Highlights from the Joint Board-Council Committee on Publications

The Joint Board-Council Committee on Publications (JBCCP) assesses the editorial quality and content of the publication program of the Society; serves as a channel among Society members, users of the Society’s publications, and the ACS governing bodies; advises on copyright policy and recommends actions to protect ACS copyright.  Leah Solla, also CINF Secretary (2010-2014), is a member of JBCCP and the associated Copyright Subcommittee and the Chemical and Engineering News Editorial Board.  Highlights of the open portion of the publications committees at the 243rd National Meeting in San Diego are summarized below: 

  • In 2011 ACS Editors-in-Chief handled nearly 100,000 manuscript submissions through the editorial peer review process and ACS Publications published more than 36,000 accepted articles.  In 2011 the global scientific community accessed and downloaded a record 77 million COUNTER-compliant full-text downloads from the ACS Publications Web Editions platform, an 8% growth over 2010.
  • Improvement of ACS branding and impact at the ACS National Meetings included a combined ACS Central booth featuring 11 separate ACS units, including ACS Publications, Chemical Abstracts Service, and Membership & Scientific Advancement.  In total, ACS Publications exhibited at 55 scientific and library conferences in 2011.
  • The “Why I” campaign focused on using real customer testimonials and images to help engage the community and echo the voices of actual researchers reinforcing ACS Publications’ leadership position.
  • ImageA new educational, web-based video series is designed to support researchers with the process of writing, reviewing, submitting and editing original scholarly research for publication in peer reviewed articles.  Episodes released in 2011 include:
    • How to Write a Paper to Communicate Your Research, Prof. George Whitesides (Harvard)
    • Writing your Cover Letter, Prof. Paula Hammond (MIT & Assoc. Editor ACS Nano);      Prof. Tim Lodge (Univ. Minnesota & Editor-in-Chief, Macromolecules), et al
    • Selecting Peers to Suggest to Reviewers, Prof. Richard Eisenberg (University of Rochester & Editor in Chief, Inorganic Chemistry), et al
    • Submitting your Manuscript using the ACS Paragon Plus Environment, Dr. Sarah Tegen (Director Editorial Operations, ACS Publications)
  • The development and publication of five new journals, including ACS Catalysis and ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters in 2011 and early editorial and marketing launch of ACS Macro Letters and ACS Synthetic Biology (formal launch in 2012) was reported.  Approval was secured from the Governing Board for a new journal in the area of green chemistry and sustainability, planned for publication in 2013. 
    A number of new subscription assortments and pricing plans were introduced, including ACS Lab Packs, the ACS Academic Core+, the ACS Metered Access Program, and streamlining of ACS Articles/Issues on Command.
  • Leading scientists were selected by Editor Search committees in accordance of the bylaws, appointed by the Board of Directors and contracted by ACS Publications management:
    • Jonathan Sweedler, University of Illinois Urbana Champaign, new Editor of Analytical Chemistry;
    • Chris Voigt, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, new Editor of ACS Synthetic Biology;
    • Gunda Georg, University of Minnesota, and Shaomeng Wang, University of Michigan, new Co-Editors of Journal of Medicinal Chemistry.
  • ACS Publications worked closely with JBCCP in undertaking formal editorial monitoring studies and reports for journals across the ACS portfolio, and deliberated regarding several editorial reappointments and recommendations to the ACS Board.
  • ImageThe “Most Trusted” brand was enhanced by joining the Committee on Publishing Ethics (COPE) to provide all ACS Editors-in-Chief and Publications Staff access to a network of like-minded editors and publishers to discuss ethical issues and fully utilize the Committee’s guidelines for handling ethical disputes; pilot implementation of CrossCheck, a cross-publisher initiative to detect plagiarism in journal articles as part of the peer review and publication process; and updating the ACS Publications “Ethical Guidelines to Publication of Chemical Research.”
  • ImageThe mobile program to the Android environment was extended.  ACS Mobile now delivers about 50,000 abstract downloads and 7,500 C&EN news feeds a month with the 10,000+ user base.  A free dedicated C&EN Mobile app was also introduced for iPhones, iPads, and Android mobile devices.  Subscription access to C&EN content via C&EN Mobile is a new, free ACS member benefit; members can access all new C&EN issues on their smartphone or tablet at no charge.
  • Completion of the first phase of the C&EN Publishing Automation Program (CPAP 1.0) to create a digital, end-to-end workflow, including rendering all C&EN content in high-quality XML.  Introduction of the Biological SCENE and the Materials SCENE, two new syndication channels to provide content from C&EN and papers in ACS journals.
    C&EN’s twitter feed (@cenmag) has more than 3,600 followers.
    C&EN’s Facebook page (http://facebook.com/cenews) added 1,207 “likers” this year, bringing the total to nearly 3000.C&EN’s YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/cenonline) contains about 100 C&EN-created videos and has received more than 122,500 views altogether;  the videos are embedded by other major media outlets, such as the Wired and BoingBoing blogs.
  • ImageACS Publications celebrated the International Year of Chemistry (IYC) with publication of the ACS International Year of Chemistry Virtual Journal with other ACS offices and programs, highlighting health, environment, energy and materials research from a number of ACS Publications.  The journal published 12 issues in 2011 and received approximately 10,000 downloads.

    C&EN contributions included:

    • The cover story of the June 27, 2011 issue, “Celebrating IYC 2011”;
    • Series of “IYC Profiles” of ACS members native to foreign countries where there are  very few ACS members, including Cuba, Fiji, Lebanon, Burkina Faso, Moldova, Azerbaijan, Vietnam, Ghana, Mauritius, Bosnia, Mongolia, and Honduras;
    • The CENtral Science IYC 2011 blog, which chronicled events associated with the celebration throughout the year.
  • ACS Publications worked closely with CAS to experiment with a number of features that utilize and expose CAS SciFinder tools within the ACS Web Editions platform, and vice versa:
    • Patent Limiter allows users to launch a SciFinder patent-only search within any of the journal or eBook articles on the ACS Web Editions site.
    • CAS Section Subject Index allows users to search, browse and discover content with CAS subject taxonomy on the ACS Web Editions site.
    • ACS Reference Quick view allows users to quickly access multiple publisher article abstracts and metadata for references found in ACS journal articles without leaving the ACS Web Editions platform.
    • CAS SciFinder allows users to display a graphical abstract and table of contents elements from ACS Journals within CAS records, and to easy access reaction narratives and other experimental procedures from selected journals.
  • A new ACS Member Subscription Benefit program offers every ACS member immediate and universal access to the entire portfolio of ACS’s journal and book publications, including access to the ACS Legacy Archive and the recently released C&EN Archive. 25 full-text articles may be downloaded annually by each member.  End-users can also register for ACS IDs to opt in to a range of content and news alerts.  There are more than 166,000 ACS ID registrants, up 30% over 2010, and less than 25% of these are paid ACS members, making this cohort an attractive audience to whom the benefits of ACS membership can be promoted.

For more information or to contact JBCCP, please see: http://portal.acs.org/portal/PublicWebSite/about/governance/committees/jbccp/index.htm

Leah Solla, Member, Joint Board Council Committee on Publications