Professional Development Panels (Lisbon 2019)
By Amanda Friesen (IUPUI) and Angel Saavedra Cisneros (SNC)
Early career scholars access guidance, information and advice from a variety of sources – mentors, peers, alumni, academic Twitter, and so on. One of the main objectives of ISPP’s Early Career Committee is to be another source of mentorship and engagement about professional development topics. As co-leaders in the ECC-Professional Development committee, we decided from the outset that we wanted to increase the diversity of scholars represented on our roundtables in Lisbon 2019 and Berlin 2020.
We all look up to mentors and prominent scholars in our field(s) whose work we have read and presence we seek – hoping to network with influential individuals for our career purposes but also with some hope we can glean tips for success. These senior scholars, particularly in political psychology, are often gracious enough to lend their time and effort to continue to provide early career scholars with ideas and suggestions as we move forward in our academic pursuits. But those people are also the people who win awards, have keynote speakerships and who play a prominent role in other parts of the conference. In addition, these individuals likely went on a very different job market than the one facing early career scholars today. So we decided to use a different approach to diversify the ECC panels during our tenure.
We focused on three types of diversity in recruiting our panelists: demographic/under-represented groups, type of institution, and country of origin/employment; while also trying to recruit younger, successful political psychologists to participate. Our efforts were driven by the understanding that young political psychologists who come from diverse backgrounds and institutions are able to provide insights that will differ from those provided by successful tenured professors who are significantly established within the discipline. This was not an easy task. We invited scholars from our networks, through Twitter, through other ECC members, through Women Also Know Stuff and People of Color Also Know Stuff. We made efforts for diverse voices for each panel. Because ISPP is often an “extra” conference for many people with already limited travel budgets, many of our colleagues expressed interest but could not attend or were choosing not to attend this year. After securing at least three panelists per roundtable, from diverse backgrounds and current situations, several folks had to bow out for various reasons. In the end, we filled in ourselves or recruited more people from our networks who we knew were attending. It’s not perfect; but we also wish to approach these roundtables as conversations rather than several sages on the stage. Our hope is through these conversations, we also find out what early career scholars want to know, who they wish to hear from and how we can get those individuals to Berlin in 2020.
We proposed several sessions to best allow the speakers to share their unique perspectives and suggestions to the increasingly diverse group of early career scholars. We eventually were able to secure three panel sessions, with three distinct focuses: publishing, sharing research, and building a scholarly reputation. The panels are:
- From Peer Review to Publicity: Best Practices for Building a Scholarly Reputation. (Saturday at 11:50) With Amanda Friesen and Lasse Lautsen (Aarhus University)
- Developing a Research Elevator Pitch. (Sunday 8:30) With Héctor Carvacho (Universidad Católica de Chile), Melinda Jackson (San José State University), and Chris Sibley (University of Auckland)
- The Dissertation is Done, Now What? Publishing Post-Ph.D. (Sunday 11:50) With Mary-Kate Lizotte (Augusta University), Michael Gruszczynski (Indiana University - Bloomington), and Jaime Settle (William and Mary).
Each of these will provide ISPP attendees with a distinct set of insights that we believe will enrich our experience beyond the collegiate academic learning we all have come to benefit from at ISPP. As many of us know, when more people are present, we have the opportunity to listen to, consider, and share distinct points of view, which leads us to expand our thinking about the issues that matter to us as we seek to become successful and prominent scholars at our institutions in our field. Our goal was to provide ample room for the speakers to craft their intervention and to provide a very unrestricted environment for speakers and attendees to have a rewarding session.
We hope to see you at these events and we also want to welcome ISPP members to propose young scholars for the Berlin 2020 conference.
Amanda Friesen (IUPUI) and Angel Saavedra Cisneros (SNC)