Thursday, 24 April 2014

Meet the Editors: Alex Clark

Five Things About Alex

1. Why did you become a nurse?

For pragmatic rather than deeply philosophical reasons. My life had taken a difference course – into building and surveying. Youthful though I was, I quickly realized I did not like this choice. I knew lots of nurses and they seemed to enjoy it. It harnessed a good mixture of people and technical skills. Finally, it seemed to be a very practical qualification that would always be in demand. It was a good decision and I never regret it. Never.

2. Why did you become an editor?

Again, fairly accidentally via becoming Associate Dean (Research) and taking on the editorship of the International Journal of Qualitative Methodology as part of leading the International Institute of Qualitative Methodology. I reviewed lots of papers and it is a great way to stay one step ahead in your discipline – to see the best work and hopefully improve this work at a formative stage. Everything takes more time but editing is a vital support to the global community of researchers while interacting with authors and their papers helps your own knowledge, expertise and writing. What’s not to like?

3. What advice would you give to aspiring editors?

Don’t compromise your standards. Don’t expect perfection. Support cutting-edge ideas even though they may still need development. It is far easier to knock a house down than build one – so don’t be too critical. Get involved as a reviewer any way you can. It is fun and you will learn lots.

4. What are the main challenges for nursing in the next decade?

Depends where in the world. In low and middle-income countries, addressing the needs of the rapidly aging population with chronic disease will be huge. Health systems have more limited capacity and nurses can play a huge role in fostering good prevention, effective self-care and mobilizing support from families. In high-income countries, ensuring the profession’s credibility, perceived value and distinctive contributions relative to other disciplines and new professions (like physician’s assistants) will be key. Across the world – there has never been a better or more important time to be a nurse who uses research evidence.

5. Who do you recommend to follow on Twitter?

Me: (@alexclark1944) to keep you informed about qualitative research, comedy people @JosieLong and @RealBobMortimer to keep you smiling and all the people you admire to keep you connected.


Thursday, 10 April 2014

Meet the Editors: Seamus Cowman

Five Things About Seamus

1. Why did you become a nurse?

When I finished secondary school in Ireland I had no real direction on what career I might pursue. Rural Ireland in the 1970s was not exactly a metropolis, flush with opportunity. My cousin was a first year student nurse and my uncle was a psychiatric nurse and both of them had a major influence on my selection of nursing as a career. I started my career as a student psychiatric nurse at St Patrick's Hospital Dublin. St Patrick's was founded over 260 years ago by Jonathan Swift, of Gulliver’s Travels fame. It was a wonderful start to my career and I learned the fundamental principles of nursing in an institution with very high standards. I recognised the need to become a general nurse and among the reasons mentioned in the correspondence rejecting my application to Irish hospitals was because I was a male. So I decided to leave Ireland and my next move was to Epsom, Surrey to undertake general nurse training. Again I have very pleasant memories of Epsom Hospital, and my career really blossomed in England and the seeds of my future academic career were sown.

2. Why did you become an editor?

My interest in being an editor basically arises from ongoing writing, publication and refereeing of papers throughout my career. My experience of editing is in varied form including books and also with professional publications when I worked with the Irish Nursing Board. In association with a colleague Hugh McKenna from the University of Ulster we recognised the need for an Irish Nursing Journal to provide nurses North and South of Ireland with an opportunity to write and debate, and we founded and became joint editors of the All Ireland Journal of Nursing & Midwifery. Nursing Open now presents another opportunity for editing and as a new nursing journal it will be exciting to observe the growth of the journal.

3. What advice would you give to aspiring editors?

It’s an opportunity to be at the cutting edge of nursing literature. I think a track record of publication including acceptances and rejections of papers is a humbling and important learning experiencing in refining the skills required for an editorial role.

4. What are the main challenges for nursing in the next decade?
The world financial recession and the resulting constraints on healthcare budgets have meant that nursing has been a soft target for cutbacks in an unplanned pattern. We are not clear about the impact of such rapid and unplanned changes in nursing and it presents a great danger to recent nursing developments related the scope of nursing practice and in particular developing clinical career pathways in areas of autonomous and specialist practice.

5. Who do you recommend to follow on Twitter?

Social media has become an obsession in some people’s lives with many people subscribing to all forms of transmission and the personal messages are endless. I keenly follow organisational and societies' Twitter accounts, and I also find the accounts of political figures interesting. At RCSI Bahrain we have just set up a twitter account for our Chapter of Sigma Theata Tau: @ruffaidasociety.

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Meet the Editors: Allison Williams

Five Things About Allison

1. Why did you become a nurse?

Like Roger, I started out as a nurse associate. I worked in a midwifery unit in my school holidays where my mother was a midwife. I hadn’t the faintest idea about babies and kept pretty much to myself. However, this experience has stayed with me and may have lit the lamp for my nursing career. I qualified as a registered nurse in a large country town in Victoria, Australia, three years later. My work now as Director of the Monash Nursing Academy is a long way from these humble but incredibly valuable beginnings.

2. Why did you become an editor?

Good question. I enjoy the scholarly aspect of nursing having spent a good deal of my life working in the clinical environment. I enjoy reading about nursing and I like writing even though it takes me a lot of time to create a paper I am satisfied with.

3. What advice would you give to aspiring editors?

If you are offered the opportunity, take it! You need to be prepared to spend quality time on editorial work. Good time management skills are essential.

4. What are the main challenges for nursing in the next decade?
  • Maintaining quality of care for people who require long term care. 
  • Having a say in health policy affecting patient care. For example, multinational companies eager to grab a chunk of the healthcare market without considering the consumer’s point of view or the value of the money spent.

5. Who do you recommend to follow on Twitter?

I am a new tweeter- yet to be decided.