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Most useful textbook and academic posts of the week: February 28, 2020

“You’ve got to get up every morning with determination if you’re going to go to bed with satisfaction.” – George LorimerAre you determined to succeed? At the end of the day, are you satisfied with your results? George Lorimer once said, “You’ve got to get up every morning with determination if you’re going to go to bed with satisfaction.” So what are you determined to do with your textbook and academic writing?

This week’s collection of articles from around the web includes discussion on the future of scholarly communication, how to get published, and an approach to teaching writing that works. It also includes ideas for experimenting and playing with data, looking at different aspects of the same problem, and funding research and innovation through open science efforts.

What all of these ideas, innovations, and results have in common is the determination of one or more individuals to bring an idea to fruition and share it with others. As you approach your writing projects this week, start each day with determination and end them with satisfaction. Happy writing!

Will the future of scholarly communication be pluralistic and democratic, or monocultural and authoritarian?

Over the past twenty years I’ve engaged in more discussions, and read more articles and reports, and listened to more presentations about the present and future of scholarly communication than I can possibly count. For me, each of these conversations, documents, and presentations serves as a single point in a large and growing mass of data. Looking at it in the aggregate, this data set reveals certain patterns. One of the patterns that has recently become clear to me is that the scholarly communication community — a huge, globally and ideologically diverse group of people and organizations — is struggling collectively to make a choice between two mutually incompatible options.

Free webinar: How to get published

What can I do to increase the chances of having my paper accepted? How long does it take for an article to get published? Who are good contacts to reach out to for more information about my article along the way? How can I play a role in the dissemination of my paper? Our free webinar will guide you through the author journey, from beginning to end.

It works

I knew – I know –  that my approach to teaching writing works. When I say “works,” I don’t mean to imply that every student is transformed or I bat a thousand when it comes to results meeting my intentions, but I know that my approach is grounded in something meaningful, that it is consistent, and pedagogically sound. I know why I’m doing what I’m doing and I know how to make adjustments in my approach depending on the outcomes.

Playing about with data

Not everything we do in our research has to have a definite end point. Sometimes it’s good to set aside all those anxieties about ‘getting through and getting done’. We might even like to take some time to simply play about with our data. Experiment. See what happens. Perhaps there are new insights to be gained from temporarily ignoring deadlines and producing drafts.

How I build bridges

Occasionally, I talk to researchers who are looking at different aspects of the same problem. When I do that, I like to introduce them to each other. A lot of the time, I suspect that not much comes of it – maybe they have a coffee. Maybe they are too busy. However, when it does work, it seems to work quite well.

An open agenda: European funder approaches to open science

Research funding organizations are the life-blood of research and innovation; they are uniquely positioned to influence and fundamentally shift publishing practices and in turn maximize the impact of research. Active engagement by public bodies in the scholarly communication system is not without controversy, however, as the response of some scientific societies and journal publishers to a rumored US Executive Order expanding the requirements of an already-existing policy on public access to federally funded research and open data shows.