Every research associate post I see advertised now has in large or small print, the requirement for the applicant to have a publishing record, preferably in three or four star journals. Now when you submit to a journal or a conference, you need to state your affiliation with a university, but if you haven’t got a post at a university, then you don’t have an affiliation, and you look less credible.
I’ve just submitted a paper for peer review at a conference where the uploading page required the name of my affliated university so I’ve put the name of the university where I completed my PhD and did the research that the paper is based on. But technically, I have no affiliation until I have a research associate post.
How do I get an research post without a publication when I can’t get a publication without an affiliation and I can’t have an affiliation without a post?
I have a few months off with very little paid work, and am devoting the time to writing articles for publication in learned journals. I have ideas for several papers from my thesis as well as one from my MRes and one from the project that I was working on in the summer.
But which learned journals? Which to target? That is the hard bit because to get the REF points that employers want, you need to be published in 3* and 4* journals from the list of business journals on the ABS list, but these are such competitive journals that everyone wants to get published in them, and so everyone submits and consequently there is a queue of papers for reviewing and publishing, which means that when you submit you have to wait months and months for feedback, whereas if you submit to a one or two star journal then you wait a shorter time for the feedback, and for the publishing. The sooner you publish, the sooner you can put it on your job applications, and scotch the competition because you’ve got a publication record. In my case I think it wiser to target lower starred journals and get published.
An alternative is to target journals on a different list, such as the Australian list of journals where some of their high-ranked journals are few stars on the ABS list.
So before you even start writing, you have to spend a week sussing out the journal ratings.
Fortunately one of my ex-supervisors has recommended a journal and although it’s ABS 3*, that’s what we’re writing for together. Writer’s block? No – journal targetting block – unblocked.