Volume 2 Article 1

Editorial: What is Professional Development? An Invitation

Stephen Palmer1,2 and Siobhain O’Riordan1,2


1International Academy for Professional Development Ltd, UK

2Wales Academy for Professional Practice and Applied Research, University of Wales Trinity Saint David, UK

Copyright: International Academy for Professional Development Ltd

Published: 8 June, 2024

New paper statement: Confirmed

Details of funding/grants: None declared

Conflict of interest declaration: There is no potential conflict of interest in respect of my authorship or the publication of this paper

Acknowledgements: None declared

Article citation: Palmer, S., & O’Riordan, S. (2024). Editorial: What is Professional Development? An invitation. Journal of Professional Development, 2, 1, 1-3. 

What is professional development?

There are many definitions or descriptions of professional development. As editors of the Journal of Professional Development we have previously described it as ‘the process of gaining knowledge and skills in one’s area of work. Professional bodies usually have an expectation that their members will engage in continuing professional development (CPD) over the course of their careers. CPD can involve attending relevant conferences, workshops, masterclassess, and courses. It also includes self-directed learning such as reading journal articles and books, and writing articles for trade magazines and academic journals. Professional bodies often expect their members to maintain CPD logbooks which are sometimes audited by the organisation‘ (JOPD, 2023). We cordially invite academics, consultants, lecturers, teachers, theorists, and practitioners to submit articles and share perspectives on the nature of professional development.

The Journal of Professional Development

We will publish articles on all aspects of the theory, research and practice of professional development including conference reports, keynote papers and book reviews. The journal’s key aim is to provide the professional development community a publication to share developments in the professional development field, across a range of disciplines.

Subjects can include professional development in a wide range of settings including accountancy, management, education, psychology, health, counselling, coaching; Continuing professional development (CPD); Maintaining professional development records or logbooks; Theories of professional development, learning and education; How to develop professional body recognised CPD programmes; Reports and discussion about research; Supervision; Interventions to enhance professional development.

Articles are published online as soon as they are ready and are added to the “current” volume’s Table of Contents. Articles need an abstract and 5 or 6 keywords. In order to publish accepted articles promptly, the journal will use article numbers instead of the traditional method of continuous pagination through any particular volume. Articles should be submitted using our Article Template. The journal uses the latest APA style (7th ed) for referencing and citations. The journal is a text only journal, so we do not generally accept tables, figures, images or photos in submissions. Although all articles will be accessible to preview on the journal website, an Open Access provision is available for authors wishing to pay a fee. All authors will need to obtain their own ORCID identifier which will be included on their article.

The journal website provides further information on submitting articles (see: https://jpd.iafpd.info/submission). We look forward to receiving contributions.


JOPD (2023). What is Professional Development. Journal of Professional Developmenthttps://jpd.iafpd.info/what-is-professional-development/


Professor Stephen Palmer PhD FIoL is Director of the International Academy of Professional Development. He is Professor of Practice at the Wales Academy for Professional Practice and Applied Research, University of Wales Trinity Saint David, and Coordinating Director of the ISCP International Centre for Coaching Psychology Research. Stephen is an Adjunct Professor at Aalborg University, Denmark, Fellow and Honorary President of the International Society for Coaching Psychology. Also he is Fellow of the Institute of Leadership, and the Institute of Training and Occupational Learning. Stephen co-edits several academic journals and has written/edited 60 books and over 300 articles.


Dr Siobhain O’Riordan PhD FISCP is a chartered psychologist and chartered scientist. She is a Fellow and Chair of the International Society for Coaching Psychology (ISCP) and a member of the International Research Centre Development Team of the ISCP. She is a Director of the International Academy for Professional Development Ltd, and also an Honorary Research Fellow at the Wales Academy for Professional Practice and Applied Research, University of Wales Trinity Saint David.

Dr Siobhain O’Riordan’s recent book, Introduction to Coaching Psychology (with Palmer) was published in 2021 by Routledge in the Coaching Psychology Book Series.