Perils & pitfalls for early career researchers

Predatory publishing continues to be a trap for young players with more and more early  career researchers falling victim.  When this happens, not only do they effectively lose ownership and copyright of their hard work (with that the ability to publish it elsewhere), they often lose confidence, they can lose standing in their field, and they most certainly lose the potential for their research to be cited and shared with other researchers and future collaborators.

Looking for a publisher for your research should be a more of an experience like buying a new laptop or a car.  Hopefully you don’t buy the first shiny thing you see.  Hopefully you rely on people whose opinion you respect.  Hopefully you check out the product reviews and comparison websites to see what your options are.   Hopefully you don’t send a cash deposit after receiving a spam email from a car dealer.

Your diligence when looking for a potential publisher should likewise be seen as an investment in your future.  Look to the journals the experts in your field are publishing in.  Look to the journals your peers are publishing in.  As an early career researcher, reputable journals will not send you email invitations to publish with them so don’t be tempted by vanity publishers.  Don’t let your desperation for publication override your common sense.

Follow the Think Check Submit protocols.  If you are still not certain, ask your faculty or liaison librarian to help you.

Predatory conferences, like predatory journals can also be difficult to spot, and without due diligence you can end up at a dodgy hotel, in a scary part of town, signing your authorship rights away and delivering a paper to six people, who will likely be the only people who ever hear about your research.  You can check the Pivot database on the QUT Library’s databases page for legitimate calls for submissions for conference papers.

Think Check Submit