METM18 presentation 

Do freelance editors for non-native-English academic and scientific researchers seek acknowledgement? Results of an online survey

Joy Burrough-Boenisch, Renkum, Netherlands 

An implicit assumption underlying the theme for this year’s MET conference is that acknowledging language assistance is important. But is it? Do freelance editors think it’s important to be acknowledged for the language assistance they give, and if so, how do they go about securing due acknowledgement? If they don’t seek due acknowledgement, why don’t they? These questions are especially interesting to pose to language professionals who assist scholars and scientists to produce publishable texts, as such authors need to achieve and maintain a respected name for themselves in their discourse community via well-written publications published in good journals. In spring 2018 I will therefore conduct a short online survey of MET members (and, hopefully, also of members of SENSE and NEaT), specifically targeting freelance editors working for non-native-English academic and scientific researchers. In this presentation I will present the results and discuss their implications. Will there be differences relating to the country in which the editor is based, or in whether the editor works mainly for authors in the humanities, or in science, or biomedicine? Will it turn out that many editors are content simply to be paid adequately and to keep a low profile? Insights into these and the other issues covered in the survey will help freelancers and their professional organizations adopt a position or strategy regarding acknowledgement for language assistance.

About the presenter

Netherlands-based British-born Joy Burrough-Boenisch edits and translates (from Dutch to English) for scientists and academics, teaches scientific English, and trains language professionals. She is a founder and honorary member of SENSE (the society of English-language professionals in the Netherlands) and a qualified member of the Institute of Translation and Interpreting. Her doctorate is in applied linguistics. She has authored scholarly and professional publications on editing non-native English and given workshops for language professionals in various European countries, including for the European Commission. She is a seasoned conference speaker, particularly for MET.