PS.5. Setting up or improving your journal

Sunday 10 June: 08:45 – 10:15
Parallel Session 5
Main auditorium, Ground floor

Setting up or improving your journal
Chair: Pippa Smart, PSP Consulting / EASE Vice President, UK

  • Establishing a new online open access Journal (Elisabeth Bowley, Frontiers, Switzerland)
  • Improving your journal: teamwork experience of a small medical journal (Cem Uzun, Balkan Medical Journal, Turkey)
  • Obstacles to developing journals – especially in low income countries (Kianoush Khosravi Darani, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Iran)
  • Moving a journal to a new publisher (Marlene Bras, Journal of the International AIDS Society, Switzerland)
  • Two practical issues for journal editors – data protection, principles of transparency Pippa Smart, PSP Consulting / EASE Vice President, UK)
  • Panel discussion – how can EASE support editors?

Session overview
Knowing how to resolve problems and improve the impact of your journal can be a challenge for many editors. There is a wealth of experience and knowledge from within the EASE membership, so this session will draw on the experiences of editors and publishers in both resource-rich and resource-poor environments. During the session, presenters will highlight the priorities that all editors must take into consideration when developing both new and established journals; provide hints and tips on how to achieve rapid and longer-term impact; and share experiences of what has – and has – not worked for them. The session will allow plenty of time for discussion and asking questions and will close with a panel discussion of what EASE can do to support editors – audience participation is encouraged.

Establishing a new online open access Journal
Elisabeth Bowley, Life Sciences, Switzerland

Over 1,000 open access journals are launched each year. When launching a new journal, there are many aspects to consider. What is the long term vision for the journal? How do I build a successful editorial board? Have all the technical details been considered? Will this journal be financially viable? When preparing for a new journal launch, there are several key milestones that need to be achieved. This presentation will highlight the steps to achieve successful launch of a new, online, open access journal and strategies to establish the journal within its field. The Editorial Board is critical to the success of a new journal and the role of editorial board members will be emphasised, along with the importance of aligning expectations and having clear aims. Setting specific content strategies will ensure the first publications set the standards; encouraging future submissions and putting the journal in a strong position to achieve long term sustainability from the start.

Improving Your Journal: A Teamwork Experience of a Small Medical Journal
Cem Uzun, Balkan Medical Journal and Trakya University, Turkey

Improvement or deterioration of a small scientific journal is affected by many factors but mainly depends on the editing skills, vision and teamwork ability of an editor. This presentation explains how a teamwork approach improved a small journal.

Balkan Medical Journal, the official journal of the Trakya University Faculty of Medicine, has been published since 1979. I served as an associate editor (2004-2008) and EIC (2012-2016). We developed a specific teamwork to meet the needs of our journal in 2005 and improved it in line with emerging needs in 2013. With the new system, the editorial board met every week and evaluated all submitted manuscripts to select best papers. The instructions, submission system and the language of the journal were improved collectively. The editorial and reviewer boards were internationalized.

Our team aimed to publish high scientific and ethically quality articles. We became a member of, and strictly followed instructions from COPE, WAME, EASE and ICMJE. We also organized or attended important educational activities to teach reviewers, authors and our editorial team, and followed COPE and EASE Conferences in order to keep updated about current knowledge on editing issues.

As a result of improving the quality with editorial group collaboration and transparent new system, the journal was accepted to SCIE, PMC, and Medline in 2007, 2014 and 2016, respectively. The submission, rejection and full-text download rates, and the IF significantly increased (≈2000, 93%, 13.000/month and 1.084, respectively).

Obstacles to developing journals – especially in low income countries
Kianoush Khosravi Darani, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Iran

The publication chain is complex and involves different skills with editors playing an important role in balancing the journal’s equilibrium – and keeping everyone happy (authors, reviewers, readers, staff, editorial members, publishers and indexing companies). Problems are magnified when one wishes to start a new journal, especially in developing countries. Ethical issues are a pressure point, as well as the need to improve the quality of the journal and become indexed in important databases (which may change over time). The editor often has to balance conflicting needs and improve the everyday operation of the journal whilst maintaining the integrity of the scientific content. This talk will present the challenges and approaches taken when launching a new journal in this environment, and present practical experiences of running a new journal, plus suggestions for improving the quality of the journal and becoming indexed.

Moving a journal to a new publisher
Marlene Bras, International AIDS Society, Switzerland

In a rapidly changing landscape, moving a journal from a learned society to a new publisher has become more and more common. However, before selecting a new publishing partner, several criteria must be to be considered: have the society/editors clearly identified the strengths, weaknesses and specific needs of their journal? Is your future publisher embracing early trends and new technologies before they become hard trends? Does your future publishing partner have an understanding of your field of learning and society values? How will your new publisher support the editors/society in developing the journal and increasing its visibility? From the biding process to the actual transition process, this presentation will discuss the key steps involved in identifying and moving a journal to a new publisher and the lessons learnt on the way.

Two practical issues – data protection, principles of transparency
Pippa Smart, PSP Consulting / EASE Vice President, UK

This talk will briefly consider two new issues which editors of new or existing journals need to be aware of. Firstly, the European Union has introduced new data protection legislation – the GDPR – which editors and publishers need to comply with to avoid heavy penalties. Second, COPE, OASPA and DOAJ have updated their principles of transparency, providing useful guidelines which all journals should adhere to if they wish to be considered quality-assured publications.