Journal Editors as Mediators between Authors, Reviewers and Readers

Journal Editors as Mediators between Authors, Reviewers and Readers
‘Mediator’ may seem to some an odd term to apply to journal editors. After all, from the perspective of many scholarly authors, acquisitions editors are in control, determining whether the papers they have worked so hard to produce are published or not. It is true that such decisions do rest with the editors of academic and scientific journals, but they are decisions that are far from straightforward in practice. Indeed, working with the concerns of authors, reviewers and readers in mind to prepare articles for successful publication often involves acts of mediation a diplomat might be proud to achieve.
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For one, a journal editor acts as a mediator between the authors who submit their work for publication and the experts who peer review those papers. From a distance, the process may seem simple: the editor chooses a reviewer and sends the paper; the reviewer accepts the offer and prepares the review report on time; suggestions are sent on to the author who happily complies with effective revisions; the reviewer takes a second look, and the editor accepts the revised paper for publication. However, the process rarely proceeds so smoothly. A great deal of time might be dedicated to selecting peer reviewers and cajoling review reports from them on time only to discover that those reports will require adjustments. Perhaps, for instance, the reviewer has pointed out a weakness or flaw in the research, and the criticism is valid, but the language in which it is expressed demonstrates that the reviewer has also failed to maintain the objectivity necessary for a high-quality review. In such a situation, the editor may need to step in as a mediator and reword the comments so that the problem will be highlighted without offending the author. Editors perform many such acts to ensure that the revisions necessary for improving articles and rendering them publishable are successful, and remember that some papers go through several stages of review and revision.

This focus on the quality of the articles published in an academic or scientific journal must always be the editor’s primary concern because he or she is also a mediator between the authors who submit their writing for consideration and the scholars who read and cite the journal. Each acquisitions editor has a responsibility to publish research that fits the scope and aims of his or her journal, meets the guidelines provided to ensure clear and consistent presentation throughout the journal and achieves a high scholarly standard for the discipline and subject. Failing in these areas means failing the journal’s readers and compromising its scholarly reputation, and the most likely result will be fewer readers and lower citation counts. Keeping these facts in mind when faced with editors’ requests for revisions can help authors understand that the editors are acting as mediators and helping them present their research as effectively as possible to the anticipated readers. When considered in this light, such assistance is among the most valuable gifts an academic or scientific author can receive.

Indeed, when the difficulties of the mediation expected of journal editors are understood, patience and gratitude seem the most appropriate sentiments for authors to share with them. Remember, then, to thank that beleaguered editor who is working so hard to strike a delicate balance so that your writing can be published and well received by your scholarly community.

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At we pride ourselves on our large and extremely dedicated team of academic and scientific professionals. Our proofreaders and editors are highly educated native speakers of English and their areas of specialisation range so widely that we are able to help our clients improve and perfect all kinds of research manuscripts for successful publication. Many members of our team work predominantly on articles intended for publication in scholarly journals, ensuring that formatting and references conform to author guidelines with precision and correcting grammar, punctuation, spelling and simple typing errors so that our customers are able to report their research in the clear and accurate ways required to impress acquisitions editors and earn publication.

Our editing services for authors of scientific papers and books are especially popular, but we have the experience and expertise to proofread and edit books in every scholarly discipline as well as beyond them, and some of our carefully trained proofreaders and editors work exclusively on helping students improve the formatting and language of their theses and dissertations. Whether you are preparing a conference paper for presentation or publicationpolishing a professional report to share with your colleagues, or tackling the daunting task of editing and perfecting any kind of academic or scientific document, a qualified member of our expert team can provide invaluable assistance and give you greater confidence in your written work. Our translation services for scientific and academic documents have also proven immensely helpful for many of our international clients.

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