Writing a PhD is often viewed as an isolated and lonely endeavour (and at times it can be), but attending academic conferences, where sometimes hundreds of academics, PhD students, seminal authors and journal editors gather together affords opportunities to network, present papers, and receive useful feedback in some exotic and interesting locations! While this process might seem daunting, and at times terrifying (no really it can be), you can ultimately leave conference with greater confidence in your abilities, your ideas, and with an improved understanding of the latest trends and emerging ideas in your field! Over the next weeks and months, I will be adding sections to this blog, detailing my conference experiences, the highs, the lows, and hopefully some useful suggestions.
As a junior academic researcher, the issue of ‘innovativeness’ in academic research has been a continual cause of anxiety and doubt: is it wise for a Junior Scholar to be innovative?
If you’re wondering whether it’s a good idea to get your dissertation published, the answer is a no brainer: Yes, definitely. Although I will say this, you should be prepared to invest a lot of time and be dedicated enough to do it.
In April 2015, after months of hard work and sleepless nights, my Marketing dissertation on “Investigating consumer attitudes for young adults towards in-app advertising in the UAE” was finally complete. Before I walked down to hand in the very final copy of my dissertation I took one last look at it. I remembered how much I could not wait for this moment, to finally finish my dissertation and never look at it again. However, something had changed. I was suddenly very proud of what I had produced. I had put my heart into this thesis. I wanted to take this journey of extensive research and thorough analysis further.
So you’ve been accepted for a conference (hopefully somewhere exciting!), and your conference paper is ready to be presented to an assembly of your academic peers. Whilst one of the principal benefits of an academic conference can be the constructive criticism a presenter receives on their ideas, the opportunity to develop an academic network of researchers within your field is arguably as important.
Once you have made the decision to embark on putting your research ‘out there’ for others to see and hear, you need to decide where to do so. There are a range of forum through which you can choose ranging from large national and international conferences often hosted by disciplinary academies to smaller research workshops, seminars or conferences organised by more niche or specialist research groups. Within these many organisations will host events and colloquia aimed specifically at doctoral researchers, which vary considerably, to the elements of these events generally intended for ‘competitive’ research presentations.