Insights for Readers, Writers and Publishers
Chapter 7: Philip Campbell, Nature
← 90 | 91 → Chapter 7
Editor-in-chief, NatureInterview: Thursday, July 26, 2012Kings Cross, London
Philip Campbell, at the time of writing, heads the editorial operations of one of the world’s oldest scientific journals. He joined Nature in 1979, following doctoral and postdoctoral research in upper atmospheric physics at the University of Leicester. After running publications for the Institute of Physics, he returned to the journal in 1995 as editor-in-chief. A Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society and the Institute of Physics, Campbell advises public bodies on a range of issues relating to science and its impact on society.
The very high bar that Nature sets for publication makes it a good example of editing-as-selection. An account of the editing process at the journal also helps to illustrate the rhetorical role of editing in constructing arguments, and the difference this can make to the meaning of a text. Finally, it illuminates a long-standing debate within scientific publishing about how old and new publishing models can co-exist.
Nature was founded in 1869, a time of expansion and innovation in periodical publishing in the UK. The journal declares on its web pages: ‘Nature, above all, has been a survivor’ (Nature 2014).
Its iconic status also makes it a target. Nobel Prize winner Randy Schekman, for example, made a splash late in 2013 when he criticized ‘luxury journals’. He argued that existing open access alternatives such as Public Library of...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.