Collaboration to Publication in Public History

Public History Interns Series

Author: Isabeau Wighton, student at Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia, studying ancient history and archaeology.

There are many organisations dedicated to Public History around the world. If you are a Public History student or early professional, you will find some resources to support you in your journey throughout this blog post.

For those of us who have studied in various fields, the next step or direction isn’t always clear: should we continue to develop our learning and experience through a career or academic journey? Networking, collaborations, and publications are crucial in helping us continue to grow and develop our skills, and further our profession. 

Networking is not only beneficial to your career, but can create valuable and meaningful connections, and even life-long friendships.

It does not necessarily have to involve formal interactions: networking can come in the form of a chat over coffee, through emails, or by bouncing ideas off one another. 

Networking and building connections to those in similar fields can lead to job opportunities, new insights, ideas and information, access to resources, and new relationships that can give you a competitive professional edge or open doors to opportunities you didn’t have before.

It may also boost your confidence when it comes to making connections with professionals, promoting the exchange of ideas and your visibility in the community. 

 A few ways to engage with others are by:

  • Attending academic conferences and events where you can interact with other professionals face to face.
  • Utilise social media networking to connect with experts from all over the world.
  • If you are still in university, you can approach professors and faculties for potential connections to other professionals or organisations.  

Looking to network with fellow public historians? Here are some organizations and groups to connect with:

Like networking, collaboration often brings together individuals working in similar subjects of interest and fields of study. Depending on your project, you may also work with professionals outside your field, to gain a specialised perspective for the purposes of your studies and with research, writing, and publication. 

These types of collaborations will expand your knowledge, resources and networks, and offer new perspectives to weave into your own work knowledge and ethic. It can be helpful to work with others with complementary skills to your own and learn from each other.

Peers and professors at your institution are excellent advisors. They might also be able to connect you to other experts in the field. Furthermore, collaborating with experts in the industry is a great way to gain a deeper understanding and context behind a subject. 

Ways to encourage collaboration could be:

  • You could use the collective knowledge and resources at your disposal to your advantage, i.e. university or work.
  • YouTube can be a useful platform to reach wider audiences. It is an easy medium to collaborate with others on a project, in person or remotely.

Whether you have graduated or are still completing your degree, you can seek to publish your work. Publishing can open you up to new experiences, career growth, enhance your writing and proposing skills, and may even help to open up further opportunities. The constructive feedback or criticism of your work is also useful for future research and writing.

Participating in academic research with your peers, with the aim of publication, is a positive way of contributing to your field, making an impact and preserving your research and discoveries, putting them out into the world for others to discover and perhaps build on.

It can increase your exposure to other scholars and companies, which in turn may lead to more opportunities, connections, and potential funding for further publication opportunities. 

Keeping in mind that, as public historians, we have the general public in mind as our audience, we may need to think bigger than the traditional academic modes of delivery.

Some options of publication you can utilise to engage with the public can be: 

  • Approach organisations, journals and publishers to further your understanding of how the industry works and to secure potential work. 
  • Self-publishing has never been easier than with the advent of sites such as YouTube, TikTok, or podcast platforms; utilise social media to your advantage to capture the interest of the public.

Here are some Public History focused conferences and publications to check out:

By actively engaging in networking, collaboration, and publication, you can continue to enhance your career and personal growth, along with further developing your academic impact on the world.

Isabeau Wighton is a student at Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia, studying ancient history and archaeology. They are currently working with the International Federation for Public History on the organizing committee towards the running of the 2024 annual Public History Summer School.

Cite this blog post
Bridging Editor (2024, May 24). Collaboration to Publication in Public History. IFPH-FIHP. Retrieved June 23, 2024, from

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