Voices In Psychology

A round-up of our regular programme to identify and nurture new writing talent in Psychology, plus our 2022 opportunities.

In 2018, we launched our new 'Voices In Psychology' programme. As we explained then:

"We’re always listening out for ‘Voices in Psychology’. People who can take often complex ideas and communicate them in a way that will engage and inform our large and diverse audience. Writers with real impact, who are learning to avoid some of the traps of academic writing. They’re the future of our science, of our Society, of our magazine.

But perhaps you need help to find that voice. Perhaps you’ve got that certain something but you need practice, nurturing. We think we’ve made a real effort with this in recent years, providing opportunities and guidance to many first-time authors. Now we’ve started to develop a more formal structure to this process…"

Since then, we have aimed to identify, celebrate and nurture new talent in communicating Psychology. We pose a question, judge entries, publish the best in The Psychologist and then seek to be alongside the winners in their continuing journey. We look to provide opportunities, advice, and sometimes practical support.

Here, we gather them together (linked from the titles):

Why do we need Psychology? And what does Psychology need? Zoe Sanderson, Gunjan Sharma, Beth Carrington, Ciara Wild, Becky Scott, Beth Clare McManus, Daniella Watson

What makes a Psychologist? Hayley Gains, Tom Hostler, Stephanie Droop, Laura Oxley, Daniella Nayyar, plus several runners up

What are the barriers to our profession, and how can we remove them? Winners: Joanna Atkinson, Nicolo Zarotti, Charlotte Leedale, Fiona Gilton. Runners up: Will Sham, Kavita Solder, Karina Webb, Annayah Prosser, Amanda Owles, Sarah Idowu 

What Very Important thing have you lost or found on your psychology journey? Congratulations to Holly Risdon, Leah Orme, Jillian Geary and Joshua Sewell.

How can we flourish? Guan Mao, Elizabeth Otterburn, Tara Lepore.  

Guest editors – Early Career issue

So far, the emphasis has been on writing, as a clear and concrete part of the communication process. But on The Psychologist we know better than most that writing is just one part of it. Now we’re hoping to reach out to budding editors.

Editing The Psychologist is about much more than moving apostrophes and slashing other people’s work to bits. An editor shapes each edition, seeking to fill it with appropriate voices, and diversity in terms of contributor and format (e.g. article, interview, debate etc). Sometimes it’s appropriate to push those voices even more to the fore: there are good reasons why other magazines and programmes have occasional ‘Guest editors’, and we would like to give that a go.

We’re looking for a person or team of people to come up with a vision for a special edition of The Psychologist devoted to Early Career Researchers. As we write, with many academics taking industrial action, the pressures facing ECRs are in our minds, and we would like to explore any challenges and opportunities that are specific to, or enhanced in, the discipline of Psychology. 

The guest editor(s) will commission, write, edit and prepare material for publication in a special issue. This would be great experience for someone potentially looking to make science communication a part of their career. But don’t worry if it sounds like a lot to take on: we will be alongside you all the way. We’ve never tried this before, so exactly what form your input would take and the extent of it is all up for discussion. The main requirements are voice and vision.

Despite a stated focus on Early Career Researchers, we’re not ruling out contributions from those starting out on professional pathways. There are likely to be overlaps, such as research informing practice and vice versa. The key for us is the voice of the next generation and an eye on the future.

To enter, email your ideas for the issue – no more than a side of A4, simply outlining an overarching theme or guiding question, topics, potential contributors, formats – to [email protected] by 1 March. In your email, tell us a little bit about yourself, where you are in your Psychology journey, and your interest in science communication. Informal enquiries can be sent to Madeleine on [email protected].

Stories of Psychology: Spotlight on class

We're also running a separate scheme, looking for contributions to our special summer edition focused on the Society Senate-voted theme of 'tackling class-based inequality'. We want to hear from/about Psychologists addressing class, or not, in research and practice. Respond however you see fit, with creative, artistic and even fictional responses welcomed. Under-represented voices are especially encouraged, as we want to hear new perspectives. Seek to engage as well as inform. A starting point could be what has changed around class in Psychology, and / or what still needs to change?

To enter, email your contribution of up to 1,000 words to [email protected] by 1 April. In your email, include a couple of paragraphs on yourself, where you are in your Psychology journey, and your interest in science communication.

Dr Jon Sutton
Managing Editor

Maddi Pownall, University of Leeds
Associate Editor for Voices In Psychology

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