While a well-known mathematics professor is sailing around the world, and in the newspaper columns, the Nordic Media Days are organized these days in Bergen. Among other things, people’s media habits have been investigated through the annual Media survey. From this it appears that the public’s trust in media has been decreasing lately. At the same time, cellulose-based newspapers struggle with their income, when the young generation with more digital media habits enters adulthood.
It is a while since BIO-info came out on paper. The last years our annual newsletter has been distributed as a pdf link. Starting this winter we have moved to a blog based edition, making it much simpler for us to edit stories and publish useful information for BIO employees and others who want to be informed about what is going on. In this way we also avoid spamming everyone with e-mails every time important things that we need to inform about appear. At the same time, two energetic PhD fellows contribute with editing, and thereby obtain both media training and useful acitvity in their compulsory work hours.
We have received positive feed-back on this transition. I am still a bit concerned that the new format doesn’t reach out as well as before. Some people note that the blog format doesn’t give the same oversight as the linear pdf format. It takes some clicking to get into the different topics, and clicking may lead to loosing the thread and not finding your way back to where you started. We also experience that information isn’t received as well as it used to do.
When the new BIO-info now starts to settle, it may be time for our own little survey of media habits. Thus we can find out what we can do better to make sure that everyone gets the information that can be found in BIO-info’s boxes and columns. Anyone with ideas or suggestions are welcome to send them to the editorial office.
A scientific journal in biology that has been digital since its incetion, and which over just a couple of years has established itself as a well recognized and respected journal, is eLife. Even though eLife itself is critical to the of an impact factor as a measure of scientific quality, the journal has in a short time approached an IF of 10. eLife is still at level 1 in the Norwegian system, but this is deemd to change now that Norwegian scientists start to discover the journal. The last in this regard is Arild Folkvord, who together with colleagues from among other places Uppsala, has mapped the herring genome and its importance for ecological adaptations. Congratulations to Arild!
Referring to the afore-mentioned mathematics professor, we are obviously many who were surprised to the way the University leadership presented a sailing professor as a normal and wanted way to be employed. It mus be obvious that the normal situation we want is faculty members who are present at the department and the institution and contribute to the scientific environment through research, discussions and smalltalk, supervision, outreach and teaching. And then of course we expect our staff to travel and visit other scientific environments, participate at conferences and contribute with guest lectures and courses. The work efforts of a professor is counted in many more ways than the number of articles published alone.
Happy 17. May!