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Cartoon Abstracts

Cartoon Abstracts are a fun new way of visualising academic research.

Browse our Cartoon Abstracts by subject area

Science & Technology

Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences

Regional Studies

Arts & Humanities

Social Science





Science communication

Each individual cartoon abstract summarises the original authors’ work through illustration, harnessing the overwhelming power of images over text. Illustrations can aid the understanding of difficult concepts, broaden the appeal of niche topics, and transcend language barriers.

Elements of humour, intrigue, and parody can be found throughout many of the cartoons, which further increases audience engagement.

Authors love it

“Awesome! It looks really good. I especially like the blond scientist, since he looks a little bit like me.” – Anders Sandberg

“Wow! That's great! Very nice artwork which illustrates some of the issues and generates interest in the article.” – Steve Omohundro

“I think this is a super-cool idea. It's nerdy-fun and conveys the sense of the paper in a very clear way. Also, I really like the sketch of me!”  – Gianluca Baio

Social media loves it

See for yourself, search for mentions of “Cartoon Abstracts” on Twitter.

Absolutely LOVE @tandfonline cartoon research abstracts. Read them all. Now! https://t.co/z01GLhGSIg pic.twitter.com/1cYr9Qx8Qg

— Karen Wespieser (@KarenWespieser) June 7, 2016

These @tandfauthorserv Cartoon Abstracts are FABULOUS! See: https://t.co/fbDLOa3L5D Why: https://t.co/acCU8Jcy5I pic.twitter.com/Ke3aIJJFiE

— Indi HodgsonJohnston (@indihj) February 18, 2016

This is a fantastic innovation in academic publishing! @tandfonline https://t.co/6uKCZ9JmZJ

— Rhiannon McGlade (@RhiannonMcGlade) February 19, 2016

Brilliant way to promote a journal paper! https://t.co/ygxNg9Lisp

— jon turney (@jonWturney) October 9, 2015

Looking forward to more of these!: RT @KathburtonKath#TandFEditors cartooning the textual abstract https://t.co/PcVagx2Gf9

— Altmetric (@altmetric) October 23, 2015

Promoting your research

As well as featuring on Taylor & Francis platforms, you can promote your cartoon through your own channels, including social media. We can also provide authors with posters of their cartoon – these can be used around your department, at conferences, or even in poster sessions.

ALPSP Awards Winner

Winner of the ALPSP Awards for Innovation in Publishing 2016.


Read Cartoon Abstracts on Figshare.

Download your free colour-in cartoon abstract!

Colour in and keep your own copy of the 'Noah's Ark: Only the Beautiful Need Apply' cartoon abstract, or read the original Biodiversity article for free.