I am about to run a survey on large number of engineers in a specific field and ask them about a few specific methods they use for in their industry/research.


  • Are you a researcher/engineer/student?

  • Which of the following methods have you heard about? A B C D E

  • Which of the following methods have you used in your work? A B C D E

  • etc ...

I would like to know if such a survey has any academic value for being published in an engineering journal/conference such as IEEE or Elsevier?

Also, do you know examples of such papers?

  • 2
    This is quite common in studies of education - analysis of surveys. See e.g., tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.11120/bmhe.2014.00006 where they present interview data. You should probably draw some conclusion from the survey, search the field for similar studies, etc. Commented Jul 4, 2018 at 8:23
  • The warning is: to get approval from your university before you begin. They may have an approval process for research with human subjects, and yes a survey qualifies.
    – GEdgar
    Commented Jul 18, 2018 at 17:54
  • @GEdgar "They may have an approval process for research with human subjects" I mean, I hope they would. Commented Jul 18, 2018 at 18:12

3 Answers 3


I note a couple of things. Your paper wouldn't be about Engineering per se. But it might be related to Engineering Education. This would be the case if the paper is exploring gaps in education or ways to improve it.

Note that "education" here doesn't necessarily mean formal education. It could be about how new techniques percolate through the practitioners and how that can be improved (Training, workshops, ...)

I don't believe that IEEE has a SIG (special interest group) dedicated to education, but such SIGs normally have conferences and publish proceedings and maybe journals.

In particular ACM has an education sig (SIGCSE) that is very active, holds several annual conferences in the US and abroad and publishes conference proceedings, though no formal journal (informative newsletters, etc. only). Some education related things show up in Communications of the ACM. However, the ACM is almost entirely software oriented, whereas IEEE, while concerned with both, focuses more on the hardware side.

With no specific Education SIG at IEEE, you may not find a comfortable resting place for your paper there.


Addressing your concerns directly, from the details you have provided so far in the question, I doubt it can published in an engineering discipline as a journal or conference such as IEEE or Elsevier. That is unless it is a part of a much more relevant topic of interest in the venue to which you wish to publish.

For instance, in a literature survey of methods to solve a certain problem, you can discuss how prominent a method is from the data drawn from your survey. To look at it in another way, you look at the least favored method and try to explain on how it can be harnessed to give better results than the most favored. There are countless claims you can make based on the conclusions drawn from your survey.


I have seen such things but they were published as articles in trade publications (e.g. OR/MS or ISE magazine) for the relevant engineering & academic societies?

As pointed out, there may be fields where this is publishable in a conference proceeding or journal, but I've not seen it personally outside the trade publications.

Anecdotally though, I've had several well recognized professors tell me that their articles in these trade publications have been very well received and stimulated a lot of interest.

To specifically answer your question, Phalanx published a members survey of their analysts in one of their recent issues (quarterly).

If you're interested in doing it, my advice is (1) ask the editor if they're interested or (2) just write it up and send it in.

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