A long time ago, I had a discussion with a PhD candidate. He was honest and always shares his experience about his academic life. One of several things he has mentioned is the importance of building some connections for the sake of publications. Unfortunately, he did not elaborate about how one can build this skill. I would like to pursue my PhD, and before doing so, I need to publish some papers, at least as a second or third author, until I know how the process of publications works.

When I was conducting my Master, which would have been the perfect time to publish, my supervisor was extremely hard to deal with when it came to publications. He doesn't believe in publications for the sake of it; rather he only publishes new and extremely fancy ideas, if there any, or he enhances some approaches but these enhancements also must be invaluable. I've read several papers from big names in the same field with simple yet effective ideas. This is not only me complaining about this issue, but all his students do so. Honestly, my supervisor is friendly, respectful, and has a PhD in engineering with extremely strong background in mathematics. He is extremely careful about his reputation. For example, he conducts his own publications without sharing or at least telling his students about that. I can understand that but as a grad student, I think I have a right to know how publications are done. Unfortunately, this kind of experience is hard to pick up from books.

So my question:

How do people conduct, share and publish their ideas based on connections they build off-campus?

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    "He doesn't believe in publications for the sake of it" he sounds like a good advisor – Luigi Feb 3 '17 at 4:16
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    A publication is the end product of a collaboration. You are basically asking how to find collaborators and that has been discussed on this site before. Your best bet usually is utilizing your advisor's connections to establish collaborations. – Roland Feb 3 '17 at 7:17
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    You have it backwards: first produce good science then think about publishing it. Whether you "need" papers published is irrelevant. – Cape Code Feb 3 '17 at 7:54
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    @CroCo Honestly, the stuff people publish "for the sake of publications" is very often not well thought through and at the end of the day crap with a catchy title. – skymningen Feb 3 '17 at 12:55
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    I support the use of the word 'crap' in this context. It's not an academic term by any means, but its disparaging nature highlights the noteworthy disdain felt by the academic community to such articles. They are not likely 'crap' in the context of literature as a whole, but their expendable, commodified nature in the related disciplinary cannon makes them surplus and potentially useless. – C26 Feb 3 '17 at 14:45

People who attempt to publish for the sake of it are of little credit to their field. Publishing is about giving back to your field, not taking from it. The likelihood of publication is not based on 'networking' as such, it is based on the strength of the work. If you submit a high enough quality manuscript to a journal, it will be reviewed/accepted regardless of your network. Focus on good writing and research, the rest will come.

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