A basic goal of the Florida Sea Grant College Program (FSG) is to place information produced by research, education and extension activities into the hands of those who use Florida’s coastal and marine resources. This is achieved in several ways using different types of published material, both traditional and electronic. The communications staff is responsible for all FSG information services and is the primary point of contact for assistance in these areas.
This guide is intended to advise Sea Grant-sponsored faculty and others involved in FSG of the policies, procedures, and opportunities available for publication and dissemination of information derived from their work. It explains the procedures for preparation of manuscripts to be published or materials to be produced through FSG.
Program Publications and Productions
FSG publications are designed to reach specific audiences. It is often a good communication strategy to use the same information in several types of publications. For example, results of one research project might be published for a more scientific audience in a Sea Grant Report or a Technical Paper. At the same time, brief, pertinent extracts from these publications might be appropriate for publication as a Sea Grant Extension Bulletin or Fact Sheet for a lay audience.
Additionally, authors are encouraged to publish their findings in scientific journals. Florida Sea Grant recommends that graduate students publish their results beyond the thesis and dissertation level.
The production of videos is an option if the information has a broad enough appeal to the general audience. Contact the communications staff to discuss your needs and interests.
Types of Publications
FSG Technical Papers are technical in nature, often intended for experts in the subject area, students, resource managers, and the like, rather than for general distribution. While the subject matter may be suited to publication in a professional journal, a Technical Paper does not have a journal article’s length constraint. This medium is intended for rapid dissemination and often the contents may receive only a cursory internal Sea Grant staff editing. The author(s) is responsible for the scientific accuracy of the document.
Sea Grant Reports
Sea Grant Reports are peer-reviewed and revised by the author(s). They contain semi-technical or technical information, and have academic distinction. The information is an interpretation, application or summary of research results as they pertain to specific marine or coastal problems. Sea Grant Reports are intended for broader distribution, often in support of program activities, and for dissemination to specific distribution lists. Reports are not designed or intended to be a substitute for professional journal articles.
Sea Grant Extension Bulletins
Bulletins are non-technical or semi-technical publications intended for a lay audience or a specific user group. Bulletins may provide information, interpretation, or instruction.
Sea Grant Extension Fact Sheets
Fact Sheets are shorter and less detailed with information condensed for specific user groups. Fact Sheets may also provide a means of publishing, for lay audiences, pertinent portions of much longer Sea Grant Reports.
Florida Sea Grant publications are sometimes prepared expressly for the Florida Sea Grant website. Preparation and formatting should be discussed with communications staff in advance.
Submission of Manuscripts for Review
When planning a publication, the author should contact the Associate Director, FSG, or in the case of Sea Grant extension faculty, the FSG Assistant Director for Extension, to explore its feasibility.
After receiving tentative approval to proceed, the author needs to prepare the manuscript. Manuscripts for Sea Grant Reports, Extension Bulletins and Fact Sheets are subject to peer review and the author may be asked to modify the manuscript in response to comments. In addition, the communications staff will edit the document and assign it an appropriate number. Technical Papers are not peer reviewed. Some academic departments have their own review process which authors are encouraged to use. This process contributes to the quality control of the work, and in some cases might eliminate the need for further Sea Grant review. For university faculty and for Sea Grant extension faculty, there is usually a built-in review process expected by the department or unit, or in some cases, county administration. It is the author’s responsibility to ensure that this process is followed and that their manuscript is cleared for publication through the appropriate channels (e.g., dean, department chair, department publications review committee).
Regardless of any review process external to FSG Communications, all submissions will be reviewed by Sea Grant communications for grammar and writing merit, and through the design and production process.
Preparation of Sea Grant Reports, Technical Papers, Extension Bulletins, and Extension Fact Sheets
The author is responsible for providing the manuscript and/or originals of illustrations (including graphs, charts, tables, drawings, and photographs. Cover design suggestions are welcome. The author is also expected to provide a concise summary of the contents of the publication or production at the time the manuscript or production materials are submitted. FSG is required to submit abstracts to the National Sea Grant Depository. For Sea Grant purposes, abstracts or executive summaries between 150 and 250 words are sufficient.
The communications staff will include the Florida Sea Grant logo in the publication or production, generally on the front or back cover, or inside the front or back cover, along with the mandatory disclaimer text provided at this link. The FSG logo is used in conjunction with the NOAA logo, and in conjunction with other logos, depending on the nature of the work, collaborators and sources of support of the work. These include, as appropriate, affiliates such as the University of Florida, or other collaborating university or institution, or the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS), .If there are specific logo requirements for a publication, it is the author’s responsibility to secure a high resolution version of the graphic.
FSG Communications provides limited funding to print or produce minimal quantities of approved FSG productions. Additional costs should be included as part of the research project grant.
Publications are distributed by Sea Grant unless prior arrangements are made. Publications are distributed in one of three ways: free of charge on a single copy basis, in bulk quantities, and as “For Sale” publications. The selling price for publications is determined by the actual cost of production, printing and distribution, and in some cases, marketing.
Mandatory distribution of new publications includes the National Sea Grant Office and The National Sea Grant Library. Certain productions and publications are also requested by the NOAA Central Library.
Journal Articles, Theses and Dissertations
Publication of results of Sea Grant sponsored research in professional journals is strongly encouraged. When a manuscript with appropriate Sea Grant sponsored credit is accepted by a journal, the author should notify the FSG associate director of research. Florida Sea Grant requires two copies of reprints for mandatory distribution; the cost of reprints is borne by the author(s).
Sponsorship Credit: Articles resulting all or in part from Sea Grant funding should acknowledge all sources of support. The statement must appear in the published work acknowledging the project as part of the Florida Sea Grant College Program with support from the U.S. Department of Commerce, NOAA, and the Office of Sea Grant. The grant number should also be cited. The statement is to be used solely or in combination with any other acknowledgement statement, such as those required by a host university or other institutional collaborator.
Theses and Dissertations
A copy of a final student document on a Sea Grant sponsored project is filed in the Sea Grant office only if it represents the final report on that project; otherwise it is filed in the major department concerned. However, the abstract must be submitted to Florida Sea Grant. Abstracts of all pertinent theses and dissertations are copied and distributed to a selected audience.
Other Opportunities for Presenting Research Results
News releases are prepared by the FSG communications staff from information received through researchers and other sources available to FSG. Participants in the program having information suitable for distribution to the media are encouraged to contact the communications staff. News releases, written or video, are distributed to news media within Florida as well as to certain national news media, usually by making video clips available through a satellite system. Florida Sea Grant has access to a clipping service provided through the University of Florida, and can track the potential readership or viewer exposure of its news releases.
When issuing a news release independent of FSG communications, or when being interviewed by the press, researchers and Sea Grant extension faculty are expected to indicate that the research is funded by or affiliated with the Florida Sea Grant College Program, as appropriate. Please provide a copy of each printed news release or video clip to the FSG communication staff.
Researchers and Sea Grant extension faculty are encouraged to contact the communications staff to discuss the possibility of such an article when they have results or activities underway that are suitable for this type outlet — a general distribution type magazine as opposed to a professional journal. FSG staff are prepared to write, and submit for publication, articles concerning Sea Grant sponsored research or extension programs that warrant such exposure.
Conferences, Workshops and Seminars
The communications staff is available to assist in preparing, publishing and distributing conference announcements and program agendas for workshops, conferences, or seminars being planned in connection with a research project. Also, if appropriate, a FSG display unit can be prepared for use at the meetings, with relevant publications that are available.
While not a priority area for FSG, production of conference or workshop proceedings is considered on a case-by-case basis, whenever Sea Grant research and researcher, or extension faculty involvement is substantial.
Occasionally the scope of information generated from the research is applicable for a broad target audience, e.g., how to prepare your boat to avoid lightning damage. Producing a video may be an appropriate method for distributing this type of information. Sea Grant can provide assistance in the form of script writing, technical expertise and distribution. Funds for producing a video must come from another source. Contact the communications director for more information.
Florida Sea Grant maintains a the www.FlSeaGrant.org website. Links to other pages are listed on subject related pages. If a homepage is created using information generated from Sea Grant sponsored research, please e-mail the URL (Web address) to email@example.com. In most cases a reciprocal link to the FSG Website can be established.
For More Information
Sherry Larkin, Interim Director
Charles Sidman, Associate Director
Florida Sea Grant College Program
University of Florida
P O Box 110400
Gainesville, FL 32611-0400
Phone – 352/392-5870
Fax – 352/392-5113