Open-access chemistry journal edited by Bath academics doubles its impact factor in 12 months

The latest journal impact factors released by Thomson Reuters show that Chemistry Central Journal has a new impact factor of 3.28, the highest for any open access chemistry journal. Its editorial board includes three Bath chemists, Drs Simon Lewis & Matthew Jones, and Professor Tony James.

Organic section editor Simon Lewis said: “Such a marked increase in the impact factor over such a short period really shows that open-access publishing is coming of age in the area of chemistry and can compete with the established journals to reach a far greater audience.

"The University has had a long relationship with Chemistry Central Journal, who have supported several events here at Bath, such as last year’s successful Catalysis & Sensing for Health (CASH) conference.”

The announcement of the new impact factor coincides with the announcement by David Willets, Universities & Science Minister, that the government wants all taxpayer-funded research to be free to view by 2014.

Under the traditional journal publishing model, only those with a subscription are able to read or download articles, whereas under the open-access model, articles are free to view for everyone after the authors pay an article processing charge.

This new policy is in response to the Finch Report entitled “Accessibility, sustainability, excellence: how to expand access to research publications”, published on 18 June.

"Whilst the idea of paying an article processing charge can deter some authors at first, the costs can be covered by many funding bodies," says Lewis. “The funding councils allow researchers to request additional funds when writing a grant proposal, specifically for dissemination of their results.

"Also, it is worth pointing out that as editors of Chemistry Central Journal, our top priority is attracting excellent manuscripts for publication to build further on our rapid progress these last 12 months. As such, if any author sees the article processing charge as a potential barrier to submission, I would definitely encourage them to contact us directly.”

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