CSE News

Communicating Science and Making It Matter: CSE’s 2011 Annual Meeting in Baltimore

Cutting-edge science is getting published every day by the thousands of scientific, medical, and technical publications represented by Council of Science Editors members. How will scientific advances be communicated to people working in hospitals and laboratories and to the lay public? Why does it matter? In light of those questions, the theme of CSE’s annual meeting is “Making Science Matter”; the meeting will be held in Baltimore, 1–3 May 2011, after the presession short courses on 29–30 April.

Publishing scientific breakthroughs is important, but even more important is communicating how and why these breakthroughs matter to scientists and the public. CSE’s 2011 meeting will feature three keynote addresses on this topic:

  • John Whyte, MD, MPH, chief medical expert and vice president for medical and patient education at the Discovery Channel: His role is to develop, design, and deliver educational programming that appeals to both medical and lay audiences. His presentation is titled “Effective Ways to Communicate Science Messages to the Public”.
  • Darlene Cavalier, “The Science Cheerleader” and founder of a science blog that promotes the involvement of citizens in science and science-related policy: She will educate attendees on what a citizen–scientist is in her presentation “Bringing Science to the People!”
  • Keith A Baggerly, PhD, of the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, an award-winning presenter whose work in forensic bioinformatics has been the subject of features in Nature, Science, and The New York Times: his presentation is titled “The Importance of Reproducibility in High-Throughput Studies: Case Studies in Forensic Bioinformatics”.

Other sessions will address communication with one’s audience, including how to publish a controversial report:

  • “Media Outreach: Tips for Getting Attention in a Wired World”, moderated by Bill Silberg, Silberg Consulting.
  • “Disseminating Science to the Public: Dos and Don’ts”, moderated by Pierrette Tremblay,Elements Magazine.
  • “Social Media Metrics”, by Angela Collom, American College of Physicians, and Bob Sumner,Clinical Chemistry, moderated by Mary Beth Schaeffer, Annals of Internal Medicine.
  • “Publishing Controversial Research”, by Angela Collom, American College of Physicians, and Peter Adams, American Physiological Society, moderated by Mary Boylan, American College of Physicians.

We hope that the keynote sessions and the other sessions noted will communicate the theme, “Making Science Matter”, and inspire you.


Standards for authorship have long been a meeting topic. To further the discussion, the annual meeting will include a fascinating point–counterpoint with Patricia Baskin, of Neurology, and Denis Baskin, of the University of Washington and Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Instead of the standard presenter–lecturer format, the Baskins will each present a side of the argument in this point–counterpoint format.

Relationships between journals and industry will be explored in various other sessions, including the following:

  • “The Road Less Traveled: Why Contributorship Is Worth the Walk”, with Mary D Scheetz, PhD, Research Integrity Consulting; Kristi Overgaard, American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine; and Diane ScottLichter, American Association for Cancer Research.
  • “Navigating the Bermuda Triangle: Dodgy Journal–Author–Industry Relationships”, with Holly Zoog, Amgen.
  • “Update on the Authors’ Submission Toolkit”, with Ann Murphy, The Oncologist, and Robert Enck, MD, American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, moderated by Al Weigel, Boehringer-Ingelheim, and Frank David, MD, PhD, Leerink Swann.


A budding, kudzu vine–esque growth in the publication office is managing ethics issues that involve authors, reviewers, and editors. CSE members are now managing ethics issues daily. The annual meeting will feature several sessions on ethics, including ways to establish policies and discussions of common ethics problems. These sessions include the following:

  • Short Course on Publication Ethics: A full-day session on 29 April, this course will use case studies and CSE’s White Paper on Promoting Integrity in Scientific Journal Publications, 2009 Updateto present approaches for investigating suspicions of breaches of publishing ethics and uses of errata, retractions, expressions of concerns, and sanctions.
  • “Ethics Clinic: The What, When, and Where of Data Sharing”, moderated by Jennifer Mahar, John Wiley and Sons, and Anna Trudgett, American Society of Hematology.
  • “Image Integrity”, with Kirsten Miles, PI Outcomes, and moderated by Addeane S Caelleigh, University of Virginia School of Medicine.
  • “What Can Editors Do to Deter and Detect Scientific Misconduct?”, a four-person panel moderated by Kristi Overgaard, American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine.
  • “Editors Battling International White Coat Crime, aka Misconduct”, with Susan Garfinkle, PhD, Office of Research Integrity, and moderated by Debbie Parrish, Parrish Law Offices.

Short Courses

As always, CSE’s renowned short courses will be offered on various subjects, including publication ethics (as described above; see also p 32):

  • Journal Editors: To offer a comprehensive survey of the roles and responsibilities of scientific journals to newly appointed editors and provide a refresher for experienced colleagues.
  • Publication Management: To introduce new managing editors and other publication managers to, and reinforce seasoned publication managers in, efficient and effective methods of managing a journal.
  • Manuscript Editors: To introduce beginning editors to the tools of the trade and to enable seasoned editors to stay competitive in the field.
  • Journal Metrics: To explore the kinds of data available to journal managers and why it is important to understand them.

We are trying a change in format this year, with some sessions of the usual 90-minute length and others of 60 minutes. We believe that this year’s meeting will be dynamic and interesting for all attendees. With diverse speakers and an engaging program, as outlined further on CSE’s Web site, we hope that the CSE Baltimore meeting inspires you. The convenient location for so many members should lead to a well-attended meeting this year.

2011 Program Committee

The 2011 Program Committee is chaired by Mary Beth Schaeffer and Glenn Landis. Committee members are Peter Adams, Tony Alves, Denis Baskin, Patricia Baskin, Philippa Benson, Mary Boylan, John Breithaupt, Barbara Meyers Ford, Carissa Gilman, Kelly Hadsell, Nan Hallock, Robert Harrington, Kenneth Heideman, George Kendall, Linda Kesselring, Milka Kostic, Christine Laine, Thomas Lang, Andres Martin, Ana Marusic, Debbie McClanahan, Kimberly McGhee, Sheehan Misko, Kristi Overgaard, Ingrid Philibert, Mauricio Rocha de Silva, Angela Schmeckebier, Jonathan Schultz, Bill Silberg, Adrian Stanley, Pierrette Tremblay, Mary Whitman, and Holly Zoog.