By way of an experiment in openness I have created page on the HEIWP Research Blogwhich gives a description of all of research and writing that I am involved in, and includes links to the current drafts of any papers.

The draft papers are live and public: anyone can read them, and importantly anyone can comment on them. I’m hoping this will mean that I am able to engage in an ongoing and iterative peer review process with anyone that is interested. It also means I can quickly ping a link to someone I’ve talked to about any of these pieces of work, so they can more easily see and read it.

The origins of this idea come from another occurrence at the Discourses of Inclusion conference. I supported two of the Editors – Liz Marr and Liz Thomas – of the journal Widening Participation and Lifelong Learning in giving a workshop about ‘Getting Published’. We wanted to demonstrate the peer review process to the workshop attendees, by getting them to review a paper. In the absence of any time to ask existing WPLL authors if they would mind, I dished out a draft of a paper I am working on with Lindsay Hewitt (OU in Scotland). To cut a long story short, the paper was panned. I have photographic evidence of flipcharts to prove it:

To make the experience especially surreal, as I was the designated scribe for the workshop, I had to write these actual comments onto the paper. Ouch. What’s most interesting is that I didn’t implode, despite the best intentions of the 30 reviewers sitting in front of me intent on shredding my self-esteem. I realised instead that I was really pleased that in the space of 20 minutes I had received more detailed comment and feedback on that paper than most authors get.

So I thought – why not expose myself to critical ridicule on a daily basis?!

Anyway, here’s an invite to you all, if you are interested or have the time, to read and comment on these projects.

http://www.open.ac.uk/blogs/wideningparticipation/?page_id=429
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