Special Issue "Writing, Reading and Crafting Narratives in Scientific Publication"

A special issue of Publications (ISSN 2304-6775).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 July 2023) | Viewed by 2260

Special Issue Editors

Independent Researcher, New York, NY, USA
Interests: open science; science reading; science literacy; theory building for open science; data management; science as a human endowment; scientific process documentation
Institute of English Studies, University of Graz, Graz, Austria
Interests: sentence and discourse processing; L1 and L2 language acquisition; multilingualism; foreign language teaching; language rights and access to language

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

There is a persistent myth that storytelling has no place in scientific discourse, that its presence somehow delegitimizes science, reducing it to little more than clickbait—yet the fact remains that storytelling, or narrative, plays a central role in how humans organize information, and that includes scientific literature. In fact, the scientific research article, with its eponymous sections, introduction, methods, results, and discussion, was intended specifically to guide the unfolding of the narrative of the events in a scientific process because it was understood as needed to increase comprehension. In other words, narrative structure in research papers is both inherent and intentional. However, this knowledge was lost as publication became the cornerstone of career advancement, thus reducing the narrative cohesion intended in the research article’s structure to a series of fill-in-the-blank passages. As a result, there is only limited research on the role that narrative, as a basic information structuring mechanism in human cognition, plays in scientific research. For this Special Issue, we argue that scientific papers are narratives, written from the perspectives of researchers, and that this has direct consequences on how research is interpreted. We also posit that in order to insert a cohesive narrative into a scientific article, we must first acknowledge the natural narrative of the scientific process. In other words, it is unnecessary to superimpose narrative on the science—the narrative is already there.

Acknowledging that science is a process with actors, in this case researchers, engaged in activities, in this case research, is key both for researchers to write clear and accessible scientific literature and for audiences to understand this literature.

The journal Publications is concerned with public access to and engagement with scientific research, and for the public to access and engage with scientific research, researchers need to know how to tell their stories, and the public needs to know how to read them. For this Special Issue, we therefore seek empirical, theoretical, or applied submissions on the following topics:

  • Narrative in the scientific process;
  • Narrative in scientific writing;
  • Narratives as scientific documentation;
  • Science literacy/science reading;
  • Reading science as process, not as facts;
  • Narratives in media reporting of science;
  • The role that researcher subjectivity plays in the crafting of scientific narratives;
  • The role that reader subjectivity plays in the comprehension of scientific narratives;
  • Evidence-based pedagogical methods to teach how to read scientific journal articles;
  • Narrative and open science;
  • Narrative and open access;
  • Non-western narrative in scientific discourse;
  • Bridging narratives between media and basic science;
  • How social narratives (racism, sexism) constrain the type of science that can be done
  • Other topics touching upon science and narrative.

We request that, prior to submitting a manuscript, interested authors initially submit a proposed title and an abstract of roughly 400–600 words summarizing their intended contribution. Please send it to the guest editors (sciencenarrative2022@gmail.com) or to the Publications editorial office (publications@mdpi.com). Abstracts will be reviewed by the guest editors for the purposes of ensuring proper fit within the scope of the Special Issue.

Full manuscripts will undergo single-blind peer-review.

Monica Gonzalez-Marquez
Dr. Anouschka Foltz
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Publications is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • narrative
  • scientific process
  • scientific writing
  • science literacy
  • media

Published Papers

There is no accepted submissions to this special issue at this moment.
Back to TopTop