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Botanical Sciences

On-line version ISSN 2007-4476Print version ISSN 2007-4298

Bot. sci vol.95 n.3 México Jul./Sep. 2017


Editorial Note

A Farewell from the Editor

Juan Núñez-Farfán

For two years I had the honour of being the Editor-in-Chief of Botanical Sciences. During this time, I have had the opportunity to execute changes in our journal aimed to improve the quality and type (only research and review papers) of the published articles, editorial norms, etc. We paid special attention in the selection of topics of manuscripts and the quality of data, given priority to those that addressed research of general interest in the realm of plant sciences, or those that presented novel information and/or questions, hypotheses of relevance and current importance. Changes happen no without controversy. I hope time can judge these positively.

Nowadays, Botanical Sciences publishes papers exclusively in English language. This change aims to reach a broader international authorship and readership; a by-product of its success will translate in a higher impact. Today, the proportion of reviewers and authors from countries other than Mexico has increased.

Botanical Sciences is a peer-review, open-access, journal published under a Creative Commons -Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International license, which allows authors to distribute their papers freely.

An editor has to make a choice among hundreds of manuscripts and cannot accept more than roughly a 30% of them. Decisions are taken based on a variety of perspectives, reviews, and topics provided by reviewers and Subject Editors. Particularly, I rejected manuscripts that lacked a good scientific quality or those that did not fit within the journal’s scope. I have always taken into account the opinion of reviewers. We owe to them much of what Botanical Sciences is today.

My team and I published ten issues: three in 2015, four in 2016 and three so far in 2017. Considering that I inherited 84 manuscripts, already accepted by the previous editor, and 34 in the review process, the works accepted under my term began to be published until September 2016.

In order to deliver all the delayed papers we had to publish an average of 19 articles per issue. Currently, an average of 16 articles are published per issue. Thanks to this effort, the publication time, that was taking more than a year, has been reduced to a maximum of six months during the last year.

To reduce printing costs Botanical Sciences is nowadays published online only. We charge, however, a very low publication cost per article ($100-150 US Dollars), perhaps the lowest for an open-access journal. This money barely covers the expenses incurred in the web page maintenance, design, and typesetting. All scientists in the editorial board work for Botanical Sciences gratis. Botanical Sciences do not possess an office, equipment, personnel, etc. We work in our personal computer.

The end of a cycle always triggers some sadness and personal emotion, but also certainty and hope for what is coming. I am sure that Botanical Sciences will expand its influence, not only in Mexico but overseas. I hope my efforts will be reflected in a climbing up in ranking lists and impact factors, and in readers, downloads, and citations from 2018 onwards.

I want to take the chance to say “thank you” to a large group of people: To you—the readers and authors—and my editorial team for all the support that they have given to me over these two years. Specially, I want to thank our editorial assistants: Hugo Tovar, Dalila Fragoso Tejas and Violeta Patiño, and to José Manuel Hernández V., our design and typesetting executive. I want to thank Dr. Mariana Apolinar and Dr. Rosalinda López Tapia for their assistantship in financial issues and logistics.

I hope you can forgive my lack of modesty if I assure you that the best decision I have taken was to create and name, Dr. Graciela García-Guzmán as the Managing Editor of Botanical Sciences. Being herself a scientist, I have always received from her advice on scientific topics and, of course, to take decisions on manuscripts. Much of Botanical Sciences’ success is owed to Dr. García-Guzmán. Hence, I must take the opportunity to express my deep appreciation to Graciela for all her wise help in this, and in many other, academic endeavours that we have pursued. Thanks!

Dr. Luis E. Eguiarte acted as Editor for Reviews, a new academic profile that I created in the Editorial board. Luis has laid the bases of this project aimed to produce topic papers on plant sciences. Some of his selections just begin to appear. In spite I know Luis for more than 30 years, still he surprised me with his editorial, relentlessly work. Besides being Editor for Reviews, he acted as subject editor and/or reviewer of many contributions, with an astonishing speed and quality in his work. For his service to Botanical Sciences, my appreciation to Luis.

I also thank the Subject Editors of Botanical Sciences. Their work has been decisive in this construction phase of our journal. I hope many of you will continue this goal.

Finally, I wish Dr. Salvador Arias and the new editorial team all the best. I am certain that Botanical Sciences will continue to further flourish in its role as the flagship journal of the Sociedad Botánica de México.

Creative Commons License This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License