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January 16, 2024

New Episode: Biochar, Artificial Pollination & Multispecies Justice

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

A new year sees a new season of the Exchanges Discourse podcast launch

It hasn’t even been a month since our last episode went live, and here we are back again with more academic chat. This time our first episode of 2024 sees a return of an old friend of the journal and podcast, as geography academic Catherine Price (University of Nottingham, UK) talks about her contributions to Exchanges. Regular readers of this blog and Exchanges will recall Catherine’s not only been on the podcast before, but was our key collaborator on the Anthropocene and More-Than-Human Special issue which we published last March. She’s such a busy scholar that it’s taken us until January to find time when we could both sit down for this chat!

Listen in here:

In the episode the start by talking about Catherine’s conversation article with Sophie Chao entitled Multispecies, More-Than-Human, Nonhuman, Other-Than-Human: Reimagining idioms of animacy in an age of planetary unmaking. Incidentally, this paper was one of our most downloaded ones of 2023, and has even recently been republished in the Spanish language. If you’ve not read it yet, why not listen to Catherine’s over view of the debates it covers.

Moving on from this we then turn to Catherine’s other paper in that issue which was concerned with the question Do we need Artificial Pollination if we have Multispecies Justice in the Anthropocene? You’ll notice I manage to slide in a Black Mirror reference here – and if you know the series, you’ll know exactly which episode I’m talking about! We also take a moment to reflect back on the reception for Anthropocene and More-Than-Human-World special issue of Exchanges from last March, which was very warmly received by readers. Naturally we also talk about Catherine’s future work and, as always, close with some pointers and advice for would-be academic authors.

For more on publishing with Exchanges, see our ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠online guide for authors⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠. Or to read Catherine’s articles, visit: https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v10i2

To help you navigate the episode – here’s the index card for when we get to each part of the discussion:

  • Timecode
  • 0:00 Opening
  • 0:47 Introductions
  • 5:19 Multispecies Paper
  • 11:30 Artificial Pollinators Paper
  • 15:15 Special Issue Reception
  • 17:40 Future Research
  • 18:55 Advice for Authors
  • 24:28 Closing & Outro

December 14, 2023

New Episode: Conceptual Association, Advertising & Hydropathy

Writing about web page https://spotifyanchor-web.app.link/e/mBJlx1mJwFb

The third podcast from Exchanges 10th birthday issue gets into the water cure and historical advertising

Today I’m bringing you the third in our series of 10th birthday issue celebration conversations over on the Exchanges Discourse podcast. This episode sees me in conversation with linguist, cultural historian and conceptual association scholar Constance de Silva (School of Languages, Literatures, Cultures and Linguistics, Monash University, Australia) about her recent paper and ongoing research. We had a few technical challenges so the recording is considerably shorter than Constance and my actual full conversation – although you still get well over 20 minutes of considered content! [1]

Listen in here: https://spotifyanchor-web.app.link/e/mBJlx1mJwFb

In the episode we begin by discussing Constance’s beautifully illustrated article The Rise of Conceptual Association and Linguistic Register as Advertiser Persuasive Instruments: An Australian study of press artefacts 1800s–1950s, which was in Vol 11.1 of Exchanges. There’s a lot to say and we touching along the way on elements [2] from the rise of the water cure (hydropathy) to emerging new concepts and meanings within advertising and every day language. Constance also graciously provides some related insights from her work into the changing roles and perceptions of women in medicine too. As always, the conversation moves along to discuss her ongoing publishing activities and plans for future papers, before we close with a range of advice for fellow authors on getting published.

To help you skip around the episode – here’s guide to our discussions:

Timecode

  • 0:00 Opening
  • 0:51 Introductions & Context
  • 3.34 Exploring the Article
  • 13:06 New Words, New Meanings
  • 15:44 Hydropathy, Women & Future Papers
  • 18:52 Publishing Advice
  • 22:30 Closing & Outro

This isn’t the last podcast for the year – surprisingly – as I recorded one earlier this week, which I hope to bring you before the Exchanges HQ closes for Christmas next week. I think you’ll find it an exhilarating listen, so stay tuned.

And of course, catch up with every episode of The Exchanges Discourse podcast, via our series index here:

https://exchanges.warwick.ac.uk/index.php/exchanges/podcast

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Endnotes

[1] For those keeping score, we actually chatted for about 90 minutes, and got into some really interesting areas of thought and research after we stopped the recording.

[2] No pun intended!


November 29, 2023

Author and Style Guidelines Updated

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

Updated guidelines means easier submission experience for authors

A task I’ve been meaning to get around for some months [1] has been to go through our Author and Style guidance pages and refresh the content. Finding the right moment has been trickier than I thought, but in the wake of our recent 10th birthday issue, it seemed the ideal time to revisit this vital guidance to our authors, and make some judicious changes. Going through I could spot areas where the advice has been lightly tweaked over the years, and as a result some elements of it were mildly contradictory. Indeed, I strongly suspect it hasn’t come in for anything like a systematic review since I first came aboard the journal, and I don’t believe I’ve really had a look at the style guide quite as closely as I have in recent weeks.

The good news is that the changes are all now live, and both guides are – hopefully – a lot clearer.

Now, if you’re an author whose article is already underway – don’t panic! We’ve not made any major changes! We’re the same journal with fairly broad and welcoming requirements which make it as easy as possible for authors to contribute. This exercise was rather about bringing this online guidance more closely into line with what we advise authors in our 1-2-1 consultations.

Naturally though, we can’t claim to be perfect – so if there’s any aspect you’d like to see more about on these pages, let us know. We’re only too happy to keep refining and improving this guidance to ensure it continues to be fit for purposes for the next decade of Exchanges.

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Endnotes

[1] Maybe even years.


June 07, 2023

New Episode – Environmental Humanities & Transdisciplinary Research

Writing about web page https://doi.org/10.31273/eirj.v10i2.979

Following on from last time, here’s another episode of the Exchanges Discourse in discussion with a past author. This episode I talk with past journal author, Julian Westgate, about the paper he authored entitled Corals, Geo-Sociality, and Anthropocene Dwelling, which appeared in our Anthropocene special issue back in March.

During our chat we discuss the challenges of publishing as a ‘transdisciplinary scholar’ and also Justin’s reflections on conducting fieldwork around the Great Barrier Reef. There’s also an interesting segue looking at his work in the ‘exo’ field, touching on ecologies and life-potential on other worlds too. As always we touch on experiences of publication and publishing, especially with an eye for advice for first time authors and early career scholars.

Listen in here via the following links:

Episode Index

  • 0:00 Opening
  • 0:42 Introduction
  • 4:28 Paper overview
  • 13:34 Other research & work
  • 17:28 Positive publishing experiences
  • 21:21 Publication challenges
  • 24:10 Advice for authors
  • 30:45 Closing

March 07, 2023

A Positive Experience with a Highly Regarded Journal: Author Feedback Review

It’s important to listen to contributors, and in this piece, the EIC reviews the formal author feedback from the past three years.

  • [I approached the journal because] A colleague spoke highly of the process and the journal's reputation. (author #1, feedback)

For many years now, we’ve asked every author who’s published in Exchanges to tell us about how they found the experience. Not all of them take up the offer, but many do, and I’m deeply grateful to each one for the thoughts they have shared. In fact, over the past three years[1] fully 53% of all authors have taken the time to reflect on publishing with us via our online survey form. As a result, it has been possible to create a snapshot of the journal’s perceptions within its core contributing community, along with a evaluative account of their experiences within the editorial journey. I recently collated and analysed the feedback for 2020-2022, and I have to say the result was wonderful! I certainly was not expecting the comments to be quite as positive as they were.

  • I was rejected by three discipline-specific journals, but realise actually that the interdisciplinary nature of my article made Exchanges perfect, and I was reassured by the positive, constructive and professional response to my informal query and the emphasis on ECRs (author #2, feedback)

What these results principally demonstrate is how Exchanges, its EIC and editorial team, along with its present operational ethos are all strongly valued by our contributing authors. Interestingly, the journal’s operational transparency, interdisciplinary remit and editorial regime were all stressed as particular highlights by authors. This is fantastic, as I would personally point to all three of these as specific strengths or perhaps unique selling points Exchanges offers to its current and potential authorial community. Even more gratifying, in response to questions about how we could improve, almost 70% of all those responding either said ‘nothing’ or took the opportunity to offer further praise for the journal and team. While I am proud of the journal and all my editorial colleagues, I was really not expecting to come in for such (all-but) universal praise in this part of the survey. Tea and medals all-around, I think!

  • I have no inhibitions in saying that out of the 6 peer-reviewed publications, and the 9 rejections (including an initial editorial rejection) I have had, Exchanges has been the most author-friendly experience by quite a margin. (author #3, feedback)

Seriously though, there were a few minor areas of unsatisfied technical or procedural development identified. I am not surprised, as the chief editor I am more than aware of many aspects of the journal, our hosting platform or even our operational protocols which could benefit from a re-examination. Certainly, for example, some authors felt the duration of review or time taken to obtain feedback could have been better. I would agree, my desire is always for speedy, but quality assured, reviewing. However, I must counter how from an editorial and reviewer standpoint, onboarding reviewers who are knowledgeable and willing to contribute their insights is never an easy task for my editors. Indeed, I’ve heard from other, larger and (dare I say it) more major journal editors how they face exactly the same problem.[2] So, while I appreciate this point, I fear it is more of a universal issue with reviewing than simply our title’s approach.

  • The journal seemed very welcoming to early-career researchers and researchers who were looking to publish their first article. The interdisciplinary nature also aligned with my research and the article’s content. (author #4, feedback)

Beyond their concerns, we also asked what journal authors would like to see developed by Exchanges in terms of services, options or features. More themed special issues or calls for papers were the aspects with most uniform degree of high interest, which is gratifying. I really relish working with colleagues on special issues – as editorial leads and associate editors alike, it really helps us deliver on our title’s missions. Altmetrics and the ability for readers to comment on articles followed in importance, which considering we introduced the former last year is gratifying. I remain conflicted as to the latter – personally I delight in the discourse on and around publications, but I am concerned how much monitoring or even active policing this might be on the platform.[3] Certainly, it is an interesting option but I’m not seeing a groundswell of demand for it yet. Conversely, where there was more limited interest was in terms of hard copies of the journal – which is a relief, as arranging print production is not that straightforward an endeavour. Very limited interest in multimedia abstracts appeared too, so I won’t be focussing on these any time soon either.

  • I've had a positive experience and fair and strict treatment here before, so I enjoy submitting here now. (author #5, feedback)

So, going on what does the outcome of this feedback review mean for the journal? Well, in part it will drive an update and refresh of the survey instrument to reflect the last three years of development for the title. It also underscores the importance for increasing the visibility and breadth within our potential contributing community. I strongly suspect there are many, many authors who would greatly value discovering Exchanges, but how and where we reach them has always been a challenge. I’m happy to report I’m talking actively with the IAS itself and fellow journal editors at Warwick about just how we raise our collective heads further above the parapet. The message here is clear: publishing with Exchanges is an excellent authorial experience…but you just need to know we exist first!

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My thanks to all the editors, associate editors, reviewers and authors[4] who have worked so hard to make the journal the successful experience it has been, and I would hope continues to be.

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Endnotes

  • [1] That would be for all issues published 2020-2022, or 7 journals in total.
  • [2] I suspect the recent UCU industrial action will not have helped matters – and that’s before you factor in the challenging work regime faced by so many of our colleagues.
  • [3] Let alone running through any legal liability this might open the journal to.
  • [4] Especially those who took the time to complete the feedback!

February 22, 2023

New Episode: Creating Informal & Informative Academic Discussion Articles

Writing about web page https://anchor.fm/exchangesias/episodes/Considering-Conversations-Creating-Informal--Informative-Academic-Discussion-Articles-e1vbokb

Last month we released a podcast episode looking at one of our two non-peer reviewed submission formats: the critical reflection article. Following feedback, it seemed a companion episode looking at the other of the formats was a good idea. Hence, today we launch a lengthy episode of the Exchanges Discourse dedicated to the conversation article. Listen in here:

(Also available on Spotify)

As it is once again a lengthy discussion, there is an episode index to give you an idea of where you might want to dip in – rather than listen the whole thing.

  • Opening: 00:00
  • Context: 01:07
  • Defining Conversation Articles: 03:33
  • Why Conversations Matter: 10:30
  • Writing Conversation Articles: 15:00
  • Conclusion: 23:45
  • Wrap Up: 24:48

The next episode of the Discourse is scheduled to be our panel discussion on interdisciplinary publishing – be sure to listen to that, as I suspect it might be our most exciting episode yet!


January 18, 2023

New Episode: The What, The Why, The How and The Where of Critical Reflections

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

A new year brings with it a new episode of the Exchanges Discourse podcast, focussing on critical reflections.

Many moons ago I wrote a piece for the blog about critical reflections, in part to address the lack of substantive information which had been previously provided about them. Since then it’s remained a popular format, but one which I’ve found many authors are less than clear about. So, before the Christmas break, I recorded a lengthy new episode of The Exchanges Discourse podcast to explore this topic.

Listen here: Creating Critical Reflection Articles: The What, The Why, The How and The Where (23:57)

(Also available on Spotify)

As it’s a lengthy episode I’ve provided some navigation guidance for listeners so they can skip to the right point of the podcast episode.

  • Opening (00:00)
  • Introduction (01:08)
  • Defining critical reflections (04:12)
  • Why they matter (09:28)
  • Writing critical reflections (14:08)
  • Wrap up (21:12)

Keen eared and regular listeners will notice I’ve also updated the musical ident that we use for the podcast. I thought after three seasons it was time to have a refresh of this, and I hope you enjoy the light and slightly innocuous new piece I’ve selected.

As we don’t have any more author interviews scheduled (at least not until after we publish issue 10.2 in April), I’ll be hopefully pulling together a couple more episodes in the meantime…but no spoilers for now.

Happy listening.


November 16, 2022

New Episode: In Conversation with Harriet Richmond

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

Another author graces the Exchanges' podcast with their thoughts on research and publication.

Once more we present another new episode of The Exchanges Discourse podcast, this time featuring another chat with an author from a recent volume of the journal. In a lengthy, and lively, discussion Harriet and myself explore a range of topics from HE marketisation – always a favourite of mine – through being an outsider and locating oneself within a discipline and into the realm of cultural studies and organisational stories. I find myself saying this about all the author interviews, but its true, that once again it was a very enjoyable and informative conversation.

(Also available on Spotify)

I’ll be recording the next episode tomorrow, once more featuring an author of a recent paper – and I’m looking forward to a similarly illuminatory chat too. Listen out for it!


September 27, 2022

In Conversation with Alena Cicholewski

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

And we're pleased to announce the release of our next podcast episode, chatting with another of our past authors about their work, publications and advice on publishing. Access the episode here

Listen to the episode here:

For all past episodes of the podcast, you can find a complete listing on this page.

I'll be recording more author interviews over the next few weeks, so keep an ear open for those too.


August 31, 2022

In Conversation with Natalia Rumak

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

After a quiet couple of months over the summer, wherein I’ve been focussing on publishing the journal [1], I am pleased to announce the first in a series of the Exchanges Discourse podcast episodes tied into the recent special issue. Moscow State University’s Natalia Rumak is our first gracious guest to take up my invitation to come and talk a bit about her research, ideas on publishing and to offer advice to other authors.

You can listen to the podcast in full here:

Interestingly, given Natalia’s incredible multi-linguistic scholastic abilities, we get onto a topic I’ve often been asked about: publishing in English when it’s not your native language. Given that Exchanges has a number of non-native English speakers on the team [2], not to mention my own PhD supervisor for that matter, I’ve always seen the great benefit writing in a second – or even third or fourth – language can offer. It can manifest in impeccable grammar, in interesting revelations, and in offering thought deriving from dissimilar cultural traditions producing unexpected insights.

I’m in the process of lining up conversations with another few authors from the issue as I write, so this won’t be the last of our authors you’ll hear from about their research. And meanwhile, behind the scenes of course work on our Autumn issue continues apace – meaning even more potential guests for future episodes to take us through the rest of the year.

Exciting times lie ahead!

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Endnotes

[1] Well, it is the core of my employment after all

[2] Especial mention to Marcos Estra who keeps teaching me these wonderous idiomatic Portuguese idioms – albeit translated into English – which I’ve certainly thrown into the odd conversation with…varying results.


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