Publishing Science 101: advice on submitting and promoting your research paper
For research students, the first scientific paper is a rite of passage, marking the transition from being consumers of knowledge to generating new understanding. The rules, though, are tricky, complicated by recent upheavals such as Open Access arrangements, online only publishing and, lurking like a crocodile, the new threat of predatory publishers.
As an editor of a journal that includes many contributions from students as well as leading luminaries, the editorial board and I are keen to assist beginning authors on their journey. After noticing that certain issues recur, we’ve published overviews of the whole journey from writing to proofs to assist new authors.
Additionally, I’ve addressed particular themes in editorials to open the black box of editorial handling and allow authors to peer inside to see how decisions are made and how they can help the progress of their own papers. Topics include the common mistakes authors make in presentation or in misunderstanding what happens in production, fine details of the importance of accurate referencing and proofing, navigating problems with authorship, making decisions about Open Access, and promoting work once it is accepted. With those mysteries solved, authors can concentrate on their science and its wonderful stories.
Editor-in-Chief, Pacific Conservation Biology
Coral Reefs in the Pacific: Values, Threats and Solutions
In common with the rest of the world, the Pacific contends with human population growth, the challenge of sustainable management of natural resources and global issues of conservation and human welfare such as climate change. Uniquely, the Pacific was profoundly affected by European colonisation over a very short time, causing significant problems of overexploitation and introduction of exotic species alongside the human challenges of governance, sustainability and human rights in a post-colonial world.
The challenges for conservation in the Pacific are sharpest in managing coral reefs. The effects of anthropogenic climate change are already evident, as well as unregulated exploitation, land clearing or agricultural production on adjoining lands (Duffy 2011, Hutchings et al. 2013, Reside et al. 2017). One effective response is implementing marine reserves (Ceccarelli et al. 2011), with monitoring (Drumm et al. 2011, Norman et al. 2016) and encouragement of non-comsumptive industries such as nature-based tourism (Venables et al. 2016). Critical to success is understanding traditional management and natural resource use (Bao and Drew 2017) and integrating this knowledge into community-based management approaches (Albert et al. 2014, 2016). Communities can contribute to research and monitoring too through citizen science (Koss et al. 2009, Chin 2014).
In 2018, Pacific Conservation Biology celebrates 25 years of publication. It is also International Year of the Reef. In this Virtual Issue, we have collated key papers to aid the understanding of the value of, and threats to, coral reefs and their ecosystems, with hope that this research will contribute to a brighter future for our reefs.
Mike Van Keulen and Mike Calver
Pacific Biodiversity: Values, Threats and Solutions
Pacific Conservation Biology is dedicated to conservation in the Pacific region, which is defined broadly as the western Pacific (East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia and Oceania), the north Pacific (including Russia), and the islands of the central Pacific across to countries on the North American and South American continents bordering on the eastern Pacific. In common with the rest of the world, the Pacific must contend with human population growth, the challenge of sustainable management of natural resources, and global issues of conservation and human welfare. Uniquely, the Pacific has been profoundly affected by European colonisation over a very short time period, leading to significant problems of overexploitation and introduction of exotic species alongside the human challenges of governance, sustainability and human rights in a post-colonial world.
This virtual issue addresses conservation issues that are global in relevance but Pacific in context. Catastrophes can lead to extinctions of geographically limited species, as illustrated by the eruption of Bárcena Volcano off the Mexican coast (Brattstrom 2015). Conservation strategies need to be developed and implemented for endangered invertebrates (Brodie et al. 2016), vertebrates (Heise-Pavlov and Gillanders 2016, Pikacha et al. 2016, Kemp 2017), and flora (Huish et al. 2015), while population genetic and phylogenetic studies make important contributions to management (Boseto et al. 2016, Pacioni et al. 2017, Yabaki et al. 2016). Scientific and social disputes need to be resolved regarding the use of biodiversity surrogates and the management of conservation reserves (Chen et al. 2016, Jackson et al. 2016). Lastly, social, political and legal contexts influence conservation decisions (Clemann 2015). Through these papers and others, Pacific Conservation Biology addresses the ‘big questions’ in conservation, providing a forum for conservation scientists, natural resource managers and science communicators to explore the answers in a Pacific context.