Journal of Medical Physics
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EDITORIAL
Year : 2011  |  Volume : 36  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 1-2
 

Journal of Medical Physics marches on


Editor-in-Chief, JMP, AMPI, C/o RP & AD, CT & CRS, BARC, Anushaktinagar, Mumbai - 400 094, India

Date of Web Publication12-Jan-2011

Correspondence Address:
A S Pradhan
Editor-in-Chief, JMP, AMPI, C/o RP & AD, CT & CRS, BARC, Anushaktinagar, Mumbai - 400 094
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0971-6203.75465

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How to cite this article:
Pradhan A S. Journal of Medical Physics marches on. J Med Phys 2011;36:1-2

How to cite this URL:
Pradhan A S. Journal of Medical Physics marches on. J Med Phys [serial online] 2011 [cited 2019 Nov 22];36:1-2. Available from: http://www.jmp.org.in/text.asp?2011/36/1/1/75465


Five years ago in 2006, Journal of Medical Physics (JMP) took a big leap forward by going online and entering in a new era of publication. [1] Ambitious goals were set to take the journal to new heights by raising its standard of scientific and technical contents. Although majority of the editorials in the issues during these 5 years were devoted to technical aspects of contemporary topics, nontechnical 'editorials' like this one occasionally become important to evaluate the progress and to share the information with readers so as to be able to set newer goals and to bridge the gap between expectations and ground reality.

JMP has actually grown [2],[3] from strength to strength since 2006, as can be seen from the data in [Table 1]. The number of manuscripts per issue has gone up from about 6 (about 40 printed pages) to about 8-9 (about 60 printed pages) in 2010. Enhancement of reputation of this journal is obvious as the number of authors from countries other than India enrolling as an author has gone up from 24% in 2006 to 64% in 2010. The efforts put up in evaluating the manuscripts are evident from the number of times refereeing is sought in a year [Table 1]; for example during the year 2009, the referees were approached 299 times (in most cases, referees are approached more than once, generally two to three times for each manuscript) for revisions and re-revisions during decision-making, including change of referees or search for newer referees where the selected referees did not respond; or the referees had contradictory recommendations, which necessitated further consultation with adjudicators. To demonstrate the popularity of JMP, the publisher started inclusion of 'Author Institution Map' in each issue since the publication of April-June issue of 2009. [4] The present status of the projected impact factor, authors, referees and members of the Editorial Board in different countries is shown in [Table 2]. A projected impact factor of 0.42 attained by JMP definitely indicates very good progress as this value is comparable with several Science Citation Index (SCI)-indexed journals. It is satisfying to note that a large number of authors from 35 countries, encompassing regions from east to west, including developing and developed countries (India included), have already chosen JMP for publication of their scientific work.
Table 1 :Progress of online version of Journal of Medical Physics from 2006 to 2010

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Table 2 :Present status of Journal of Medical Physics

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Wider participation of authors from different countries has enhanced pressure on the refereeing system as the standard and the variety of the submitted manuscripts started varying considerably. While authors in most institutions are opting for JMP in view of its wide visibility (free readership), author-friendly methodology (no charges for publishing a scientific paper), impartial evaluation (double-blind refereeing - no details of authors and reviewers are made known to each other), punctual online and print publication and fast refereeing process, some authors did take for granted leniency in the procedure of acceptance of manuscripts and attempted for an easy forum by submitting their substandard or out-of-the-scope manuscripts. This has not only increased the rate of rejection from 46% in 2006 [2] to about 70% in 2010, but has also necessitated enhancement in the efforts by way of seeking opinions of supplementary referees for specialized topics (sharp increase in the number of times refereeing has to be sought, [Table 1]). It was soon realized that the policy of limiting the refereeing within the members of the Editorial Board [1] needed a modification to cover the manuscripts being received on a very wide variety of topics. Considerable time is now needed to locate appropriate referees and to motivate them to undertake refereeing. This often causes a delay in taking decisions because some referees do not respond and some take longer time in submitting their comments. In the case of no response, after the allocated time and a few reminders, the assignment of the unresponsive referee has to be revoked and a fresh referee has to be located. Although effort is made that at least one of the referees is a member of the Editorial Board, search for an appropriate referee has become almost a continuous process as the quality of the papers published is very much dependent on the diligence of the referees. In most cases, the positive critique and comments of the referees during revision and re-revision enable a significant improvement after initial submissions. Although the acknowledgments for the services rendered by referees of the previous year appear in the first issue of the subsequent year, I take this opportunity to express our sincere thanks to the members of the Editorial Board and the referees for their very positive contribution and constructive suggestions and providing full opportunity to authors for improving the manuscripts. Thanks are also due to those who have opted to retire, for their very valuable contribution in providing a sound foundation for JMP, and I look forward to their continued patronage and guidance. Last but not the least, thanks are also due to authors, not only for choosing this journal for publishing their scientific work but especially for taking the comments of the referees and the editor in the right spirit.

On the front of SCI indexing, the progress has been limited. Although JMP is included in PubMed and PubMed Central (PMC) and of late in Wikipedia and has a satisfying projected impact factor, recognition under SCI indexing is yet to be achieved. The SCI indexing is understood to be judged by several parameters, but the most important parameter lacking in the case of JMP was pointed out to be inadequate citation of papers published in JMP by authors in other journals. In some cases, it appears that the authors do not cite their own relevant papers published in JMP while publishing in some other international journals, may be by oversight or in view of availability of other relevant publications in some more popular journals for citation. We now seek attention and cooperation of the authors to give due importance to JMP publications. For improving citation, we have also been advised by the publisher to bring out a few review papers authored by renowned experts in each issue and to start occasional publication of special issues on the focused topics. Both, the bringing out of special issues and the increase in the number of review papers, appear easily achievable through the cooperation of members of the Editorial Board and other experts. Theoretically, looking at the strength of the Editorial Board, if each member decides to write one review article once in 5 years, there would be about 30 review papers (spread over 5 years) for the 20 issues (enough for the forthcoming issues during the next 5 years at the rate of 4 issues per year). These review articles could be in addition to the regular submissions of reviews by the authors on their own. For special issues, it appears that the easiest way out is, the organizers of topical workshops and symposiums act as guest editors and manuscripts of review papers submitted by the speakers invited at the workshop / symposium be included. There could be many other ways and ideas of achieving these aims; therefore, with this editorial I request you to come forward to contribute to JMP in taking it to newer heights.

 
   References Top

1.Pradhan AS. JMP enters a new era. J Med Phys 2006;31:4.  Back to cited text no. 1
[PUBMED]  Medknow Journal  
2.Pradhan AS. A year of JMP online. J Med Phys 2007;32:1-2.  Back to cited text no. 2
  Medknow Journal  
3.Pradhan AS. Preparation of manuscript. J Med Phys 2010;35:1-2.  Back to cited text no. 3
[PUBMED]  Medknow Journal  
4.Author Institution Map. J Med Phys 2009;34:102.  Back to cited text no. 4
    



 
 
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