The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on perceived publication pressure among academic researchers in Canada Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • The phenomenon of “publish-or-perish” in academia, spurred on by limited funding and academic positions, has led to increased competition and pressure on academics to publish. Publication pressure has been linked with multiple negative outcomes, including increased academic misconduct and researcher burnout. COVID-19 has disrupted research worldwide, leading to lost research time and increased anxiety amongst researchers. The objective of this study was to examine how COVID-19 has impacted perceived publication pressure amongst academic researchers in Canada. We used the revised Publication Pressure Questionnaire, in addition to Likert-type questions to discern respondents’ beliefs and concerns about the impact of COVID-19 on academic publishing. We found that publication pressure increased across academic researchers in Canada following the pandemic, with respondents reporting increased stress, increased pessimism, and decreased access to support related to publishing. Doctoral students reported the highest levels of stress and pessimism, while principal investigators had the most access to publication support. There were no significant differences in publication pressure reported between different research disciplines. Women and non-binary or genderfluid respondents reported higher stress and pessimism than men. We also identified differences in perceived publication pressure based on respondents’ publication frequency and other demographic factors, including disability and citizenship status. Overall, we document a snapshot of perceived publication pressure in Canada across researchers of different academic career stages and disciplines. This information can be used to guide the creation of researcher supports, as well as identify groups of researchers who may benefit from targeted resources.

publication date

  • January 2022