All 10 entries tagged Articles

View all 19 entries tagged Articles on Warwick Blogs | View entries tagged Articles at Technorati | There are no images tagged Articles on this blog

January 10, 2024

Most Downloaded Articles of 2023

Follow-up to Top of the Articles: Exchanges’ Most Downloaded Articles 2022 from Exchanges Reflections: Interdisciplinary Editor Insights

The annual review of the most downloaded articles brings some new surprises and old favourites to the fore.

Welcome to 2024, a year which I suspect will be both a busy one and evolutionary one for the journal. As it traditional now, I like to start the new year by looking back at those articles which have been the most heavily accessed in the past year on the Exchanges site [1]. I always run off a report drawing this information together each October/November for our departmental IAS annual report. Naturally though, that doesn’t take into account those readers who might spend their winter holidays reading the journal! [2]. Hence, what follows is the definitive most accessed chart for the past year on Exchanges.

The following are based on downloads of the final article PDFs, rather than accesses to the top-level landing (summary) page. Consequently, they represent how many times the actual article itself has been accessed by readers.

Position Article Year: Volume (Issue) 2022 Position Type
1 Fedotov, Critical Analysis of the Electric Vehicle Industry: Five forces and strategic action fields. 2022: 10(1) #8 Article
2 Braddy, Utilizing the Octothorpe (#): Schizoanalytic cartographies recognized in War Games. 2022: 9(2) New Entry Article
3 Lewis, The Simultaneity of Loneliness and Popularity in Dear Evan Hansen. 2022: 9(3) New Entry Article
4 de Leeuw, 'A kiss is the beginning of cannibalism': Julia Ducournau’s Raw and Bataillean Horror. 2020: 7(2) #3 Article
5 Benhamou et al., From the Advent of Multiculturalism to the Elision of Race: The Representation of Race Relations in Disney Animated Features (1995-2009) 2014: 2(1) #2 Criticial Reflection
6 Varwell, A Literature Review of Arnstein’s Ladder of Citizen Participation: Lessons for contemporary student engagement. 2022: 10(1) New Entry Review Article
7 Price et al., Multispecies, More-Than-Human, Nonhuman, Other-Than-Human: Reimagining idioms of animacy in an age of planetary unmaking. 2023: 10(2) New Entry Conversation
8 Schaper, Conquering the Meatspace: The lonely nerd in David Fincher’s The Social Network (2010) and Baran bo Odar’s Who Am I (2014). 2022: 9(3) New Entry Article
9 Opaluwah, Participatory Development: A Tool of Pedagogy. 2016: 4(1) New Entry Review Article
10 Khair Allah, Review: The Body in Twilight: Representation of the Human Body, Sexuality and Struggle in Contemporary Arab Art. 2023: 11(1) New Entry Book Review

Looking at the chart I can see how once again we have a very healthy range of new entries appearing. Many of these are from the past two years of Exchanges’ publications, with perhaps a smaller than normal smattering of old ‘classics’ in the list. That said, last year’s #8 has leapt up – considerably – to become our number one most accessed article of 2023. A round of applause for that article and its author! [3] It was also nice to see our newest submission format (book reviews) having a day in the sunshine with one of these articles popping up in our top 10 for 2023. I think that clearly demonstrates this kind of article is a welcome addition to Exchanges, from our readers' perspective.

You can check out the statistics for yourself this and every article if you are interested – we always make the last 12 months of information publicly available. It is, you will see, a long way clear of the second placed article – which indicates a very healthy and laudable level of readership.

In contrast to last year where there was a fine balance between peer-reviewed and editorially reviewed formats, this year the top 10 chart is very heavily dominated by peer-reviewed publications (7:3): which must be very rewarding for authors and reviewers alike given the long hours they will have worked on these pieces. That isn’t to say it isn’t challenging to get one of the editorially-reviewed pieces into print, but it is a much longer labour for the peer-reviewed texts!

Will any of these articles appear in 2024’s most downloaded articles chart? I bet a couple at least will, but we shall have to see what this year brings. With potentially 5 new issues of Exchanges scheduled for publication this year, all bets for now are well and truly off. We shall have to see who next year’s top dogs are in another 365 or so days. [4]

---

Endnotes

[1] I did give away a few hard copies of the journal, but not to any degree that would have impacted on these statistics.

[2] I am not entirely kidding – I know we had an article submission on Christmas eve for example, long after I’d ‘downed tools’ for the year.

[3] I should note the author did an excellent job of sharing their article on social media over a protracted period last year, which I suspect helped them no end. My advice to authors – never be shy of sharing your research publications via your socials!!!

[4] There are an estimated 60-70 articles anticipated to appear across these issues, so there will be a lot of competition.


January 13, 2023

Top of the Articles: Exchanges’ Most Downloaded Articles 2022

Writing about web page https://exchanges.warwick.ac.uk/

In a companion piece to yesterday's post, the EIC takes a look at which articles proved the most regularly consulted by the readership in 2022.

Yesterday I focussed on the most popular episodes of the Exchanges Discourse podcast. Today I’m turning to the journal itself and asking the question: What were the most popular articles in 2022? Naturally, there are a variety of metrics that we could use here but I’ll be deploying the one with the most readily available data to me: raw downloads. [1]

For interest, here’s the 2021 chart.

We published a grand total of 28 new articles in 2022, but as always this new chart isn’t limited to these pieces alone. Although, it might be natural to assume that there will be a strong representation from the new material given its prominence in social media post issue launch, previous years have shown a lot of articles on Exchanges go on being actively accessed year after year. Indeed glancing at the stats for 2022, even the least accessed article had 36 downloads which is no small feat! [2]

This year in keeping with the podcast chart, I’ve also given a reader share figure. This is to give an idea of the proportion of downloads each article enjoyed in comparison to every piece we’ve ever published since 2013.

Without any more delay then, here’s this year’s chart:

  Article Reader Share 2021 Position Issue Year Type
1 Tokens, Writing and (Ac)counting: A Conversation with Denise Schmandt-Besserat and Bill Maurer 7.6% New Entry 5(1) 2017 Con
2 From the Advent of Multiculturalism to the Elision of Race: The Representation of Race Relations in Disney Animated Features (1995-2009) 6.1% #1 2(1) 2014 CF
3 'A kiss is the beginning of cannibalism' 2.2% #3 7(2) 2020 Art
4 Gamestop 1.8% #2 8(3) 2021 CF
5 Challenges that Early Career Researchers Face in Academic Research and Publishing 1.5% New Entry 9(1) 2021 Art
6 The Social Stigma and the Challenges of Raising a Child with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) in Greece 1.5% New Entry 6(2) 2019 Art
7 Reflecting on the Experience of Environmental Epiphany in the Lives of Aldo Leopold, Thomas Hill Jr., and Albert Schweitzer 1.3% New Entry 9(2) 2022 CF
8 Critical Analysis of the Electric Vehicle Industry 1.3% New Entry 10(1) 2022 Art
9 Interrogating Practices of Gender, Religion and Nationalism in the Representation of Muslim Women in Bollywood: Contexts of Change, Sites of Continuity 1.1% #7 2(2) 2015 Art
10 Myths of Male Same-Sex Love in the Art of the Italian Renaissance 1.0% #6 3(1) 2015 Art

Key: Art – Article, Con – Conversation, CF – Critical Reflection

As always, I’m delighted, if a little surprised, how a number of our older articles continue to maintain a strong grip on our audience, especially given the strong reader share of the top two items. That said items from the last three years are still strongly represented with five entries – two of which were only published in 2022 - making very commendable appearances here.

It’s also good to see both conversation and critical reflection articles appearing high in the chart. [3] We continue to receive a number of excellent pieces in these formats, if perhaps fewer of the conversations than I would like, and hence it is satisfying to see our readers continue to value them, at least extrapolating from this data. [4] There are two a good range of new entries and checking back to when I first started reviewing the downloads in 2019’s volumes they are all genuine first-time appearances at the top of the charts – well done those authors especially.

As always, I suspect some of these articles will appear in our 2023 chart. However, with a currently scheduled 5 new issues to appear this year it wouldn’t surprise me if there was more than a little more competition than ever from new pieces twelve months from now!

---

Endnotes

[1] Bibliometric fans and scholars might want to adopt a different method, drawing on impact, half-life, citations or altmetrics, but with the limited time available to me I’m going down the easiest route.

[2] It was an editorial from 2016, should you be curious.

[3] The most popular editorial(one of mine) popped up at number 45 in the chart (out of 231 total entries). Surprisingly high, although it was in one of our largest issues in terms of articles. Personally, I’m happy anyone reads the editorials - as editor, one has to accept that your own prose is always going to be of lesser import than featured authors!

[4] I often mention how critical reflections especially are valued by our readership and it’s good to see the numbers back me up!


January 18, 2022

Looking Back at 2021: Most Downloaded Articles

Writing about web page https://exchanges.warwick.ac.uk/

We continue our look back to last year, and see what the 10 most downloaded articles were.

Continuing on from our last post, where we looked at podcast listening figures in 2021, this time we come to the heart of our operations. That’s right, it’s time for the Top 10 most downloaded articles on Exchanges in 2021. This chart is based on downloads of the articles themselves, rather than those individuals only visiting the landing page for each article – so is the closest figures we have to indicate the number of readers.

You can of course see 2020’s scores here.

For interest, I’ve also indicated where any of the following items appeared in 2020’s chart, or if they are making a new appearance this year. So, without any more delay – here are the values for 2021.

Rank

Article Title

Issue

Type

2020 Position

1

From the Advent of Multiculturalism to the Elision of Race: The Representation of Race Relations in Disney Animated Features (1995-2009)

2(1)
Oct-14

Critical Reflection

#2

2

Gamestop

8(3)
Apr-21

Critical Reflection

New Entry

3

'A kiss is the beginning of cannibalism'

7(2)
Jan-20

Article

#8

4

Current Trends in Natural Products Research from the CBNP10 Symposium at Warwick

4(1)
Oct-16

Critical Reflection

New Entry

5

Re-performing Design

8(1)
Oct-20

Article

New Entry

6

Myths of Male Same-Sex Love in the Art of the Italian Renaissance

3(1)
Sep-15

Article

#4

7

Interrogating Practices of Gender, Religion and Nationalism in the Representation of Muslim Women in Bollywood: Contexts of Change, Sites of Continuity

2(2)
Apr-15

Article

New Entry

8

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

8(2)
Apr-21

Article

New Entry

9

Participatory Development: A Tool of Pedagogy

4(1)
Oct-16

Review Article

#6

10

‘The Sagacity of Words’

8(3)
May-21

Article

New Entry

Two things spring out immediately looking at these results in contrast with last year. Firstly, we have no fewer than 6 articles which are new entries in the top ten. Perhaps more significantly through, four of these new entries were published in 2021, meaning that in even a few short months they’ve been able to climb the league table alongside perennial highly read items. I am also pleased to see at least two of these items were ones for which there are accompanying podcast episodes. Did the podcasts help improve their readership? Possibly, although I couldn’t say for certain – I’d like to think they did though!

Our congratulations to all the authors of these titles.

That’s it for this year’s look back, but by next year we hope to have introduced a new level of metrics for all our articles. It’s currently undergoing testing but with any luck, by January 2023 we’ll be able to share a different dimension of usage and discussion relating to all our articles. Keep your eye on this blog for details as and when we launch this service publicly!


June 17, 2021

It’s so funny, how we don’t talk anymore…

Writing about web page https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/cross_fac/ias/postdocs/accolade/calendar/summer/#story8

I was speaking today as part of the IAS’ Accolade programme in an AMA (ask me anything) segment about the journal and the podcast. There was an excellent question from the audience about the different formats we accept for publication, and I waxed lyrical for a while about interviews. Hence, I thought it was perhaps worth capturing some of the points of interest for future authors.

Interviews, or conversations as they’re termed in the journal, were very much Exchanges’ stock-in trade in the early years. If you look at those nascent years, you’ll see time and again interviews with significant figures and scholars cropping up in the pages. This was, in part, an artefact of the close association the journal enjoyed (and continues to) with the IAS’ fellows programme. Many of the participants would, as part of their research programme, arrange for a significant scholar to visit Warwick for a period, to engage with the local community and potentially spark an ongoing collaboration. During such visits, keen fellows would stage a recorded and transcribed interview with these visitors, which would then be submitted to Exchanges as a partial record of the engagement success.

In recent years, as the journal has consciously decoupled from Warwick somewhat as part of our move towards a greater internationalisation, these interview submissions have dropped away. It is not that they solely come from Warwick, but with our close organisational and operational links, I suspect we spurred more of our local scholars to produce them than the wider author community. I am racking my brain currently to think about the last time I actually had a conversation piece which we saw through to publication.[1]

Nevertheless, what I wrote in an earlier blog post about the value of these interviews/conversations stands. They are always highly read, often downloaded and very warmly received by the readership. They provide an accessible gateway into a subject area for scholars old and new alike, and do wonders for the authors in associating their names with that of their interview subject in print! They are also, relatively speaking, an easy format to create an article around and as such I remain surprised we don’t continue to get more of them. Compared to the weeks and months you’ll labour over a peer-reviewed article, a conversation piece [2] is a relatively easy ‘win’ to add to your publication record: while also making a valuable addition to the wider disciplinary discourse!

Which brings me to today and my discussions about formats for the journal. In the past we’ve generally had conversation articles which are comprises of a singular subject along with one or two interlocutors providing much-needed context, asking questions and steering the debate. It is a talking head format which works well, so well in fact that I’ll confess it forms the basis of The Exchanges Discourse’s configuration when we have guest speakers on the podcast. What we haven’t had though on the podcast or as interview papers in the journal are true discourses: that is, debates between a small coterie of speaking-heads in discussion. I’m know such discussions are frequent occurrences in formal and informal settings aplenty, not just at our home institution of Warwick, but within the various interdisciplinary-led early career researcher communities around the globe.

While part of me thinks such a format would be ideally suited to appear on our the podcast [3], I think such a discussion transcribed would also create an engaging, entertaining and informative article. If I’m being honest, I can almost see one now with three scholars: one drawn from within the STEM social science and arts and humanities disciplines apiece; debating what they envisage or perceive impactful and fruitful interdisciplinary research and practice to comprise.

Such a discussion represents a titular topic for the journal, but oddly not one with which we’ve ever had an interview specifically dealing. There are undoubtedly many other topics which might be debated in this collegiate manner as a conversation article for the journal. Certainly, I would strongly encourage anyone who is inspired by this idea to consider proposing or submitting it. Naturally, I stand ready, as always, to provide guidance and advice on the format, and to act as a sounding board for any potential authors considering such a submission.

Of course, we could take one step beyond this and actually have the discussions appear in both print AND as an episode of the podcast simultaneously. Now, this would not only enable readers and listeners alike to access the debate in whatever media format they preferred, but serve to link together these two key arms of the Exchanges operation. It seems, the more I think of it, as an idea whose time has come.

So, there’s my challenge to our readership and any budding authors out there: start thinking about a discussion topic or interview subject that could form a readable and valuable article for Exchanges next issue. They don’t take long and you’ve a few months ahead of our next scheduled October publication date to go through our editorial processes.

I look forward to hearing more about your thoughts, and even more so, reading any submissions.

---

[1] It wasn’t that long ago – Vol 7(3). But safe to say they have been submitted exceptionally rarely in the past two years.

[2] Or a critical reflection, if I’m being honest about the work involved.

[3] If you agree, and have or two like minded scholars, get in touch and let’s see if we can feature your discussions in an episode.


January 19, 2021

Top of the Exchanges Scholarly Pops 2020

Writing about web page https://exchanges.warwick.ac.uk/

Last year might already feel a long time ago, which given the events it witnessed, might not be a bad thing. However, we’re not quite done looking back over what 2020 had for us here at Exchanges. Hence, once again, we’re delighted to bring you the top 10 articles based on the number of times they were downloaded by readers over the past calendar year. It’s notable looking at the table below, that while articles with a greater deal of maturity show up as retaining their popularity, many of the top articles last year were taken from three volumes of Exchanges we published in 2020. It’s especially wonderful to see that our number one article comes from our celebrated special issue from last January!

Rank

Article

Issue

2019

1

‘Funeral Baked Meats’

v7(2)

NE

2

From the Advent of Multiculturalism to the Elision of Race: The Representation of Race Relations in Disney Animated Features (1995-2009)

v2(1)

#3

3

Academic Fraud

v7(3)

NE

4

Myths of Male Same-Sex Love in the Art of the Italian Renaissance

v3(1)

#2

5

Tokens, Writing and (Ac)counting: A Conversation with Denise Schmandt-Besserat and Bill Maurer

v5(1)

#1

6

Participatory Development: A Tool of Pedagogy

v4(1)

#6

7

Consuming and Being Consumed

v7(2)

NE

8

'A kiss is the beginning of cannibalism'

v7(2)

NE

9

Forêt de Guerre: Natural remembrances of the Great War

v1(1)

NE

10

Global Environmental Liability: Multinational Corporations under Scrutiny

v1(2)

#4

Our thanks to all our authors, not only those who appear in this chart, and here’s hoping our various issues this year contain some pieces which similarly climb to the heights in the 2021 charts. For contrast, you might like to see what were the top articles in 2019 in my post from a year ago too.


May 21, 2020

Podcast: Episode 2

Writing about web page https://anchor.fm/exchangesias

Once again we're delighted to bring you another episode from our podcast. This time taking a look at the sorts of materials the journal considers for publication. Here's the episode details:

In this second episode, we look at the kinds of articles that the Exchanges interdisciplinary journal considers for publication, along with some guidance about what to think when writing them. The episode also lightly explores the difference between our peer reviewed and non-reviewed works.

Listen at: https://anchor.fm/exchangesias/episodes/For-Our-Consideration-eec8n6


February 04, 2020

Special Issue on Cannibalism Published

Writing about web page https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2

I’m delighted to announce that we have published our first special issue, after a year of preparatory work behind the scenes. I couldn’t be happier with the way the issue has turned out, not least of which the fact that this is the BIGGEST ever issue we’ve published. By my calculations this issue contains 63% more peer-reviewed articles than its nearest comparator (v5.1 fact fans), and fully 38% more total pages than our previous longest issue (way back to v2.1). It’s also, incidentally, the fifth issue to come our under my stewardship, one more than any previous lead editor’s stewardship, so I’ll be basking in that minor glory for a few days at least.

If you haven’t yet had the opportunity to read the special issue, I’d strongly encourage you to do so. This is a really fascinating issue, on a topic I confess I’ve given very little thought to personally, before working on the collection. Nevertheless, there are some corking pieces in there and as you’ll see in the editorial, I’ve a few favourites among them. That’s not to denigrate the other pieces, which have all passed successfully through our rigorous quality filter and are filled with fascinating insight, but rather purely personal taste.

Maybe I shouldn’t mention taste in an issue on cannibalistic issues?

Nevertheless, the next week or so will see the usual post-publication activities of promoting the issue and each article as widely as possible. For ease of viewing, here’s a table of contents (TOC) for the issue.

Shorland, A., 'Bites here and there': Literal and Metaphorical Cannibalism Across Disciplines Conference Review. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.550

Ramos-Velasquez, V.M., Anthropophagic Re-Manifesto for the Digital Age: 10th Anniversary Rendition. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.465

Frost, D., ‘Provisions being scarce and pale death drawing nigh, / They'd try to cast lots to see who should die’: The Justification of Shipwreck Cannibalism in Popular Balladry https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.459

D’Antonio, C.S., Consuming and Being Consumed: Cannibalism in the Consumerist Society of Margaret Atwood’s ‘The Edible Woman’ https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.446

Henderson, L., Anthropophagy of the Werewolf. An Eco-Feminist Analysis of Justine Larbalestier's Liar (2009). https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.402

Moran, T.F., The Camera Devoured: Cinematic Cannibalism in Pedro Costa’s Casa De Lava (1994). https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.461

Shames, D., Consumption from the Avant-Garde to the Silver Screen: Cannibalism, Fetish, and Profanation. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.466

Wheatley, M., For Fame and Fashion: The Cannibalism of Creatives in Chuck Palahniuk’s Haunted (2005) and Nicolas Winding Refn’s The Neon Demon (2016). https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.458

Jackson, K., Dejects and Cannibals: Postmodern Abjection in Ana Lily Amirpour's The Bad Batch. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.476

Alsop, J.S., ‘Funeral Baked Meats’: Cannibalism and Corpse Medicine in Hamlet. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.460.

Leta, M., Cannibal Basques: Magic, Cannibalism and Ethnography in the Works of Pierre de Lancre. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.408

Green, W.D., 'Such Violent Hands'. The Theme of Cannibalism and the Implications of Authorship in the 1623 Text of Titus Andronicus. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.462

Davis, H., ‘Monkey Meat’ and Metaphor in Shohei Ooka’s Fires on the Plain. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.457

De Leeuw, U., 'A kiss is the beginning of cannibalism': Julia Ducournau’s Raw and Bataillean Horror. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.463

Das, R., Haun-Maun-Khaun: A Postcolonial Reading of the Cannibals in Some Fairy Tales from Colonial Bengal. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.454

Johnson, G.J., 'But He Looked Suspiciously Well Fed': Editorial, Volume 7, Part 2. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v7i2.561

Phew. That really is quite the collection of work. And now if you’ll excuse me, I must return to catch up with the outstanding submissions for this issue, and the submissions for the next few issues of Exchanges. Safe to say, 2020 is off to a cracking start for the journal, and long may it continue.


January 15, 2019

New Year, New Content

I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas/winter [1] break. This is my fifth day back in the Exchanges saddle, although only my second one in the office due to conference attendance [2] and a spot of working from home. Always nice to be back at the IAS here in (currently not very) sunny Coventry though, as I find it’s a powerful and inspirational location at which to work.

My first day back on site last week was one filled with meetings, not least of which was our semi-regular departmental team meeting [3]. So packed with meetings in fact, that I actually forgot to take a lunch break – whoops! Two meetings that day standout in particular. The first was a long and perhaps rather rhizomal conversation with one of my editorial board (hello Marcos). It’s always a real pleasure to spend some time with my editors in person, and their generosity in talking about their own research, teaching, careers and lives represents a particular honour. Part of what Marcos and I were talking about though, were some ideas we’d sketched out before Christmas around some invited bilingual submissions for a future issue of Exchanges. I can say, it is (fairly) early days with regards to this, but I think it looks like there’s some genuine interest in this from our contacts, so it’s quite exciting.

Later in the day I also had the chance to chat at length with a visiting lecturer in critical safety systems (and oddly expert in Viking culture, literature and life), from the University of York. She’s an old friend of mine, and she’d taken the time between lectures to pop in for tea and a chat. Once again the topic of contributions to the journal came up, and quickly it emerged there was a sense her own students (home and abroad) could benefit from a guest appearance from yours truly to talk about the wonders of publishing with Exchanges. And maybe even contributing to the journal, as I’m sure they’d have some wonderful contributions to make. Fingers crossed something comes of this, as there’s nothing I like more than talking with post-graduate and early career researchers about publishing opportunities.

That was enough for one day, but I’ve been delighted since then again, as on Monday this week I received a further approach from some literature scholars wanting to explore publishing a special issue through Exchanges. I’m very much looking forward to some longer conversations about this next week, but if this and the bilingual issue come off, there’s a very exciting 2020 in terms of new content, original thought and valuable additions to the research discourse ahead of us.

All in all, I’m sure you’ll agree a great start to the new year. Don’t forget I’m always happy to talk to potential authors (or groups of authors) about future submissions, special issues or where academic publishing is going these days. Just drop me a line. In the meantime, I’m going back now to continue writing some new marketing material for Exchanges, and planning my communications for scholars workshop for next month.

[1] Or summer, if you’re part of my southern hemisphere readership/editorial team!

[2] Understanding the Social in a Digital Age, UEA, Norwich. Delightfully for once I wasn't speaking!

[3] Probably less of interest to readers, but all the same a very handy way to keep up with what’s going on here in the IAS


December 12, 2018

Article Focus On: Critical reflections – what’s their value?


In my last post I talked about interviews, or the Conversations with, series of articles that we publish in Exchanges. In today’s post, I’m going to talk about the other kind of article which stands alongside the more research intensive pieces in the journal: critical reflections. According to our author guide a critical reflection article comprises:

Focussed, critical appraisals typically covering an area of emerging research, a key event or a crucial new text. (1,000-3,000 words).

That’s not a long explanation for what are actually highly readable and insightful articles, so let me expand a little here. When people approach us with a critical appraisal article, most commonly they want to write about an event they have recently attended. This is a great start, as we are all interested in reading about conferences, workshops, seminars and symposia others have attended which (for whatever reasons) we didn’t have the chance to. However, so far, so much a blog post. Where the critical reflection article differs is that they are not intended to be a simple narrative of what was said and/or who spoke. Yes, this sort of contextual information is still an important part of the content, but where the critical reflection article takes a step forward towards being a more academic piece of writing is right there in the title.

Context - What are they?

In short, these pieces are supposed to entail a critical reflection about an event that is to say for example, what was it about the context, content and theme, which was of value or importance? Did the author agree with everything which was said or, from their own scholarly perspective, were there aspects that they wanted to take issue with or even wholesale challenge? Ideally too, there needs to be an element of how the event changed the author’s perspectives, thinking or knowledge. Essentially, how did it have an impact upon or affected them. Incorporating these evaluative and self-reflective elements is what changes an ‘event report’ from a tasty but ultimately unsatisfying intellectual snack, into a gourmet and rewarding scholarly treat. In short, this is what makes the paper a critical reflection.

Now, in the prior paragraph I’ve been writing about critical reflections of events. However, you will have noticed Exchanges is not only interested in critical reflections on events, but on essentially any reflections on aspect of scholarship. Typically, what should stimulate the writing of a critical reflection is an intellectual intervention or encounter of any kind. I’ll acknowledge events are the most common or perhaps most prominent such circumstances. Yet, other artefacts or circumstances can move us as much, if not more sometimes. For example, you might have spoken with a particular author, or read a lot of their work lately, which has stimulated your thinking in new directions. Alternatively, you might have read a particularly challenging paper, report or monograph which has caused you to reconsider your own research practice. Writing a critical reflection concerning these ‘events’ can be therefore as valuable and timely a piece of written scholarship as writing about a literal event. Personally, with our engaged, broad and interdisciplinary readership in mind, I’d like to see far more critical reflections about non-conference type events appearing in our pages.

The last kind of critical reflection is perhaps less easy to predefine, at least structurally, and that’s the opinion piece. For example, as a scholar there might not be a singular specific event or work you’re looking to critique. What you want to offer instead is your own, unique insight into an aspect of your discipline. In this respect, here is where Exchanges can be a most valuable publication destination especially for those scholars in the STEM subjects, where opinion pieces are less commonly accepted in major journals. Certainly, many major journals may perceive early career researchers have more ‘limited’ disciplinary experience and insight to offer, and may decline to publish such submissions as a matter of course. Here at Exchanges, we’d respectfully disagree with this stance, as per our mission, we strongly believe that new, original and insightful thought which critically reflects on a field can emerge from scholars at any stage in their career. Hence, as Editor-in-Chief I’d strongly encourage anyone who’d like to ‘make a scholarly statement’ about their field, to consider writing it as a critical reflection for us.

Criticial Reflection Advantages

One advantage of the critical reflection piece by the way, is that they are mercifully brief pieces of work, which means they can be written, edited and ready for publication quite rapidly. They can be almost as brief as this blog post in length, in fact! Naturally, the manuscript should include the context and set the scene, as with all our articles, remember you are writing for a readership which doesn’t automatically have a deep familiarity with your field. Nevertheless, this should not diminish the depth or breadth of scholarship which can be included. Have a look at these recent examples, for an idea of the sort of things you might write about.

Eden, A.A., 2018. Enchanted Community: Reflections on Art, the Humanities and Public Engagement. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v6i1.252

Mulcahy, S., 2018. Dissents and Dispositions. Reflections on the Conference of the Law, Literature and Humanities Association of Australasia. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v5i2.247

Crealock-Ashurst, B., et al., 2018. A Critical Reflection on the 28th International Biology Olympiad. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v5i1.221

Messin, L.J., & Meadows, J.C., 2018. Science for All. https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v4i1.153

Incidentally, a critical reflection can also act as a promotional piece. Not only for the author, but for institutions, research groups and projects, looking to raise their profiles. I really do believe these are exactly the sort of article which can really help to get a scholar noted. Hence, critically appraising some work you are intimately involved in, not only helps to develop your own career, but can serve as a valuable adjunct to other ongoing efforts.

In Conclusion

So, there you go. The critical appraisal, a valuable and relatively easy article type you can publish with Exchanges. And if you’re reading this and thinking you’ve got a great idea for one, either speak to myself or any of the Editorial Board about it. Or better yet, get writing and submitting – there’s every possibility critical reflections submitted in the first few months of 2019 can see publication in our spring issue of Exchanges! (possibly!)

Finally, on a personal note, I’m signing off as the Managing Editor-in-Chief for the Christmas break today. So can I wish all our readers, reviewers and authors (old and new) a most festive, relaxing and perhaps critically reflective break!


December 03, 2018

Article Focus On: Interviews – why do they matter?

One of my favourite kinds of articles frequently submitted to Exchanges are interviews, also known as ‘Conversations with…’, with key disciplinary figures. Since the first issue where Walsh interviewed Oliver Sacks [1] through to Kremers and Eggert’s efforts in the most recently published volume [2, 3], these have been perennially popular articles for authors and readers alike. Personally, I love the idea that through being an author of one of these pieces provides the author with a great excuse to talk directly with the great and the good within their field. You see, it can be challenging when you’re trying to network at conferences and other academic events, to think of a good topic to break the ice with an ‘academic celebrity’. I’ll admit it, I’ve been tongue tied myself when meeting notable names in my own field, and gushing ‘Oh I just love your books!’, isn’t quite the professional demeanour you might want to project. Nevertheless, asking someone if you can interview them for a publication is a great starter to at least a good chat, and who knows what else.

In terms of what we expect from an interview, the outline on our author guidance page is quite brief:

A dialogue with significant research figures in any field, with a particular focus on their interdisciplinary contributions (3,000-5,000 words).

Although, it does go on to note that authors considering writing one of these ‘are strongly encouraged to discuss the proposed content with the Senior Editor or a member of the Editorial Board, prior to submission. This will allow us to scope if the proposed piece will be suitable for Exchange’s diverse readership.’ [4]. As a result, I’ve realised it’s probably worth talking briefly about the type of content we’re looking for, to help guide future authors.

Content

In terms of the content, what the best of these articles do is initially to provide some context about the interviewee themselves. While we have had some considerable public intellectuals interviewed in past issues, there’s no guarantee a figure who is a giant in your field will always have instant recognition among our diverse readership. Hence, providing a potted biography at the start of an interview article really helps set the scene for readers and draws them in to why this person is important and worth their time reading about. For me, the best revcent example of how to approach this section of the article was provided by Roca-Lizarazu and Vince [5] who not only take the time to introduce their interviewee, Stef Craps, but also a rather neat introduction the field within which he has been so crucial. Aspiring Exchanges authors could do a lot worse than by following their approach.

Questions & Answers

One thing we don’t demand of our interview articles, is that interviewers make use of a pre-defined set of questions. We want the authors themselves to put their own particular spin on things and have an effective presence within the article. Certainly, as an experienced research interviewer myself, I know some of the best and most revelatory conversations can be rather freewheeling ones, rather than ones slavishly sticking to the script. That said, given our interdisciplinary nature as a journal, I would hope to see every interview develop conversations around each interviewees’ career, their influences and especially how/where they see the relevance of their work to the wider domain. We often also see interviewees holding forth on the ‘state of the art’ within their discipline, and sometimes looking towards the future. Alongside this, there is often some useful discussions around the authors and works they’ve been influenced by themselves. Given their expertise, what has piqued their interest, is generally something aspiring or new scholars within a field are likely to be very interested in reading about.

Benefits

As a result, this means interviews serve rather neatly as mini-review articles, exploring the field as guided by a noted expert. I believe this provides a reason why these types of articles are some of our most downloaded ones. That is because for scholars new to a field, they provide a wonderful guided entrance point through which to explore and expand their own knowledge. The other reasons I think they are popular are firstly partly due to the name recognition of the interviewees, big names are always a draw for scholarly journals as authors or subjects of discussion. Hence, as an editor, ever mindful of increasing our readership and visibility across the academy, I find them very useful.

That said, the other key reason is generally the sheer readability and accessibility these conversation articles offer. Even as an interdisciplinary journal, we cannot claim that every paper will be accessible to all readers, there is just no escaping from the specialised lexicon of most fields at times. Nevertheless, within interviews scholars are generally speaking in more naturalistic tones than you would find, say, in one of their articles or books. Similar to a lecture, this permits readers from outside their immediate field to more readily access their expert thought, insight and knowledge. Hence, I strongly believe this demonstrates why interviews are very much at the heart of Exchanges’ mission to propagate and support interdisciplinary research discourse.

Setting Up Interviews

Now, how do you go about setting up an interview for the purposes of publishing with Exchanges? Well, you’ll have to wait until my a future post for a discussion of that.

[1] Walsh, J., 2013. Oliver Sacks. Exchanges: The Warwick Research Journal, 1(1). Available at: https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v1i1.69

[2] Kremers, R., 2018. Conversation with…Wendy Larner. Exchanges: The Interdisciplinary Journal, 6(1). Available at: https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v6i1.243

[3] Eggert, J.P., 2018. Researching Terrorism and Political Violence: An Interview with Louise Richardson. Exchanges: The Interdisciplinary Journal, 6(1). Available at: https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v6i1.266

[4] Exchanges, 2018. Author Guidelines. Exchanges: The Interdisciplinary Journal. Available at: https://exchanges.warwick.ac.uk/guidance

[5] Roca-Lizarazu & Vince, R., 2018. Memory Studies Goes Planetary: An Interview with Stef Craps. Exchanges: The Interdisciplinary Journal, 5(2). Available at: https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v5i2.245


June 2024

Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
May |  Today  |
               1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30

Search this blog

Tags

Galleries

Most recent comments

  • Follow up: Well, that could have been a lot worse – only 11.7% of accounts are 'deceased' or in need… by Gareth Johnson on this entry

Blog archive

Loading…
RSS2.0 Atom
Not signed in
Sign in

Powered by BlogBuilder
© MMXXIV