New Publications Chair Heads Search for Journal Editor

One of the first things on Morton Ann Gernsbacher’s plate as the new chair of the APS Publications Committee is to find a new editor for the Society’s flagship journal, Psychological Science. Sam Glucksberg’s term as editor ends with the December 2003 issue. The new editor will begin accepting manuscripts in January, 2003.

Gernsbacher

Gernsbacher, a Fellow and Charter Member of APS, succeeds Henry L. Roediger, III as chair. She is in the Department of Psychology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she holds the title of Sir Frederic C. Bartlett Professor. Her research investigates the general cognitive processes and mechanisms underlying language comprehension. Gernsbacher also is editor of the journal Memory & Cognition.

Roediger, a past member of the APS Board of Directors, led APS’s publications program for the past three years. Among other things, he oversaw the creation of the most recent APS journal, Psychological Science in the Public Interest. He is James S. McDonnell Distinguished Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychology at Washington University at St. Louis, where his research interests focus on retrieval processes in human memory. Roediger will remain on the committee, previous members include Mark Appelbaum, Eugene Borgida, Reid Hastie, Roberta Klatzky, and Lynn Liben.

BIG SHOES TO FILL

“The editorial work for Psychological Science is a joy,” says Glucksberg. To find out what he means by that, see his comments on being editor of Psychological Science, elsewhere on this page.

“I am delighted to be stepping into the role of Chair of the Publications Committee,” Gernsbacher said. ” I have worked on the Publications Committee in the past, under the direction of both Roddy Roediger and years earlier, Bob Krauss. I know I have big shoes to fill.”

Commenting about the search for a new editor for Psychological Science, Roediger notes that the journal “in a relatively short time, has achieved the status of one of the premier publications in all of psychology. It is one of the few journals that psychologists from many different fields still read, and it is probably the only general journal that publishes empirical reports of new findings. Other general journals tend to provide reviews, theories or opinions and do not provide an outlet for new empirical findings.”

“In the future,” he continued, “I see Psychological Science becoming, if anything, even more important than it is now. The Publications Committee has discussed plans of making publication monthly, so as to accommodate more papers. This would also permit more rapid publication of research.”

“The first three editors of Psychological Science [William Estes, John Kihlstrom, and Glucksberg] have been outstanding and have set a high mark for any future editor,” Roediger said. “The next editor of the journal will arrive at a critical time,” Roediger said, “especially if we decide to expand the frequency of publication. We need a new editor with a broad vision of the field, one who will encourage publication of excellent work from all fields. The person will also need to be well-organized and efficient to provide rapid editorial turnaround.”

Gernsbacher expresses similar views: “Psychological Science is a glorious flagship journal,” she said. “I am very excited to be involved with the selection of its next editor. APS and Psychological Science have been served by three superb editors; these shoes will also be hard to fill. I join the rest of the Publications Committee in strongly encouraging nominations for this very important editorship.”


FROM THE EDITOR’S DESK

By Sam Glucksberg
Editor,  Psychological Science
The new editor of Psychological Science will inherit a thriving and vibrant publication, one that has, in a very short time, become one of the premier journals in our field. And not just one speciality field, but the entire scope of scientific psychology.

It’s now been almost three years since I began the editorship of Psychological Science. With the invaluable assistance of Associate Editors James Enns and Gifford Weary, we’ve maintained the visibility and impact generated by the first two editors of our flagship journal, William Estes and John Kihlstrom. Although the work load is substantial (and getting more substantial every year; our submissions have risen from about 300 manuscripts in 1999 to 500 this year), the work is incredibly rewarding. We receive manuscripts in every field of psychological science, from neuroscience to clinical and applied psychology. Clearly, one editor cannot hope to keep up with such a diverse set of topics, and so… associate editors to the rescue. They have full action authority, but with none of the day-to-day editorial management chores. A central office handles all mailing (mostly via e-mail), all record keeping, and all communications with reviewers and authors.

The editorial work for Psychological Science is a joy. First, the papers are brief and to the point. Second, they are primarily of extraordinary high quality, making it difficult to select those that make important contributions while maintaining our commitment to representing all of psychological science. Third, the journal itself is among the top rated in terms of impact. We are now among the top seven in the world, as reflected in the citation indices. Adding to the journal’s impact is its sister publication, Psychological Science in the Public Interest, edited independently by Robert Bjork and Steven Ceci, and distributed as a supplement to Psychological Science.

Because of the journal’s success, we will be increasing the number of pages per volume, and we are currently considering moving from six issues a year to perhaps eight, and eventually, perhaps, to monthly publication. This should not substantially increase the load for the editor and associate editors if, as I expect, one or more additional associate editors can be brought on board.


Glucksberg has been editor of Psychological Science since 1999. He is a professor in the Department of Psychology at Princeton University.

Observer Vol.14, No.7 September, 2001

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