What makes one author a good communicator and another a poor one? How to communicate scientific results through adequate and efficient scientific writing? How does the editorial process of a journal function, and why do scientific papers need to be refereed? All these questions, and many more, were the drivers for organizing in 2008 and in 2009 the three-day “Scientific Writing for Young Astronomers” courses for beginning PhD Students.
This book copes with the preparation of manuscripts, with communicating with editors and referees, and with avoiding common errors in scientific writing.
An entire chapter is devoted to communication with graphics, i.e., to various facets of visual communication by way of images, graphs, diagrams and tabular material. Special attention is given to the verity of graphical content, and to misrepresentations and errors in graphics and associated basic statistics. The central theme throughout this book is truthful communication of scientific results, involving the ethical principles of proper conduct in research and in scientific writing. Although the SWYA project was conceived for young astronomers, this Volume is far more than just a book for young astronomy students: it addresses many general issues related to technical, scientific, and social aspects of scientific writing, and is meant for a much wider audience. This includes graduate and seasoned students, as well as postdoctoral fellows and thesis supervisors in almost any discipline of the exact sciences. As the underlying theme is that verity and truth are the core business of science, it makes this book also of interest to scientometrists and science administrators.