News from Other Organizations

Asian Council of Science Editors, Patricia K Baskin

The Asian Council of Science Editors (ACSE) is a new organization that is based in Dubai, UAE. Muhammad Sarwar, a spokesman for the group, says that “ACSE is dedicated to promoting best practices in scholarly publish ing in the region. It works with journal editors and publishers offering networking, training, skillboosting workshops, and discussion forums. ACSE strives to enhance its members’ understanding, skills, and knowledge and thus raise the quality and reliability of the scientific literature. ACSE believes in collaboration with other similar organizations working for the same purpose. We believe in developing strategic partnerships, strong communication, and ties with these organiza tions to enhance the productivity and results.”

ACSE held its first meeting in Dubai on 14–15 August 2014. More than 20 participants from Egypt, India, Iran, Pakistan, Turkey, the UAE, and the UK attended. Presentations were based on the theme “Open-Access Scholarly Publishing in Asia: Changes and Challenges”. On the second day of the meeting, an open forum included discussions about the presentations and the future of this new organization. A key element was to provide a networking plat form for sharing ideas regarding scientific publication. The president of ACSE is Majid Moridani, of the Medical College of Wisconsin. ACSE’s Web site (theacse.com) will announce plans as they are developed. The ACSE 2015 annual meeting will be held in Dubai on 14–15 August. The registration deadline is 1 August 2015.

Board of Editors in the Life Sciences in 2014, Leslie E Neistadt

The Board of Editors in the Life Sciences (BELS) is having another active year in 2014. Membership is now more than 1100 distributed over 19 countries. We recently welcomed 23 new Editors in the Life Sciences and three new Diplomate Editors in the Life Sciences. Congratulations to all who passed the certification and diplomate exams!

The BELS annual meeting and dinner were held on the San Antonio River Walk in May. We gathered at the Iron Cactus Mexican Grill and Margarita Bar, where we enjoyed the local food and drink (perhaps the latter slightly more than the former, but the combination made for a pleasant evening). Rick Weisburd and I talked about our trip to Seoul in fall 2013, when we offered the first BELS exam in South Korea. The scientific-editing community in South Korea is thriving, and leaders there view BELS certification as a way of demonstrating their professionalism.

BELS members are looking forward to celebrating the 25th anniversary of the organization in 2016. Back in 1991, the founders probably never imagined that the organization would grow to be so large in such a short time. We hope that all BELS members will join us in Denver to honor their vision. In the meantime, we’ll gather in Philadelphia in May for the next annual meeting and dinner.

Exam 145 was given at the meeting of the European Association of Science Editors in Split, Croatia. Upcoming exams will be held in Seoul, South Korea (September); Memphis, Tennessee (October); Washington, DC (December); Mumbai, India (February 2015); and, of course, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, at the CSE annual meeting in May. For more information on BELS, visit the Web site: bels.org.

12th General Assembly and Conference of the European Association of Science Editors, Ana Marušić

The European Association of Science Editors (EASE) defines itself as an “internationally oriented community of individuals from diverse backgrounds, linguistic traditions, and professional experience who share an interest in science communication and editing”. To keep pace with the rapid development of scientific publishing, EASE changed its triennial general assemblies to biennial events. The 2014 assembly was held in Split, Croatia, on 13–15 June and was hosted by the University of Split and its School of Medicine. The theme of the conference was “The Complexity of Editing in Science”.

The speakers and conference sessions reflected that complexity and diversity, beginning with the keynote lecture by Timothy Hunt, the 2001 Nobel laureate in physiology and medicine, of Cancer Research UK. Hunt talked about how science can be difficult for scientists in general to understand, even when it is well understood by specialists. Editors in the audience were thankful for his comment that “a good editor is worth his or her weight in gold”. Milena Žic Fuchs, of the University of Zagreb School of Humanities and Social Sciences and the chair of the Standing Committee for the Humanities of the European Science Foundation, stressed the importance of humanities in research, illustrating it with the initiatives to enhance communication among disciplines within the Grand Challenges of the HORIZON 2020 Framework Programme for Research and Innovation of the European Union. Elizabeth Wager, of Sideview, presented current research in peer review and provided a look into its future, suggesting that we should talk more about research dissemination than about publication and calling for more readability, comprehensibility, accuracy, and usability of the research-communication process. Douglas Altman, of the Centre for Statistics in Medicine, UK, and the EQUATOR Network, closed the conference with the message to the editors and researchers that good reporting is not optional but is a part of doing good research!

Concurrent conference sessions addressed diverse topics: social media as a tool for journals, translation of scientific information for different audiences and purposes, sex-sensitive research and reporting, publication ethics, professional development for editors, research in editorial and journal issues, and reporting guidelines.

It is difficult to describe the great atmosphere of the Split meeting—from its daily newsletter “Split Infinitive”, through several excellent preconference and postconference workshops, to social events in the 2000-year-old city of Split. Collected tweets from the conference, available at https://storify.com/dvlpmntduncs/ease-2014, provide an insight into the European editorial community. Please join us at the next EASE conference in Strasbourg, France, in 2016!

International Society of Managing and Technical Editors 2014 North American Meeting, Kristen Overstreet

The International Society of Managing and Technical Editors (ISMTE) is a growing organization that connects the community of professionals committed to the peer review and publication of academic and professional journals. ISMTE’s mission is to provide peerto-peer networking, education and training, research, and resources for best practices and development of journal policy (ismte.org).

ISMTE held its 2014 North American meeting in Philadelphia on 14–15 August. In collaboration with ISMTE, the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) held a full-day meeting at the same venue on 13 August.

Highlights of the ISMTE meeting included the following:

  • The keynote address featuring Kent Anderson (CEO and publisher of the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery and its parent company, STRIATUS, and founder of the Scholarly Kitchen blog), Matt Giampoala (executive journals editor for Wiley), and Jason Roberts (senior partner of Origin Editorial and ISMTE past president), discussing “State of the Art and Profession: An Editorial Office Update”.
  • Breakout sessions on handling appeals, the publication landscape in China, editor-inchief transitions, how to conduct research as an editorial-office professional, working with production, navigating policy, an Excel workshop, freelancing, Publishing 101, submission-system vendor presentations, and a session on peer-review evaluation.
  • A panel discussion on various types of transitions that a journal may face and how to make informed decisions.
  • The poster session, the speed networking session, and the always-popular exchange forum, in which attendees had the opportunity to ask provocative questions and receive answers from their gathered peers.

The penultimate event was a session presented by Robert Bazell, former chief science correspondent for NBC News, whose topic was “ Reporting on Science in the Media”.

ISMTE’s European meeting was held in London on 13–14 October at the Charles Darwin House, with COPE hosting a halfday meeting on the morning of 13 October.

Society for Scholarly Publication: The 36th Annual Meeting, Patricia K Baskin

The 36th annual meeting of the Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP) was held on 28–30 May at the Westin Boston Waterfront Hotel in Boston, Massachusetts. The meeting’s theme was “Who’s at Stake and What’s at Stake? Looking Outward at the Future of Scholarly Publishing”.

SSP President Kent Anderson and the program and education committees assembled an impressive list of speakers and gathered a wide array of scholarly publishing topics that were presented in the premeeting seminars, keynote addresses, concurrent sessions, and discussion roundtables. The premeeting seminar topics included open-access mandates and policies for deposits in repositories, new technologies and global developments, the role of third-party publishers for societies, and the basics of journal production.

Thought-provoking keynote addresses included those by Chris Lintott, astronomer at the University of Oxford and copresenter of the BBC’s “Sky at Night”, and a combination keynote by Dan Cohen, director of the Digital Public Library of America, and Jill Cousins, executive director of the Europeana Foundation. Concurrent sessions treated such topics as exploring the variety of skills that publishers need in the 21st century, making innovation happen, making mobile-product development choices, the continuum from journals to data repositories, expanding public access to federally funded research results, publishing multimedia materials, peer-review options, building engagement on the social Web, issues facing librarians, Altmetrics, new standards and technologies in publishing, ORCID initiatives, and understanding contributor roles in scholarly publications.

The popular luncheon roundtables fostered open and enthusiastic conversations regarding the newest technical and industry-related information. The luncheons and the breaks between sessions spent in the exhibit hall with exuberant vendors of the latest publishing products provided exciting network opportunities for the nearly 1000 attendees.

PATRICIA K BASKIN is executive editor, Neurology journals, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

LESLIE E NEISTADT is managing editor, Journal of Athletic Training, St. Louis, Missouri.

ANA MARUŠIĆ is vice president of EASE, editor-in-chief of the Journal of Global Health, and professor of anatomy and chair of the department of research in biomedicine and health at the University of Split School of Medicine, Split, Croatia.

KRISTEN OVERSTREET is president of ISMTE and senior partner of Origin Editorial, LLC, and lives in Leander, Texas.