Dr. Victor C. X. Wang, an acclaimed researcher and scholar, has published many outstanding reference books and scholarly journals with IGI Global and other internationally-recognized publishers, and has seen great success throughout the years in regards to the dissemination of his publications around the world. Here, Dr. Wang shares his strategy on how to maximize the potential of academic research, and how to effectively circulate scholarly content to benefit academics around the world.
How did you become involved in research that centers on technology advancements in education?
Educators as far back as the 1970s made the prediction that education would be delivered “electronically” in the 21st Century. Technology has permeated every aspect of our lives, and can provide endless opportunities in accelerated learning. Like my colleagues and students, I benefit from technology on a daily basis. I enjoy teaching and learning with technology. I began to fully teach online in 2002. Nowadays, many traditional universities (brick and mortar; four-walled classrooms) have begun to offer their courses online or via MOOCS to reach learners far and wide, indeed globally. In a sense, technology has helped stimulate local economies in each state. Out of state and international students taking college courses with the help of technology have brought billions of dollars in revenue to universities in each state.
How long have you worked with IGI Global? Why do you choose IGI Global as your publisher?
I began to publish research articles and books with IGI Global in 2008. Some colleagues ask me whether I am an editor at IGI Global (in terms of a staff capacity). I am not. However, I am the founding Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Adult Vocational Education and Technology (IJAVET). This journal has achieved great success, and has received an endorsement from former President of the International Adult and Continuing Education Hall of Fame, Dr. Edgar Boone.
Prior to 2008, I did not know about IGI Global. At that time, I submitted a chapter proposal to an IGI Global editor from the University of Wisconsin. Later, I was introduced to Dr. Lawrence Tomei, an Editor for IGI Global and the Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor of the School of Education and Social Sciences at Robert Morris University. I became aware of his forthcoming encyclopedia, the Encyclopedia of Information Technology Curriculum Integration, and contributed 8 peer-reviewed chapters to the volume. Then, shortly after, I published a journal article in Dr. Tomei’s journal, International Journal of Information and Communication Technology Education (IJICTE), and received further support from Dr. Tomei. I consider Dr. Tomei to be a “transformational leader” and above all, a leading scholar, a true humanist with a soul that believes in helping others, colleagues and students, even from other universities.
Have you published with other publishers? If so, how was your experience?
I have published with Pearson Education, Krieger Publishing Company, Information Age, and Zhejiang University Science in China. Roughly speaking, I have published close to 60 books. I publish approximately 3-6 books per academic year. Each publisher has different policies. Some publishers do not provide “in-house” editors or editing. In rare cases, some publishers may not coordinate the indexing and abstracting of their titles. Of course, publishers determine prices of these books. My best experience with all these publishers is that almost all of my books are refereed (peer-reviewed). This guarantees the quality of my books. Publishing with IGI Global specifically affords me the opportunity to work with their in-house development and production groups, and also with a robust peer-review process facilitated by the editorial management system, eEditorial Discovery®.
How does IGI Global compare with other publishers?
IGI Global is a leading publisher of academic research; not a commercial publisher. Despite some existing issues (these issues are with every publisher), IGI Global has streamlined its publication process and editorial system to work with well-established authors and editors to ensure the quality of its publications. From contract signing, to the development of books, IGI Global offers superior, timely assistance to editors and authors. Nowhere can you find a more professional publisher of academic research. Its leaders, including its President, call upon well-established authors and editors periodically to solicit feedback and improve its service to a wide range of audiences. I feel comfortable calling IGI Global’s staff and leaders whenever I need to. One last suggestion, I hope IGI Global will publish textbooks in addition to reference materials to serve more audiences.
How can other IGI Global editors maximize the exposure of their publications? What resources are required to pursue this, and does IGI Global provide support in this area?
To increase the exposure of my work, I share press releases, title abstracts, book brochures, discount forms and emails with primarily two listservs in North America. One is AAACE’s listserv, because I am a current member of AAACE. The other one is a listserv in Canada. My colleagues introduced me to that listserv because so many Canadian scholars have published their research with me. I also send these materials to my former and current colleagues and students. Many of them are college deans, university provosts, department chairs and journal editors. I maintain a listserv and keep contact lists. Google mail does a good job in this regard. Every time I send an email or receive an email from a colleague, Google keeps this email address automatically. So far, my Google mail has kept several thousand email addresses.
I also invite researchers and PhD students to write book reviews and publish these reviews in high-impact journals. In many cases, some researchers/scholars write book reviews on their own and publish them in other journals. My current employer, Florida Atlantic University, also holds a book signing event every academic year where I showcase my titles as well. I have seen esteemed scholars promoting their publications via YouTube videos and their endeavors have been very successful there as well.
Ultimately, university libraries must support your research. If librarians frown upon approving new publications and consider you an inexperienced researcher, libraries will most likely not purchase your books or other publications. It is vitally important to build rapport with university library deans and librarians. Also, it is important to note that I have found that librarians do rely very heavily on scholars in the field (faculty members) to lend their scholarly expertise in making suitable title recommendations to the library in support of a comprehensive collection development process. When looking at the impact that researchers can have on the discoverability of their titles at their respective institutions, an edited monograph can have research contributions from upwards of 30+ to even hundreds of authors. If each of these authors is having impactful communications with their institution’s library, the greater the possibility that the content will be acquired and circulated among patrons of the library.
Some other researchers are doing better than me as a book author/editor collaborating with university libraries. For example, Dr. Tomei’s encyclopedia has been cataloged by over 300 universities worldwide. That is a huge success. And of course, I try to emulate Dr. Tomei.
Do you establish a timeline for outreach to your colleagues and associates? What is the best time to start promoting your work when publishing?
As soon as a book is about to hit the press (if not sooner), I start to send flyers to colleagues and associates via listservs. It is extremely important to inform other researchers about upcoming book so they can recommend publications to their librarian for addition to the library. By the time the librarian makes the decision to acquire your book and then order it through a distributor, it takes as long as 3-6 months. Therefore, it is essential for those who find value in your publication and want to access its contents, to recommend the book to their institution’s librarian ASAP.
Overall, author engagement is key in maximizing the potential of academic research. Here is a summary of actions that you can take to make other researchers around the world aware of your publication(s):
- Join a listserv or collect email contacts for outreach
- Share your IGI Global book brochures and discount forms
- Request a press release for your title
- Share title abstracts, book covers, webpages, etc.
- Ask esteemed colleagues or journal editors to review the book
- Coordinate promotional events at your university
- Attend conferences to promote your work
- Establish and maintain relationships with your institution’s librarian community
- Enlist the support of your IGI Global Marketing contact for supplementary marketing materials: email@example.com
- For serial publications, consider creating an awards program honoring top research articles and/or advisory board members/reviewers
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