Frost and Taylor 2008 Talk About Their Seminar Paper

Excerpt from Seminar Paper :

Frost and Taylor (2008) talk about their experiences with reviewing. They noted how they first started out with thorough reviews but then irked at the amount of time that reviewing took; they abbreviated it more and more.

In their second experience of reviewing, they mention the reviews that they received about their own work. How these varied, and how they chaffed at having to tailor their work, whether unjustly or not, to meet the comments of their reviewers. They then transferred this experience to their own review work of marking the works of others becoming more empathic in their grading. They were positive in their tone and longer in order to avert rude and hurtful responses. But these also weren't helpful since the reviews became ineffective. They also became one again longer. So once again, the authors shortened their review and became more time- rather than person-oriented.

Writing to authors, Frost and Taylor say how reviews can be onerous since the reviewer is always trying to meet deadlines. One way to succeed is to remain focused. A few heuristics -- guidelines to the author - may be in order. The reviewer need not perambulate nor address every fault. This also leads to collegiality which entails that larger problems are addressed; more insignificant ones ignored on the premise that they will likely be discovered later.

Proffering a review on Frost and Taylor's essay, my own impression is that this is a well-written piece but left me feeling quite confused. Questions I had included: what was the objective of their writing this piece? It seemed unclear. Was it to detail what a good review should be, as seemed the intent of the first section? If so, this was not accomplished. Or barely. Largely, the authors seemed to perambulate on their own experience and to sidetrack. The article too would have benefitted from delineating the characteristics of these reviews. Somewhere towards the end, I realized that the authors may have had journal articles in mind but nowhere was this stated explicitly. Review embraces a wide spectrum of material; each of which, undoubtedly, has particular rules. I was, therefore, unsure of audience.

The article would have profited form an introduction summing and objectifying the whole. Sections should have clarified authors' intentions, and a conclusion would have been appropriate, summing up the whole.

All of this was missing.

The tone -- verbious at times, was however interesting.

It was instructive in parts.

2. Leblebici has her own experiences on reviewing. She describes them in neat sections following a day's typical role as reviewer. She describes the review process as she lets the reader look over her shoulder through his review.

If she misses meat in the first section, she knows that the essay is lacking. Empirical essays, too, she points out, have different requirements than theoretical ones, and both do not need to be responded with in a lengthy way. Addressing the core points is sufficient. Sometimes, she shows, the empirical aspects of the essay may be fine; calculations and process clear and accurate. The theoretical part, however, needs work on sine it may be dense (for instance). She then states, how the second rereading of the manuscript is different than the first in that a different perspective is taken.

Relevance and rigor are the usual two yardsticks employed for review, but Leblebici uses three criteria:

External consistency -- is the paper consistent with existent knowledge

Internal consistency -- does manuscript contain contradictions

Is the paper exciting and worth reading

Leblebici has also discovered that working along with a rough template helps her review.

I found Leblebici's essay interesting and informative. Written as a narrative, I was able to vicariously look over her shoulder and see her strategies and I found them generous and instructive. Leblebici was also honest in, for instance, mentioning that inevitably her review would be subjective. As, for instance, in determining whether or not work was readable and exciting. The clearly labeled sections allowed me to absorb the content and understand what I was reading whilst the narrative style held my attention.

Leblebici's review in short is instructive not only to reviewers but to writers / authors too. To reviewers, she provides nuggets of information such as to have a rough template. To the author, she provides recommendations for the essay's acceptance. Each student wants his or he article to be accepted by the editorial board. They will welcome such an essay.

3. Submission #14559

The research investigates how performance information (PI) is used within the public sector and examines the situation where various approaches to PI are used simultaneously within the same organization. Although recent research has called for increasing use of PI, it has also shown that PI is ambiguous and can be used in different ways. Intent of this paper, therefore, is to also understand the way that PI is used not just its purpose.

The authors conducted this research via qualitative research study in public sectors in Britain. There were pilot interviews and two in depth studies in a local authority and a fire authority. Results showed two local uses of PI as being culturally driven and distinct. Senior employees used PI for improving organizational performance, whilst junior employees used PI for external reporting and ensuring compliance. Construct of cross-understanding was used to explain difference, limited use of PI for improvising organizational efficacy, a nd scarce impact of leadership on prompting this use of PI. Authors concluded that low levels of PI may constrain organization from delivering its promise even when use of PI is high.

The authors had a valid point and seemed to point out a point of research that needed investigating and that had been hitherto ignored. Their use of qualitative research was appropriate in the situation: PI is an abstract, evaluative element and can best be investigated in the qualitative manner.

On the other hand, their investigation was limited to two places and biased by the specific qualities of those places. The sample was, therefore, too small to make general conclusions. The research too was subjective in that ultimately it was the authors who interpreted response and asked the questions. Both interviewer and interviewee bias may have existed as well as external factors that may have corroded internal reliability of research.

It was positive that the authors chose two completely distinct public sectors. Conditions here, however, were unequally matched. Numerous other elements may have contributed to results. It needs a quantitative research to screen these.

Finally, interviews have their own numerous problems that include way that responders understand and respond to items.

4. The authors in Submission ID: 11814 point out that many researchers maintain that we are in the midst of a transition from New Public Management (NPM) to a more governance oriented and network centric conception of government reform which is alternately referred to as New Public Governance (NPG) or Network Governance (NG). Other observers, however, take a more critical view, and see such a transition as a 'cover' for essentially continuing the managerialist and inequitable trajectory of NPM.

The authors in this paper adopt Davies' Gramscian analysis of Network Governance's hegemonic character in reading the Civil Service Reform Plan put forward by the UK government in response to the global financial crisis in order to assess how policy might draw on and seek to implement doctrinal elements of NPM or NG. They find that the plan reasserts governementalizing NPM principles and only selectively asserts connectionist NG principles. It is this selectivity that enables the plan to negotiate the contradictions inherent in drawing on opposed principles. In reasserting and asserting contradictory principles, the plan both draws on and deepens the managerialist orthodoxies that were mobilized to support NPM. The authors argue whether to read this as an expression of domination through hegemony or the absence of available policy alternatives, and question what positions become available for the practice of critique from within and outside the state.

Although the abstract sounds confusing, the authors make sense of a potentially cloudy topic by leading the reader by the hand through the history and definitions as well as a context and background of the issue. The subsections are clearly labeled, and authors also present both sides of the topic refraining from showing their agenda to any one particular view.

The sources that they quote are current and scholarly as well s generous. This adds to the scholarly impact of their article and makes it more convincing and reliable. We also know that the article is scholarly due to the fact that it was published in a reputable journal.

Their article proceeds in logical manner, point after deductive point, each clearly supported by relevant source and all possible issues mentioned. Keeping in mind the reader's possible ignorance on certain matters, the authors address these too. It is clear that the article is addressed for the scholar of this particular subject; nonetheless it interests the layman too. They also maintain their clarity by launching some sections…

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