Max Reuter, Editor-in-Chief at JEB, Professor at University College London
We are happy to introduce JEB’s new editorial board! Following the announcement of the planned reorganisation last summer, Managing Editor Nicki Cook and I had been busy recruiting editors for the new board over the autumn and winter. This was a long and complex process, including the multi-dimensional puzzle of selecting board members according to expertise and diversity and a significant amount of work behind the scenes to adjust and update the manuscript handling workflows. But we are happy (and relieved) to finally be able to present our Handling and Associate Editors to you, our reader- and authorship, and welcome them here.
The main motivation for reorganising our editorial structure was to adapt JEB to the increasing diversification and sophistication of contemporary evolutionary biology. Research in our field is becoming ever broader, both in terms of the questions we ask and the technologies and approaches we use. To continue to provide peer review—and hence content—of the highest quality, JEB’s editorial practices need to match this diversification. A bigger board and the range of expertise among our Associate Editors will allow us to do so.
But diversification is not limited to the research itself, the evolution community has also become broader in many other ways. Our second (but by no means secondary) goal has therefore been to make JEB’s editorial board more diverse and representative of the entire research community. Our senior editors (Editor-in-Chief, Handling Editors, Commissioning Editor and Data Editor) now includes researchers from the UK, US, Australia, Switzerland, Mexico and the Netherlands and we have gender parity among the new Handling Editors. For the board of Associate Editors too we have made large strides towards being representative of the diversity of the field. We have significantly increased the representation of women among our editors (from 4:11 among the previous board of Deciding Editors to 16:23 among the new AEs) and now have editors from 17 countries, including Austria, Belgium, Brazil, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK and the US.
We are excited to see our new board in action and hope these changes will get a positive reception in the community. Please share your comments and thoughts, we value them. Meanwhile, we will continue our work. This will include further additions to fill in gaps and to make small adjustments to the balance between our submissions and the expertise within the board. More importantly though, we are yet to recruit a group of junior AEs and their mentors to provide a pathway to grow into editorial roles.
While we hope that the new board will improve the way we work, our mission to publish quality research in evolutionary biology remains unchanged. Besides welcoming our new editors, I would therefore like to thank our outgoing board of Deciding Editors. Their hard work is the foundation of JEB’s reputation as one of the leading journals in our field and many of them will provide valuable continuity as members of the new board. Thank you!