PhD2Published – an academic writing and publishing support community

‘Publish or perish’ is a well worn directive in academia, less frequently touted is quality advice on how! PhD2Published was established in 2010 as a resource and community designed to channel academic publishing advice. Its founder and director, Charlotte Frost, had no clear publishing strategy on completion of her PhD and wondered if she was alone in experiencing that knowledge gap…

Today PhD2Published boasts hundreds of blog posts on various aspects of academic publishing from writing book proposals to dealing with reviewers comments on a journal article; presenting papers at conferences; publishing with open access journals; and professional networking – as well as countless tips on writing productivity. We receive well over 10,000 unique visitors a month and have a Twitter following of more than 15,000 people. Charlotte has presented PhD2Published at institutions including the Australian National University, Duke University and University College London and we have been featured in publications including Chronicle of Higher Education, the Guardian and Inside Higher Ed.

From the start PhD2Published was designed to promote writing and publishing skills at every level. Contributors can target the publishing issues most pertinent to their work, and develop a publishing strategy with an advisory network of thousands of experts. By writing across a range of social media platforms they can develop transferable skills in communicating on different platforms with different audiences. While managing editors can gain experience in running an open research resource.

In 2011 we launched the equally successful Academic Writing Month (or #AcWriMo) which is an annual academic write-a-thon held every November. It was inspired by NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) and unites people by the common goal of developing better and more sustainable writing habits. This project has upwards of 1000 participants every year, from more than 15 different countries, producing hundreds of journal articles, thousands of blog posts on academic writing techniques, and our #AcWriMo hashtag has a reach of over 300,000.

Academia is changing. With the arrival of the internet and digital publishing technologies, the limiting nature of traditional academic publishing and the potential for alternative models has been exposed. To date there have been numerous projects experimenting with new technology to augment and re-engineer the academic text, addressing everything from open access to peer review, networked and collaborative writing, data aggregation and visualisation, format adaptability and annotation (Charlotte even launched her own research project investigating the future of the art history book). Meanwhile the university system itself, which many argue was designed to train citizens and scholars for the working environments of the past, is under tremendous pressure to evolve. Now more than ever we need to understand all the implications of the publishing choices we make.

In 2015, after a whirlwind 5 years of operation, to better deal with these shifts and more fully meet the requirements of our committed community, we substantially restructured our website. We’d like to thank everyone who has contributed to PhD2Published over the years. It has grown beyond anything Charlotte expected when she first made those embarrassing video blogs from her glittery study. And we couldn’t have done that without your hard work and kindness. We hope you’ll help us make the next 5 years just as fruitful for the whole community and welcome all your ideas and suggestions for features and content for the future.