Editors’ Column

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Emotion Researcher: Past, Present, Future

Carolyn Price & Eric A. Walle

July 2017 – We are excited to take over the editorship of Emotion Researcher. As we take on the associated responsibilities, we felt it important to reflect on the development of this publication, reaffirm those aspects that we feel are most central to its mission, and highlight some directions that we aim to move toward in the coming years.


Emotion Researcher was originally developed to serve as a newsletter for the International Society for Research on Emotion. The goal was to provide the ISRE membership with a shared source of information for items relating to the society and the broader field.

Early editors included Randolph Cornelius, Agneta Fischer, Kim Bard, and Nathan Consedine. More recently the publication was edited by Christine Harris, who recalls spending hours (sometimes 40+ in a given week) formatting each issue, the paper copy of which necessitated that the newsletter consist of a multiple of 4 pages due to the folding of the sheet!

Andrea Scarantino took over as Editor in 2013. Under his guidance over the past 4 years, Emotion Researcher has progressed from a regular newsletter to a permanent, expanding, online resource where anyone who is interested in emotion can access expert, cross-disciplinary discussions concerning fundamental aspects of emotion. It is noteworthy that the efforts put into developing Emotion Researcher by Editors was, and continues to be, completely pro bono and with little or no editorial assistance.


As we take over as Co-Editors of Emotion Researcher, we will work to ensure that the fundamental tenement of this publication continues in every sense of the word, namely accessibility.

First, we are a completely online and openly accessible publication. One does not need a membership or subscription to access the content; simply an interest in emotion. This allows people from around the world, regardless of class or status, to have access to cutting edge research in the field of emotion.

Second, there is an accessibility of ideas to individuals from disparate backgrounds and fields of study. This embodies the spirit of ISRE as an inclusive enterprise that brings together scientists, researchers working in the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities. The articles are written to be interpretable by experts and non-experts alike. This makes the articles useful for anyone interested in the topic of emotion, a topic that is inherently complex and can be studied from a wide variety of perspectives. Additionally, the articles are interpretable for individuals just getting into the field of emotion research or anyone seeking insights from a discipline outside of their own.

Finally, Emotion Researcher has a personal quality that makes the people in the field accessible. Academia can feel stifling and impersonal, particularly for younger researchers. The interviews and spotlight features of Emotion Researcher are one means for alleviating this issue. Whether it was sharing the recipe for Nico Frijda’s homemade mango soup or allowing us to see a young Jennifer Lerner’s “enthusiastic eating,” this publication makes the people “really real” for the reader. Whereas most academic publications seek to filter out and control the personal, “unscientific” aspects of the author, we will continue to share the person as much as the ideas.


In addition to continuing the aims mentioned above, we also have some new initiatives that we hope to bring to the Emotion Researcher.

First, we will strive to increase our visibility. This task will begin in earnest at the Biennial ISRE Meeting in St. Louis. As the outgoing Editor, Andrea will take part in the Meet the Editors Workshop on July 26th. This meeting will bring together the editors from the top outlets in the field of emotion and we are thrilled that Emotion Researcher will be included. We will also work with the incoming ISRE Board to ensure that interested members receive each issue.

Second, we will work to raise the reputation of Emotion Researcher. There are plenty – some might argue too many – journals already being published. Rather than making Emotion Researcher another addition to the pile, we hope to carve out a unique niche. Our existing online presence will help facilitate this goal, allowing researchers to access comprehensive and cross-disciplinary perspectives on fundamental topics in emotion, as well as providing flexibility to try out new ideas and features. Relatedly, you will notice that the distributed “print” version of Emotion Researcher will now have a more classic look and feel. Though a superficial change, we hope that this adds to the credibility of the articles and other feature pieces published in Emotion Researcher.

Third, we are considering allowing researchers to propose and submit feature articles to be published in Emotion Researcher. In doing so, our aim would be to keep such pieces distinct from what can found in other journals. Additionally, we will need to consider how best to review, edit, and manage such submissions given our limited time and resources. This idea is still being bounced around and we are open to any thoughts or ideas that ISRE members may have.

In the end, Emotion Researcher remains what the ISRE membership makes of it. The upcoming ISRE Meeting will provide an excellent opportunity for us to discuss how to maintain and promote Emotion Researcher as a useful tool and impactful outlet. We look forward to working with all of you to ensure that Emotion Researcher accomplishes these goals.

Sincerely yours,

Carolyn & Eric

Carolyn Price is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at the Open University (UK). Her research addresses a broad range of questions about emotions – what they are, what they tell us about the world, the norms by which we evaluate them, and (most recently) their relation to the self. She is also interested in particular types of emotions, – such as love, grief and regret. Her book Emotion (Polity) appeared in 2015.




Eric Walle is an Assistant Professor of Psychological Sciences at the University of California, Merced. His theoretical research emphasizes the functions of emotions, particularly in interpersonal contexts. Empirically, he examines emotional development, principally in infancy and early childhood, as well as how individuals perceive and respond to emotional communication.




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