Annual Meeting Reports

Against the Firewall: Society/Journal Relationships


MODERATORS: Emilie Gunn American Society of Clinical Oncology Alexandria, Virginia Emma Shumeyko National Academy of Sciences Washington DC REPORTER: Andrea Kunz Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer Milwaukee, Wisconsin The interactive CSE 2019 session “Against the Firewall: Society/Journal Relationships” presented hypothetical cases for attendees to work through together in order to find agreeable solutions for maintaining the separation between journals and the non-profit societies that own them. Before reviewing case examples, the moderators provided a brief overview that defined firewalls and why they are important for societies and journals. It was emphasized that firewalls between journals and societies maintain credibility for the journal, ensure that journal content is properly scrutinized for quality and lack of bias, and prevent the journal from becoming a “mouthpiece” for the organization. Upholding the journal’s editorial independence and separating it from the society also provides greater opportunities for conflicts of interest to be properly managed in a secure fashion. Moderators also discussed that, with clear communication, strong leadership, and consistency, journal staff and editors can help enforce firewalls and make sure that they remain effective. While firewalls can often provide clear definitions on how journal issues are to be handled, the moderators explained that there are situations in which both journals and societies can be impacted regardless of what protocols are already in place. These situations require special attention. To further explore such instances, the moderators presented four hypothetical cases for group discussion and resolution. It was noted that one size does not fit all when […]

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