(25 Oct 2021) A new journal concept from Cambridge University Press will bring researchers from different fields together around the fundamental questions that cut across traditional disciplines.
By focussing research on finding answers to such questions, this unique approach will speed discovery by fostering collaboration and knowledge sharing between subject communities. It will also provide opportunities to publish research from areas that are not well served by traditional, discipline-specific journals.
Informed by feedback from hundreds of researchers, the first titles under the Research Directions banner will launch in 2022, with an initial set of questions and a publishing model that mirrors the research lifecycle, with results, analysis and impact reviews all published as separate, Open Access, peer-reviewed and citable outputs on the Press’s Cambridge Core platform.
In contrast to the traditional, self-contained research paper, researchers will be able to contribute at different stages in the process, sharing and building on each other’s work. They can submit results that address the questions posed, or analysis of others’ results, offering alternative insights and interpretations and using the findings to inform their own work. As the final part of the process, review articles will bring together the work done in response to particular questions, describing the context and the impact of what has been published.
After the initial launch of each journal, its future questions will be shaped within the research community, with proposals debated and refined before they are formally posed by the journals’ editorial boards.
At each stage, contributors will also be able to link research published on Cambridge Core to preprints, data, conference presentations and other supporting material that they post on the Press’s early research platform, Cambridge Open Engage, improving transparency and the reproducibility of results.
Cambridge Open Engage will further complement the formal publication of research on Cambridge Core by providing a space for discussion and feedback, helping authors refine their work and allowing wider input from the research community.
Research Directions is the brainchild of Fiona Hutton, Executive Publisher at the Press and its Head of STM Open Access Publishing. A former research scientist, she desires to provide alternatives to traditional journal formats and bring communities together to frame research to problems that no one discipline would be able to tackle alone.
The original press release can be found here.