Reflecting on Publications


Last Tuesday the Hive Scholars hosted a Doctoral Discussion on publishing research as a doctoral candidate.

We were lucky to host an exquisitely talented panel spanning Psychology, Medicine, Politics, and Physics. However, the diversity went far beyond a range of disciplinary commitments; it reflected to the diffuse and variegated nature of what ‘academic’ publishing is today.

Jenny Morris from Psychology published a piece for The Conversation detailing the current consensus on overeating. Soon after, the Daily Mail republished the piece to much fanfare. Since publishing the article, Jenny has gone on to do a placement in science communication.
Katy Budge came to academia from an illustrious career in the civil service, where she was most recently the head of constitutional policy for the cabinet office.  Her publications include a book chapter exploring the experience of aid workers who rescue migrants at sea in the southernmost part of Europe; a piece in the conversation imploring EU member states to bolster and follow through with asylum commitments, and a scathing critique of the Government’s recent decision to exercise war powers in Syria without first consulting parliament, published in the Huffington Post.

Philippa Cole’s research focusses on primordial black holes and the astrophysics of the early universe. She recently had an article published in the Journal of Cosmology of Astroparticle Physics. The article proves, inter alia, that “an extended early matter era is incompatible with the argument that an evaporating primordial black hole would destroy the universe”.


The discussion revealed the diversity of supervisor-student interactions around the publication process — with more public-facing materials, supervisory involvement was expectedly minimal. On the other hand, our panel also recounted some situations where the guiding hand of a senior academic was a crucial part of the publication process.

The experiences of panellists also shed light on the breadth of editing practices from publishers; some publishers did no editing at all, while others (both media outlets and peer reviewed journals) requested significant revisions prior to publication.  

There was a consensus among panel members that publishing was a positive experience no matter what the outlet was. That positivity could be a product of increased visibility within an academic field, reflection on the strengths and limitations of one’s own work, and relevant commercial work following on from publication.

For those that attended, we hope you enjoyed our final Doctoral Discussion of the year. As always, feedback and comments are welcome here or at researchhive@sussex.ac.uk.

Ketan

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