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Tag Archives: academic publishing
Temping with Atwood Tate can open up a world of opportunities and can put you on the road to employment as soon as tomorrow!
We thought we’d share some of our temps’ experiences and demonstrate the variety of roles available…
A Day In The Life Of . . . A Temporary Office Manager
What was your role and how long was the assignment for?
I was assigned to a trade book publisher as a Temporary Office Manager for 4 weeks.
Were you interviewed for the role?
Yes, briefly on the morning that I started in the role. They needed someone to fill the role quickly, at short-notice, so I started working there within two days of being told about the role.
What were your key duties?
As Office Manager, I was in charge of the Post-Room, which involved distributing incoming post, and ordering couriers and franking outgoing mail. It was also my duty to monitor and report any facilities issues within the office, and also to monitor and order office supplies. I also managed the logistics of author book signings in the office. Other duties included processing invoices, general administrative duties, and various ad-hoc duties as they arose.
Tell us about the culture?
The office was a friendly and welcoming environment to work in. As the office was open plan, the different departments were all very approachable, and there was a great sense of a team effort, supporting each other, across the entire office.
What did you like best?
What I liked best about this role was that it was a busy and changing role, where there were new challenges and opportunities each day. I also enjoyed the opportunity to interact and work with all of the departments in the office.
What did you learn?
I learnt a lot about how a trade book publisher works, and how each individual department plays a vital role in bringing a new book title to fruition. I also learnt a great deal about the logistics side of publishing, from sending out new releases for promotional purposes, how to order a courier to transport a large window display. Finally, I learnt the importance of ensuring a happy office, such as getting light bulbs changed quickly, ensuring the air conditioning works and keeping coffee supplies well stocked!
How did you find your experience with Atwood Tate?
I had a great experience with Atwood Tate, being kept informed at all stages of taking on the assignment as to what was going on, and being briefed along the way as to what the role would involve and what was expected of me. They were always available to contact by phone and email whenever needed to.
How did Atwood Tate approach you for the role? Were you registered on Atwood Tate’s database or was it via a job board?
I had registered for Temping opportunities with Atwood Tate, and they contacted me asking if it would be possible for me to start in the role immediately.
Interested in temporary opportunities? Please contact Atwood Tate’s temps team administrator, Michael Lawlor, at firstname.lastname@example.org
Today we have a guest post from STM publishing professional, Emma Williams.
After completing an MA in Publishing at the Oxford International Centre for Publishing Studies (OICPS) Emma began her career in STM Publishing almost 7 years ago at Elsevier, specializing in licensing and journal management. Emma is currently happily employed within the Health Sciences group at Wiley, helping partner societies to manage and develop their journals to their fullest potential. Also a former Society of Young Publishers Oxford Chair, Emma is a particularly keen follower of industry developments and innovation and interested in supporting early career professionals. Emma advocates The Scholarly Kitchen blog to nearly everyone she meets in Publishing, and is active on Twitter where you can get in touch via @TheRightsOne (personal) or @JournalsEmma (professional) respectively.
Stand Up For Science: Why STM Publishing in April is All About March?
You may not see it, but scientific and academic research is all around you. It helped build your house, fixed your headache, drove or cycled you to work, was mixed into your coffee and even contributed to that mysterious three lbs that you just can’t shake…
(Authors Note: This could also be the commonly practiced Schrodinger’s Biscuit Tin experiment too- if the lid is closed, are there even edible biscuits in there?)
Research in all its forms and fields is effectively the pursuit of an objective truth, often for the purpose of the benefit and/or advancement of humanity. In a time when ‘alternative’ facts and false news run riot, we must be like Indiana Jones and the Grail Knight- well informed so we can choose wisely. By this, I mean that we must try to understand and communicate the importance of well structured, methodologically sound, evidence based research practices and their contribution to defensible end results.
In the past, there have been barriers to communicating research to the public, outside of traditional scholarly journal publication.
Historically, science was commonly a pursuit for the wealthy elite and discussed in technically complex language between experts in the field firstly through correspondence, which eventually became formalized within Scholarly publishing. I would encourage everyone (especially all early career STM publishing professionals) to look at the creation of The Royal Society’s Philosophical Transactions for more on the development of early scholarly publishing.
Alongside the formalization of these academic conversations around research, history has also documented public distrust of science and scientists. Perhaps this relates to an amount of disconnect from scientific conversation, but it may also be defensive (science is always a potential catalyst for innovation) against change for reasons which people may not like, be ready for, or even fully understand. This is clearly documented internationally in many cases of fear of ‘magic’ or witchcraft, religious conflict, and even cultural stereotyping.
Just think briefly for a moment on events like the Salem Witch Trials (circa 1692), or films such as Terminator (1984). Consider novels like Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (1886) or Frankenstein (1818). What about the depictions in both old and new media primarily made for young children, of Belle’s so called ‘crackpot’ inventor father in the story of Beauty and the Beast (1991) ? His eccentricity (i.e. scientific curiosity) predisposes him to such general public concern that he is nearly sent to an asylum- a particularly terrifying and often permanent commitment in past days. It is clear that in the historic public consciousness, there were very real fears that scientific curiosity, or developments, left unchecked would then get humanity ‘in over their heads’ across a variety of situations.
I believe that most people, living during even the more modern dates of some of these examples, would have thought of 2017 as sufficiently advanced into ‘The Future’, to expect better understanding, explanation and truthful rationalization of some of these fears. However, the modern citizen now faces a frightening time- we see heightened (or certainly more vocalized) opposition to evidence-based science; fear of globalization; and concerns about access to quality education.
So where can we find these trusted truths, to understand our world, communicate with each other and inform appropriate decision making for public good?
Although publishers and academia alike have recognized and begun to rectify some of the conversational gaps between academic research reporting and the general public through a wide variety of science engagement initiatives (Pint of Science events, or Publisher blogs for example) there is clearly still a lot of work to be done around mitigating unfounded fears and improving integrative discussion.
Now more than ever, the public must be able to either understand research processes directly, or to trust a third party to understand these and then report research results accordingly. Only then can we assess that end result and allow it to inform our own decisions and opinions. If we are not able to understand or we do not have access to such trusted sources, we are increasingly vulnerable to choosing poorly, and any ensuing negative consequences on an individual, national and a global level.
This is why scientists, academics, publishers and many other people gathered in various locations worldwide to March for Science on Saturday 22nd April. My personal experience of the global research community is that it is richly diverse, and full of those who have decided to embrace their curiosity about how something works, or could be improved, or could be learned from, and report back to the rest of us. I consider these people- our scientists and researchers- as an advanced guard, gathering intelligence on everything from climate change to medicine to lessons from history.
It is my opinion that we should fund and support research and engage with scientists and academics wherever possible in order to ensure that we don’t repeat mistakes, help people faster and preserve our world for generations to come.
For more information, please see:
Want more? Please see the below articles that the author came across while writing this, for ‘interesting’ further reading:
1. ‘Fake research’ comes under scrutiny, by H. Briggs, BBC News, 27th March 2017. Accessed via http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-39357819 on 18th April 2017.
2. 8 Hilarious Historical Fears That Seriously Delayed Progress by P. Carnell, Cracked, March 11th 2015. Accessed via http://www.cracked.com/article_22224_8-plainly-stupid-fears-that-held-back-human-progress.html on 17th April 2017.
3. We have always been modern, and it has often scared us by R. Higgitt, The Guardian, 24th June 2013. Accessed via https://www.theguardian.com/science/the-h-word/2013/jun/24/technology-history-modernity-speed-fears on 18th April 2017.
Companies: Why You Should Consider Temps
Our articles on temping have typically been to inform candidates of the many benefits that come with temping, both professionally and personally. But today, we’d like to point out the many reasons why temping is such a useful avenue for clients to consider.
The flexibility of temps also means company flexibility.
If you’re expanding your team but you’re not quite prepared to hire a permanent person, a temporary employee is a great way to establish exactly what it is you need in terms of additional resources. Maybe you’ve never had extra hands on deck and you’re only now starting to realise the new objectives you can tackle. A temp-to-perm scenario can be a match made in heaven for company and employee alike. As someone grows into a newly created role and reveals the kind of results that can be produced with more staff. The manager can then take these results to HR as Exhibit A on what expanding the team can mean for everyone.
But more than that,
Temps bring their own expertise with them.
They don’t need to be entry-level candidates acting as a stop-gap. By hiring consultants or veteran freelancers, a company also gets to avail of a temporary worker’s own experiences, the different business practices they’ve witnessed in their time. New blood often means new ideas and even if the worker doesn’t stick around, their contributions can last forever.
And, of course,
Temporary workers can provide much needed breathing space to permanent employees.
When the day-to-day administration is taken off their hands, they’re able to concentrate on the bigger picture and implement the projects. This improve service and streamline practices. You can get a lot done when you don’t have to sweat the small stuff. Even if it’s only for a little while.
So, for anyone who’s currently reviewing team numbers or work-loads, don’t commit until you know for sure exactly what you need – try a temp today! Get in touch with Kellie Millar, who manages our Temps and Freelancers desk, or her colleague, Alison Redfearn, and they can send you more workers than you can shake a stick at!
5 reasons to get a temp:
- Cover sick leave
- Cover holiday
- Help with a project
- Flexibility – have for 1 day / 1 week / 1 month…
- No admin – we cover all payment, NI, holiday pay, pension
Creating the Future of Academic Publishing
On the 23rd of January our consultant Christina will be attending: Creating the Future of Academic Publishing: Strengthening the Research Ecosystem.
A conference in London as part of Academic Book Week and created by Emerald Publishing. The event is a chance to discuss academic publishing and reignite the old debates around the sector of publishing. The attendees will be reviewing the last five years of publishing and discussing the merges within publishing that have been going on!
It is sure to be a very interesting evening and we’re looking forward to hearing the feedback and ideas that are discussed.
Are you going? You can book your tickets on Eventbrite, here.
Last Thursday, OPuS held an event to discuss Museum and Cultural Publishing. The speakers were Declan McCarthy (Ashmolean Museum), Samuel Fanous (The Bodleian Library) and Katie Bond (National Trust). John Hudson (Historic England) was the Chair.
The publishing and retail scene in museums, galleries and the heritage sector has been resilient during the recent unsettled years in publishing, and is a significant component of the wider cultural sector which is one of our national success stories. Within the sector, books are published on a variety of models – on a fully commercial basis or one of cost recovery, or in some cases conscious subsidy as part of a wider agenda. In this session, publishers from the National Trust, The Bodleian Library and the Ashmolean Museum, all based locally, describe their business and the particular characteristics of the cultural publishing sector.
- Lots of cultural publishers are members of ACE: The Association of Cultural Enterprises
- The Ashmolean publishing programme focuses on event catalogs, tied to the 3-5 exhibitions the museum holds each year. These differ from general trade books in that the sales are tied very strongly to the actual exhibition, and any sales beyond a show are a bonus.
- For the Ashmolean, business is still very focused around producing beautiful, physical books. E-books, apps, and other digital forms do exist and are continually looked into, but at the moment they are not viable revenue generators.
- Whilst the Bodleian has always published, the current publishing programme is still very new and has been grown gradually and carefully.
- Public engagement is fundamental to the continued survival of cultural institution, and a publishing programme is a useful tool for this.
- The Bodleian has several different approaches it takes when publishing titles: 1) doing a direct facsimile edition of an out-of-print book, 2) repackaging material in a new format, 3) publishing newly authored titles (that often use illustrations and source material from the collections), 4) gift-books to bring in a new audience of non-scholars.
- The National Trust has over 200 shops – that is more nationally than Waterstones – and around 50% of their book revenues come from sales in those shops. The other 50% is primarily from sales in the UK trade. Like the Ashmolean, most of their sales are print, with digital and ebooks having more presence overseas.
- Along with the annual Handbook that goes to all National Trust members, and the individual property guidebooks which are done in-house, they also publishing specialist books, illustrated narrative non-fiction, and children’s books. These are published in partnership with Nosy Crows, Pavilion, and Faber & Faber.
- A book that sells well in the Trade does not (always) sell well in the gift-shops, and vice versa. Katie has learnt that the more a book is embedded in the organisation and ties back to their core message, the better it does.
- The Children’s market is challenging, nostalgic, brand driven, infuriating, hard to break in to, but with massive talent, potential, and hugely rewarding.
- As an editor you may come across challenges from elsewhere in your organisation about why you commissioned a particular title from a particular author. You need to know what you are publishing and why, and don’t be afraid to stick to your guns if it is important. That is the editors job!
All in all, it was a fascinating evening learning about a sector of the industry many of us are not aware of. The main lesson I learned was that publishing in the heritage sector requires a thorough understanding of the requirements of your market, a deep appreciation for the uniqueness of your source material (be that a museum, a library collection, or several hundred distinct properties around the country), a creative mind to see the new potential, and the willingness to take a risk on something that hasn’t been done before.
Three weeks ago Claire and I attended the annual ALPSP conference, which brings together a large number of scholarly and professional publishing professionals from across the UK and overseas. The conference was hosted over three days (14-16th September) and delegates were treated to a packed schedule of presentations, panel discussions and networking opportunities.
The key discussion points at the conference were:
- The disruption caused by digital developments, which affect the publishing industry as a whole, and how companies can future proof their brands and products. We should let technology lead, not disrupt.
- Metrics and the ever-expanding range available. How can Metrics be used to measure publication performance as well as other research outputs and activities. What is the future of research evaluation?
- The evolution of peer review and its relevance today. How can peer review be used effectively in different communities, if at all. How is peer review used outside of scientific publications and what specifics should it address.
- The data revolution and the implications this has. Publishers can’t solely be content businesses. They need to be innovative and become technology companies to stay relevant.
On the second night of the conference the ALPSP Awards were hosted. The Award for Contribution to Scholarly Publishing was given to Alice Meadows, Director of Community Engagement and Support at ORCID. Awards for Innovation were given to Cartoon Abstracts by Taylor & Francis and Wiley ChemPlanner.
Next year’s conference is being hosted in the Netherlands. We’ll see you there!
We are excited to welcome Lisa – the newest member of the Atwood Tate team!
After completing her MA in Publishing at Oxford Brookes, Lisa spent two years working in the Children’s and Educational Rights team at Oxford University Press.
She has recently joined Atwood Tate as a Publishing Recruitment Consultant and will be based in our Oxford office. She’ll be mainly focusing on Academic, Professional, and STM roles outside of the London region, but don’t hesitate to drop her a line if you are interested in publishing roles in general as she can always put you in contact with another member of the team.
01865 339 529
It was my 3rd time at the annual ALPSP Conference (9-11 September) and as usual, it was a great opportunity to catch up with lots of people (both our candidates and clients) and hear the latest thoughts from scholarly publishers worldwide.
If you weren’t able to get there, I’m not going to summarise all the sessions I attended as the lovely team at ALPSP has done a superb job of adding audio and slides to their Conference Programme, which means you can have a look yourself! (Thanks Suzanne, Audrey, Lesley, Dee and Sabia)
Sessions I thought particularly of interest:
Smart ways for small publishers to go global: Peter Richardson, Managing Director, British Editorial Society of Bone & Joint Surgery told us the answer lies in strategic partnerships with other organisations and talked through pros and cons of outsourcing and maintaining editorial control.
Have I got standards for you? chaired by Laura Cox: we had some interesting perspectives from a small publisher perspective with Leighton Chipperfield, Director of Publishing and Income Diversification, Society for General Microbiology and the other end of the scale with Laird Barrett, Senior Digital Product Manager (Journals), Taylor & Francis outlining how they implement publishing standards.
I thought I’d list the finalists for their Awards for Innovation in Publishing – the winner was Kudos.
Bookmetrix from Altmetric and Springer SBM
CHORUS – advancing public access to research
eLife Lens open-source reading tool from eLife
Impact Vizor from HighWire Press
JSTOR Daily online magazine
Kudos toolkit for researchers and their publishers
Overleaf authorship tool
RightFind XML for Mining from the Copyright Clearance Center
The Xvolution board game from NSTDA
More info about the winners: http://www.alpsp.org/Ebusiness/AboutALPSP/ALPSPAwards.aspx