Call for Pitches: “Being open to change”

Share your stories about your experiences of open science.
Inside eLife
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The deadline for this Call for Pitches has now passed.

Our active Calls for Pitches can be viewed here.


In recent decades, open science practices have started to shift the way people conceive, conduct and publish research. From GitHub to bioRxiv, from PREreview to Plan S, new tools and initiatives are transforming practice as they’re being adopted by people across the research community.

Sparks of Change is an eLife column about moments that exemplify how research culture is changing. For an upcoming column, we are looking for personal stories that centre around a decision to be more open in research, including what prompted that decision and the changes it brought about for you, your research or your community.

Perhaps you are someone who benefitted from open data and code and then wanted to return the favour. Or maybe you persuaded your co-authors to post a preprint, and ended up introducing them to a new way of publishing.

You may have experimented with open hardware, found a sense of belonging as part of an open science community, or worked behind the scenes to foster open practices at your institution.

Whatever the change, and whether you have just experimented with open research practices or embraced them fully, if you have an interesting story about being more open in research, we want to hear from you.

Submissions will be accepted until the end of Sunday, August 15, 2021.

What we’re looking for

We’re looking for pitches of up to 250 words that will help us understand the story you want to share. The final articles will be short (about 800 words) first-person narratives that get readers immersed in an event that ignited change in the author’s life or those around them. This column is not for essays, opinion pieces or research publications (but these may be published as other article types in eLife). Please note that we cannot accept content that has been published elsewhere, or which overlaps greatly with already published articles. Guidelines are available here.

Unsure about pitching to us?

Sparks of Change is for anyone and everyone with an interesting story to tell and the willingness to tell it, regardless of job title or seniority. We are especially interested in featuring stories from individuals from communities that are underrepresented in science and medicine. One of our dedicated editors will work closely with each selected author to shape their final piece and allow the story to shine through. You do not need to have been published previously to be considered, and you do not have to wait for your idea to be perfect before getting in touch.


We welcome comments, questions and feedback. Please annotate publicly on the article or contact us at

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