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Letters This academic journal does like innovative work

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The Architects' Journal welcomes your letters, which should preferably be typed double-spaced. Please address them to the editor at 151 Rosebery Avenue, London EC1R 4GB, fax them on 0171 505 6701, or e-mail them to Victorian@construct.emap.co.uk to arrive

Katherine Shonfield states (AJ 12/19.7.99) that 'established academics run refereed journals. They are biased against innovations challenging the received wisdom.' Perhaps, as one of those 'established academics', I may be allowed to reply.

The journal arq (Architectural Research Quarterly), which I edit with Tom Fisher, another former professional editor and an 'established academic' at the University of Minnesota, welcomes papers from both academics and practitioners. Our main aim is to link practice and research.

Seventy-eight papers have been published so far on every aspect of architectural endeavour. Because we are a subscription magazine and the majority of our readers are practitioners, we are selective about what we publish: articles must be a contribution to knowledge, well written and likely to hold the interest of a practitioner. We also try to get a balance of subject matter in each issue.

Our September issue will include two articles on innovation design: one on an urban extension to Berlin by Florian Beigel and unl's architecture research unit, and the other on the developing architectural position of a young practice, Sergison Bates. Its practitioner-authors submitted excellent drafts which left little doubt that their work met our criteria and should be submitted forrefereeing.

We welcome submissions of this kind and are more than pleased to edit them to bring them up to publication standard - no mean effort with papers which are 4000 to 6000 words long and include 30 to 40 illustrations! Incidentally, the next issue also includes an article on a studio-based research project at an architecture school, another based on an MPhil student's research - and much else.

There is a wonderful opportunity for academics to earn research assessment credit by acting as intermediaries between practice and publication. Among the examples of this was an academic practitioner's account of the development of the timber rain-screen cladding on David Chipperfield's Rowing Museum at Henley; another was a critique of the work of Claus and Kaan. Academics considering a paper ofthis kind should contact me (c/o University of Cambridge, Department of Architecture; or feel free to send email to me at pc207@hermes.cam.ac.uk). I can also suggest subjects and contacts. The only qualification is an understanding of the subject matter and the ability to write well.

Peter Carolin, arq, Department of Architecture, Universityof Cambridge

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