View of A Few Miles and an Ocean

A Few Miles and an Ocean

By Brynjulf Stige

Cheryl Dileo
Professor Cheryl Dileo, from 2011 one of three collaborating editors-in-chief in Voices.

With Volume 11(1) we can announce that there are now three collaborating editors-in-chief in Voices: Welcome to our new editor-in-chief; Professor Cheryl Dileo from Temple University in Philadelphia! She will contribute to the development of Voices as a research journal. Everybody who knows just a little bit of her work will know that she will strengthen our team and help us take the steps we want to take in order to continue to strengthen our journal.

Those of you who regularly revisit our previous editorials might be surprised to find that we now systematically work with the development of Voices as a research journal. In the editorial of Volume 6(3), Carolyn and I discussed how Voices could promote music therapy knowledge by not being a research journal. Things have changed, then, and perhaps we have changed too. When we established Voices in 2001 we had many hopes but probably did not really understand the full potential of what we were initiating. We did of course understand that Internet was a powerful medium and that this website would afford wonderful opportunities for publication and communication, with free access and with possibilities for exploring the use of multimedia. What we did not fully understand at that point was how significant Open Access publication was going to become in the development of contemporary disciplines and professions. Well – now we know. We also know that music therapy has changed and that there are now many more young researchers and research interested practitioners around the world that search for a venue for publication and communication.

To provide this space is one step that our journal is now ready to take. Our goal is to develop a new space for international peer-reviewed and Open Access publication in music therapy, in a way that

  1. increases the access to research material for music therapists around the world
  2. is sensitive to the fact that there are different cultures, practices, research traditions, and theory traditions of music therapy around the world
  3. is respectful to the needs of beginning researchers.

In short, this suggests that our review processes will be characterized by a combination of dialogue, critique, and support. The fact that we pay special attention to the needs of beginning researchers does not mean that we do not invite or hope for articles from well established researchers. We are confident that they will continue to use the journal, perhaps even more than before, since publication in an Open Access journal with readers all over the world is an effective way of communicating.

Our first meeting with three co-editors was held in Cleveland in November 2010, in connection to the American Music Therapy Association Conference. The Cleveland conference was a good one for Voices, with an interesting panel discussion and an active audience as one of the many positive experiences to remember. We now have several important ideas for development of Voices as a forum and journal in the years to come. The next years are going to be like a project period, with a focus on enhancing design and functionality, the use of audio and video material, the resource section, and the research section. The project will be summed up and evaluated at a meeting at the European Music Therapy Congress in Oslo, Norway, in August 2013.

There are a few miles and an ocean between Cleveland and Oslo. There will be a lot of work to do. The world-wide interest for Voices stimulates us to do it, and the many editors and collaborators around the world make it possible. But before we start working, let us enjoy the present issue of Voices. There are many interesting contributions in a range of genres to look at; essays, interviews, and perspectives on practice, a report, a theoretical article, and more. So far, the research articles have not taken over. And they will not. A space will be created for research articles, but Voices will continue to value and welcome contributions in a broad range of genres. There are many ways of knowing and consequently many ways of writing and communicating.

Bergen Open Access Publishing