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A blog with more than just articles

Introducing changes to our service section

14.09.2020

A blog like ours primarily lives off interesting articles. Ideally, our posts offer new perspectives or critiques, cover current developments or excavate neglected discourses. Behind these articles stand knowledgeable and inspiring authors – early career scholars as well as renowned academics, with a broad range of expertise, from a variety of institutions, from the Global North and South.

Academic life before, in between, and after writing and reading

What is sometimes forgotten when reading these articles is that our authors and readers do not just write and read. At its best, academia is not about publishing as much as possible and as quickly as possible, but also about community. Such a community develops and flourishes before, in between, and after the oftentimes lonely process of writing and reading. It can occur when starting a captivating conversation over a cup of coffee during a conference break, when emailing back and forth over a journal submission, or when meeting inspiring new colleagues at a new job. A community of peers is thus not just a necessary but burdensome byproduct of academia. Rather, it lies at its very center. This includes established processes of peer-review but also less visible aspects of feedback as well as psychological, political, institutional, and financial support.

The service section on our blog

Völkerrechtsblog has devoted its service section to this kind of ‘background noise’ that makes scholarship into something palpable and livable. Since the blog’s inception in 2014, we have been posting upcoming events such as conferences or summer schools, calls for paper, or job vacancies. Our statistics as well as the feedback we receive show us that our readers appreciate this service.

But how are these updates collected? Behind the service-section of our blog stands a tireless team of ten volunteers that has been combing through websites and social media to collect interesting and relevant postings. As we have seen our blog grow and diversify over the last years, we also adjusted our work by expanding into countries beyond Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, and into the English speaking or writing academic world. We also felt that the platforms of academic exchange are changing, which not just our blog itself but also discourses on e.g. Twitter are emblematic of. For this reason, relevant postings which we found on Twitter have also been included in our updates. And if you have not come across it yet, you might want to follow the blog’s own twitter account @Voe_Blog.

Future changes

This month brings something new. The more obvious news is the new design of our website, which we hope you enjoy as much as we do. For the service-section, the news is that we would like to encourage you to submit your calls for applications, papers, and jobs from now on exclusively via email (newsletter@voelkerrechtsblog.org). With the growth and diversity the blog has luckily experienced, the search we have been conducting ourselves has become selective and not representative of the broad diversity our readers stand for. What stays the same are the categories of submissions we accept (1. calls for papers; 2. announcements for conferences, workshops or summer/winter schools; and 3. job vacancies) as well as the service we provide. Just like in the past, we upload your submissions regularly and for free on our blog and include them in our monthly newsletter which is sent to the German Society of International Law. And just like before, you can submit to us any updates related to the various subfields of international law and international legal thought in English, French or German – no matter where in the world you are located.

We hope that through these updates Völkerrechtsblog can not only help you prosper academically and professionally, but also personally by helping to build a community to thrive in. After all, academia exists of more than just writing and reading articles. And so does our blog.

Autor/in
Thomas Dollmaier

Thomas Dollmaier is a PhD candidate at Berlin’s Humboldt University and editor at Völkerrechtsblog.

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