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Strategies for Successful Journal Publications Rachael E. Goodhue University of California, Davis.

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Presentation on theme: "Strategies for Successful Journal Publications Rachael E. Goodhue University of California, Davis."— Presentation transcript:

1 Strategies for Successful Journal Publications Rachael E. Goodhue University of California, Davis

2 Steps to Success Choosing your topic Choosing your topic Doing the work and drafting the paper Doing the work and drafting the paper Polishing the paper for submission Polishing the paper for submission Choosing a title Choosing a title Choosing a journal Choosing a journal Revising and resubmitting Revising and resubmitting Proofreading Proofreading

3 Topic Choose a topic that interests you. Choose a topic that interests you. –If you want to publish, it should interest others –When you begin a project, write down why you think it’s interesting –Your topic should have broader implications beyond answering its immediate research question How do you find such a topic? How do you find such a topic?

4 Topic Three ways to find a topic Read the literature Read the literature –Published work is often already old –Online resources for fresher work –Conferences Read the newspaper Read the newspaper Talk to people Talk to people –Policymakers, industry members

5 Topic Literature on doing economic research and writing for graduate students Literature on doing economic research and writing for graduate students –Varian, “How to Write an Economic Model in Your Spare Time” –edited volume by Medema and Samuels There may be a tradeoff between your interest and other factors. There may be a tradeoff between your interest and other factors. –Funding –Advisors

6 Working and Drafting: When Is It Done? Have you answered your research question? Have you answered your research question? –Does your original question still apply? –Have other questions emerged? Can you answer them? –If you are no longer answering your original question, does the organization and the content of your paper reflect the change? Have you interpreted your results in a useful way, e.g. using elasticities? Have you interpreted your results in a useful way, e.g. using elasticities? –Coefficients aren’t always enough –Neither are mathematical expressions with no explanation of their content

7 Working and Drafting What does “done” mean if it’s from your signed dissertation? What does “done” mean if it’s from your signed dissertation? –How much analysis to include in a paper? –How much information to leave out? Ask your advisors Ask your advisors Compare to published articles in the area Compare to published articles in the area Very few signed dissertations are written completely to the standard of refereed journals Very few signed dissertations are written completely to the standard of refereed journals

8 Title Title should describe content Title should describe content –Choose the important components of content Cute titles are rewarding, but Econlit doesn’t have a sense of humor Cute titles are rewarding, but Econlit doesn’t have a sense of humor –Nor does Google

9 Polish Your Work If you don’t care, no one else will If you’re proud of your research, then invest the time necessary to meet professional standards

10 Polishing: Introduction Checklist Checklist –Research question –Context –Placement in relevant literature Refine by Refine by –Presenting your work –Writing multiple introductions –Reading others’ work –Having others read yours

11 Polishing: Analysis Consistent notation Consistent notation All variables defined when first used All variables defined when first used Consistent presentation Consistent presentation –Example: first- and second-best solutions Explanation of steps, techniques Explanation of steps, techniques –Enough for reader to follow –No more!

12 Polishing: Tables Tables Tables –Verify content –Cross-check content with text –Uniform format –Informative titles, labels, names Not everyone remembers your variable names Not everyone remembers your variable names –Numbering and text references

13 Polishing: Graphs Graphs Graphs –Numbering and text references –Informative titles –Informative labels –Clearly distinct lines, points for different series

14 Polishing: Citations and References Citations and reference list –All citations in the reference list –All references cited –All references complete –Check spelling of names

15 Polishing: Writing Matters Edit for clarity Edit for clarity Edit for spelling, grammar and style Edit for spelling, grammar and style Edit EVERYTHING Edit EVERYTHING –Footnotes –Tables –Graphs –Reference list Sloppy writing is sloppy thinking Sloppy writing is sloppy thinking

16 Journal Choosing a journal Choosing a journal –Publishes work in your area –Is read by people who work in your area –Is well-regarded –Speed of review process Preparing your paper for the chosen journal Preparing your paper for the chosen journal –Style requirements –Length requirements –Observed style of published articles

17 Rejection! Read referee comments, and revise accordingly Read referee comments, and revise accordingly –Mistake -- correct –Misunderstanding – rewrite –Reread the paper Your perspective may have changed with time Your perspective may have changed with time Rewrite Rewrite Choose a second journal Choose a second journal

18 Revision and Resubmission Think positively Think positively –Very few papers are immediately accepted Plan your revision before beginning Plan your revision before beginning –Overlapping comments –Contradictory comments Keep track of your revisions Keep track of your revisions –Write responses as you complete them –Make it easy for the referee to check your responses

19 Proofreading Always proof your page proofs Always proof your page proofs –Errors Yours Yours Copy editor’s Copy editor’s –Updating facts Equations and tables particularly susceptible Equations and tables particularly susceptible

20 Good Luck! Next year: The Reprint Question


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