fundamentally flawed or ethically unprofessional in the paper, the editor would be obliged to reconsider the decision completely. This puts the editor in a difficult position, which you’d obviously want to avoid.

So, you get the picture. Most of the problems of delayed peer review reports – while representing a disservice to the author(s) of the paper– put editorial between a rock and a hard place, because the editor is the face of the journal.

Editors are usually very understanding of all manner of genuine problems that hold up authors and reviewers. Don’t let inhibitions hold you back from admitting to a delay. And, if you have missed your deadline and have assured the editor that you still intend to submit a review, please do everything in your power to submit the review by the date you’ve promised, or earlier.

Image Credit/Source:Hero Images/Getty Images

    Anne-Marie Green
Anne-Marie Green
Communication Manager, Wiley

We asked Tom Reiser, Executive Director of the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis, and Holly Byrd-Duncan, Membership and Marketing Manager for the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine to give us their on-the-ground accounts of ASAE15.

Q. What were some of the standout sessions you attended at ASAE this year and what did you learn?



Tom Reiser of ISTH Source: Tom Reiser
Tom Reiser of ISTH
Source: Tom Reiser

Tom Reiser: As every year, ASAE provides excellent and broad education in all aspects of association management that helps us to do a better job and advance our organizations but also fuels our own professional development. The programming also inspires us to think outside the box, which I think is very important.

Four big ideas stood out for me:

1. The importance of challenging the status quo and the need for innovation. Associations, as much as businesses, must not take anything for granted or risk becoming obsolete. Josh Linkner, in his presentation on innovation at the opening session, illustrated this in a very entertaining and impactful way. Some of the models and products/services of associations may easily fall prey to disruptive approaches from either a different organization or a for-profit entity. Associations are not necessarily known for rapid change, so it becomes even more important to not become complacent.

2. A more strategic and thoughtful approach to international development. I was very energized by the focus on how to be successful internationally and to embrace and approach global opportunities. As we all know, this is not easy and some huge companies have failed. To a certain degree, associations may have it easier but at the same time they need to be smart and informed about it and they need to decide how to be most successful – be that through leading with mission or margin, membership and/or product. It's also very important to be culturally sensitive.

3. The importance of partnerships. This stood out for me as a topic that was interwoven throughout many tracks and presentations. Associations are often dealing with tight resources and limited experience when it comes to international dynamics, research, or particular products. Partnerships with other societies or with strategic vendors and partners are critical to the success of our activities.

4. The role of diversity as well as having four generations in the workplace. It was interesting and very relevant to look at the impact this has on organizational cultures as well as in society memberships (and the implications of these varied demographics' different preferences and expectations for engagement, communication, benefits, etc.).


Holly Byrd Duncan of SAEM Source: Holly Byrd Duncan
Holly Byrd Duncan of SAEM
Source: Holly Byrd Duncan

Holly Byrd-Duncan: The standout session for me was on Monday with "because I said I would" Alex  Sheen delivered a compelling message that captivated the entire audience. There was laughter and tears, forcing us all to look deeper into ourselves professionally and personally. For me, it reconfirmed the message that I try to deliver within SAEM: follow through on what you say you're going to do. Members deserve your commitment to them and success of the organization as a whole.

Q. Did any themes emerge at this year’s meeting? Did you have any a-ha moments?

TR: Certainly, there were the themes of innovation and how quickly your organization’s life could be disrupted. Actually it was particularly appropriate that this was a main theme for a meeting in Detroit because – as Linkner illustrated with his home city’s example – this used to be a city at the forefront of innovation globally that became complacent, and instead of looking ahead and reinventing itself, it was forced to deal with an incredible decline. But it is great to see that the city is starting to come back.

HBD: My ah-ha moment was during the "Magic of your Marketing Message". Recently SAEM developed our elevator pitch, because quite simply we didn't have one and there wasn't a consistent message being told throughout the organization. During this session, I realized that we hadn't been alone, many organizations are struggling with the same dilemma: "So, now we have an elevator pitch, what do we do with it?"  During this session they provided several additional steps that followed, laying the framework for SAEM to continue to progress in building our brand and awareness consistently. It was great to see we were on the right path, but now have tools to continue the journey

Q. What learning points can you put into practice as soon as you return to the office?

TR: I took many good and practical ideas away with me. One is to more precisely evaluate programs for their mission-focus, value for the organization and return. Another is to be more curious and challenge our thinking on some things we may have always done in a particular way (my team is not going to like this). I also now realize how much more carefully we need to listen to our partners and stakeholders in different countries (and, as in the case of India, even regions within countries). And lastly, how, particularly in our increasingly fast paced and “always connected” lives, meditation (formally and informally) is important to keep you grounded, focused and clear.

Q. What was the best part of having this year’s meeting in Detroit?

HBD: It allowed associations from across the country to see that Detroit has really come back and you should too....

TR: First of all, the best part was that it was in Detroit and what it means for this city that over 5,500 association professionals came here and supported its remarkable comeback. To a certain degree, this is the spirit many associations are representing.

As with the organizations we lead and work for, association professionals appreciate the opportunity to connect face to face, network, and learn from each other. We don’t make enough time for this throughout the year but it is very important to escape your own bubble to be inspired, challenged and stimulated for your own continued development and growth. It is also good to be reminded that you're not alone and that the opportunities and challenges you face are often similar to other organizations.

Thanks Tom and Holly!

    Anne-Marie Green 
Anne-Marie Green
Communication Manager, Wiley 

Before he headed off to Detroit for ASAE15, we spoke with Barry Pilson of TESOL about the importance of technology planning for societies and associations.


Barry Pilson of TESOL Source: Barry Pilson
Barry Pilson of TESOL
Source: Barry Pilson

Q. Can you tell us about your background and your current position?

A. I’ve been in the associations field for just about 20 years. I have always worked in marketing/communications/membership with a technology focus. I have a Master’s in Public and Environmental Affairs from Indiana University and earned my CAE in 2001. TESOL is a small staff of 20. I oversee marketing and communications efforts as well as membership and I serve as part of the association leadership team. I have been with TESOL almost 5 years.

Q. What are some of the challenges and opportunities TESOL faces?

A. Technology is a constant challenge, mostly from a cost point of view. Things are changing very quickly, and member expectations are high. Keeping member costs down is the other challenge of course. We’re comprised primarily of teachers and almost 30% of the membership is from outside the US. So, new forms of revenue are very important. But so is the continuous goal of high member value.

Q. You are a presenter on "The Role of the C-Suite in Technology Planning and Implementation." with Joanne Pineda at ASAE this week. How involved in technology planning should executive directors of societies and associations be?

A. We have five panelists, three CEOs and two Chief Information Officers from a variety of organization types. Each has a slightly different approach based on the size of their organizations and staff makeup. But in general, a CEO really needs to understand and have an association technology strategy. Some will be a bit more hands on (again association size matters here), others leave a lot to their CIOs.

Q. Do you feel that societies and associations are integrating new technologies quickly enough? Why or why not?

A. Associations have always been a bit behind the corporate world technology wise. Although in areas such as social media, sometimes they lead. Cost and expertise are the biggest hurdles for associations. Quick may not always be good. As more associations include technology in their overall strategic plans and their leadership makeup, the better and less behind we will be.

Q. Where have you seen societies succeed in their technology strategies?

A. I will say that those groups that transitioned early into online publishing probably have been far more stable than others that waited.

Q. If you could give one piece of advice to societies and associations as they embark on technology planning, what would it be?

A. I think you gave away the answer in your question: technology planning. Groups need to include technology in their strategic plans and think about technology with every new initiative. But they shouldn’t adopt technology for technology’s sake. It has to support an overall plan or objective.

Thanks Barry.

    Davina Quarterman
Davina Quarterman
Senior Marketing Manager, Society Marketing, Wiley
Wiley's Chris Graf and fellow winner at last year's 2014 5k fun run.  Source; asaecenter.org
Wiley's Chris Graf and fellow winner at last year's 2014 5k fun run.
Source; asaecenter.org

This weekend marks the start of the annual American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) conference, this year taking place in Detroit, MI. With a host of great speakers, talks and case studies from societies and associations across the US, an Opening Ceremony at the Henry Ford Museum and a 5K fun run (won by Wiley’s own Chris Graf last year!), not to mention the sounds of Motown magic, this is *the* event for the movers and shakers of the society and association world. Despite not being there in person, my team and I plan to follow along and participate via Twitter (@WileySocieties) and the Associations Now blog. As an avid Motown fan, you’ll have to forgive my continuous song references, but what better way to highlight some of the talks and speakers we’re looking forward to hearing about the most in the home of Motown?

As Marvin asked… ‘What’s Going On?

NY Times Bestseller and Wiley author Josh Linkner, shares wisdom on change and remaining competitive in the opening general session - Harnessing Innovation: Turning Raw Ideas into Powerful Results. As a successful tech entrepreneur and thought leader on innovation, he’ll be talking about the need for societies to embrace new methodologies and creative approaches to surviving and thriving in disruptive times. For me, Detroit seems like an apt setting to present a keynote on innovation and rebirth – as the origin of so much creative and inventive industries, the city now finds itself in the midst of a rebirth.

When I read the summary of Josh’s talk, one line in particular resonated: 'associations must harness fresh approaches to all aspects of their work.’ Our recent Membership Survey white paper also suggested that associations should consider new ways to engage with the evolving needs of their communities. In order to keep ahead of the changes in attitudes and behaviors among members, associations should first understand them and then respond by reaffirming or perhaps even reimagining what they offer their members. Association decision-makers could choose to make different choices about how they energize and engage with mixed-age communities. A topic we hope Sherry Turkle picks up on in her closing general session - Reclaiming Conversation in Our Digital World.

It Takes Two… or maybe Seventeen

Over the four day event, delegates will have the opportunity to hear over a hundred talks and workshops, 17 of which will be presented by societies and associations that work with Wiley. So be sure to add these sessions to your itinerary too:


    • Rosa Aronson - TESOL International Association


Pre-Conference Workshop: Aspiring CEO Deep Dive: To CEO or not to CEO


    • Howard Wallack - Society for Human Resource Management


Pre-Conference Workshop: Achieving Global Growth - Going Global: A Study of China Operations


    • Barry Pilson - TESOL International Association


The Role of the C-Suite in Technology Planning and Implementation


    • Tara Sheehan - Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management


40 Lessons For First Time Execs Under 40


    • Shawn Boynes - American Association of Anatomists


Stretch Your Conference Content


    • Christie Tarantino - Institute of Food Technologists


You’ve Got the Job: Make the First 30-60-90 Days a Success


    • Sheri Jacobs, author of The Art of Membership: How to Attract, Retain, and Cement Member Loyalty


Charting a New Association World of Engagement


    • Frank Krause - American Geophysical Union


Data to the People


    • Thomas Reiser - International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis


Business of Meetings: Your Burning Questions about International Meetings Answered!


    • John Segota - TESOL International Association


Undercover Boss: Secrets for Success and Advancement to the C-Suite


    • Christine McEntee - American Geophysical Union


Is a Business Excellence Office (BEO) Right For You?


    • Richard Yep - American Counseling Association


A Primer on For-Profit Membership & Marketing Strategies for Nonprofit Leaders


    • Tom Quash - Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses


Using Research for Better Decision-Making


    • Steven Weiss and James Gurowka - Institute of Management Accountants


Smart New Market Evaluation and Development


    • Shawn Boynes - American Association of Anatomists


Creating Meaningful CEO Performance Evaluations

Ain’t No Mountain High Enough to keep us away from ASAE15

If, you won’t be at ASAE in person this year, please join us on Twitter, following the #ASAE15 hashtag and conversation. Or if you will be going, Reach Out (I’ll be There), please tweet and share your highlights so that we can join in.

In the meantime, I’ll be listening to my Motown Records Spotify playlist.

    Eva Lantsoght
Eva Lantsoght
Assistant Professor, Universidad San Francisco de Quito

Depending on your institution's guidelines, you will either finish your PhD by having a number of papers accepted for publication, or by writing a "big book"-style thesis.

This post is entirely aimed at those of us who spend months on end delivering a thesis of several hundreds of pages. We might be overly proud of having our baby finally sent out into the world, but then it will dawn upon us: the majority of researchers would prefer to read a 10-page paper about a more specific part of this research than plow through our 400 pages of labor. The only one who would ever want to read through it all and spend an entire week making sense of your thesis is a fellow PhD student….

And thus, for most of us "big book"-thesis-writing-and-publishing folks, we'll need to revisit all our material again after publication of the thesis, and turn it into a number of journal papers.

If you are lucky enough to get into a post-doc position that is fully research-oriented, you have all the time (or at least, you might think you have) to write your papers. If you venture out into the industry, you'll have to do it in your evenings and weekends.

Regardless of the time constraints, it's still extremely valuable to take the step of turning your dissertation into journal papers. Two years past my thesis defense, I'm reaching the end of this process (with a number of papers published, a number in review and a few more to write). Below are some of my observations on the process.shutterstock_65032552_253789646_253789647_256224451 (1).jpg

1. Plan for it

After you graduate, life is going to take over. You might be changing jobs, moving to a different place/city/country, and these papers might start to slip to the back of your mind. Take some time while your dissertation is still freshly printed, and ask yourself the following questions:

- Which chapters or subchapters would serve as a good journal paper?

- Which journal should I submit my work to?

- How much time do I think I need for writing this paper?

Then, start planning paper by paper. I’m keeping an overview in a Google docs spreadsheet with the papers, the journals I want to submit to, and the tentative self-imposed deadlines. My goal is to produce six new drafts per year, but some months are entirely filled with dealing with reviewers’ comments, delivering research reports with new work, or teaching duties. I typically give my co-authors (maximum) a month to send their feedback. The feedback is usually limited, so I might need just a morning to make a few changes, and then submit. I plan to start writing the next paper (or replying to reviewers’ comments and reworking the manuscript) whenever the draft of the previous one is done, so that I create a constant stream of writing, revising, sending to co-authors and submitting.

2. Enlist some good co-authors

Now that you have -hopefully- worked well with your thesis committee members, and implemented their advice to deliver the final draft of your dissertation, is there any part of your research that particularly benefited from their input? If you are planning to write a paper on this topic, consider inviting this committee member to be a co-author.

Writing with authors other than your supervisor will improve your writing, and is typically well-received in most fields. Publishing with different authors shows that you can work across research groups and universities and that you are ready to reach out into the world.

3. Remember that not all papers are born equal

Some papers will roll out from your dissertation in just a few writing sessions. For other papers you'll be sweating and sighing as you try to force a piece of research into a stand-alone narrative. Don't get mad at yourself or your work - just accept this fact as it is. And if the frustration becomes too much, head to the gym, grab some chocolate or do whatever typically relieves your stress.

Have you published several papers from the work in your dissertation? How did you organize this, and what advice would you like to share with me?

Image Credit/Source:Tatiana Popova/Shutterstock

    Deni Auclair
Deni Auclair
VP & Lead Analyst, Outsell, Inc.

A not-for-profit’s bylaws guide its activities, outlining how it must be governed. They are not meant to provide a blow-by-blow policy and procedures manual, dictating how to execute on every turn an organization may take.

144322105_253816745_253816746_256224451 (1).jpgAllowing for agility and innovation within an organization means ceding strict governance control, at least in good part, to those managing operations. This standing down from a micromanagement role also applies to reviewing and changing draconian and outdated bylaws, often put in place at the founding of the organization in an earlier decade or even century. Modifying bylaws can go a long way to opening doors to new strategies. In late 2013, the American Academy of Dermatology hosted a State Society Leadership Summit, at which a State Society Development Task Force was formed. Several topics emerged as priorities, including, among other things, ineffective committees, outdated bylaws or structures, and the lack of support for organizational change.

Interference from a board can also hinder innovation, especially if financial reasons are cited as the rationale for limiting investment, even if a reserve exists. Today’s environment demands financial risk-taking, and while that mindset goes against the grain of societies with an anti-profit mindset, it remains an imperative when seeking growth and replenishment of funds. Carefully planned strategies can result in new offerings that stimulate growth, market awareness, and raise the profile of an organization. While startups and commercial publishers experiment in the marketplace, society boards must understand that in order to fulfill missions, commercial competitiveness remains an imperative, even while maintaining a mission-driven culture.

Some issues to consider when modifying bylaws include:


    1. Are the organization’s principal mission, core values, and objectives up to date? Including language about innovation in the objectives section, for example, can keep that goal at the forefront. For example, “To serve as a highly trustworthy, innovative, collaborative organization bringing together and involving…” is a good way to begin stating an objective.


    1. Do the bylaws measure effectiveness? Provisions for metrics may provide helpful and consistent guidelines for considering new actions.


    1. Do the bylaws define the qualifications or functions of board members? What mix of expertise, personality, or strength should they exhibit? This can help ensure that a board’s composition supports innovation and looking outward rather than focusing inward or on personal causes.


    1. Size of the board and frequency of meetings can be key to an organization’s success, and better set in bylaws than in board resolutions that tend to become buried in minutes and forgotten (or ignored). Boards with more than 10 members become difficult to convene and manage, and small boards (fewer than six) may discourage independent thinking and effective leadership.


    1. Do the bylaws contain a conflict of interest policy, and how direct or perceived conflicts must be addressed? Many organizations require its directors, officers, and key employees to sign conflict of interest letters each year, along with statements disclosing all actual and potential conflicts.


    1. Do the bylaws define what and how committees may be established, who can serve on them, accountability to the board, and do they establish powers and limits? Metrics around committees and their assigned tasks are critical in ensuring that ineffective committees do not have the ability to interfere with constructive actions a board or employees may wish to take.


These are only a few of the many considerations not-for-profits need to take into account when creating or modifying bylaws, ensuring that governance policies do not restrict innovation and progress. Societies today are struggling with attracting, serving, and building membership bases. Being stymied by restrictive governance provisions will only stifle innovation and creative thinking by the board, employees, and members.

The full Outsell report "Professional Associations and Learned Societies: Current Issues and Outlook" is available to Exchanges readers at a 30% discount. If you wish to purchase the report, visit the webpage on Outsell.com, add the report to your cart, and at the checkout enter the code 127601.

Image Credit/Source:photo168/iStockphoto

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