What Makes the Best Medical Ethics Journal? A North American Perspective
Journal of Medical Ethics 2005 October; 31(10): 591-597
BACKGROUND: There currently exist no data on the factors that contribute to determining why medical ethicists choose to review for and submit articles to medical ethics journals. OBJECTIVE: To establish which factors contribute to medical ethicists reviewing articles for or submitting them to medical ethics journals by consulting those who are active in this capacity. METHODS: Medical ethicists were surveyed to determine their incentives and disincentives for reviewing articles for or submitting them to medical ethics journals. Survey participants were chosen based on a review of the academic and research record of medical ethicists working in North America in higher education institutions. RESULTS: The most frequent incentives to reviewing journal articles were: an opportunity to contribute to the field/profession, the good reputation of the journal, the high impact factor of the journal, and to keep up to date on current research. The most frequent disincentives to reviewing journal articles were: time constraints due to academic commitments, the poor reputation of the journal, and time constraints caused by other editorial commitments (for example, reviewing for other journals/publishers). The most important incentives to submitting journal articles were: the good reputation of the journal, the quality of scholarship previously published in the journal, the impact factor of the journal, and a fast turn-around from acceptance to publication. The most important disincentives to submitting journal articles were: the poor reputation of the journal, the poor quality of work previously published in the journal, and a slow turn-around from acceptance to publication. CONCLUSION: A series of factors that medical ethics journals should strive to employ to encourage reviewing and submission of articles are recommended.
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