Gedanken zur Situation biologischer Zeitschriften in Europa
Steffan, A. Wilhelm
There exist 2 groups of biological journals in Europe: institutionally owned ones (IOJ), published by regional or national scientific societies, museums or other institutes; and institutionally independent ones (IIJ), owned by a publishing house, but mainly run by and the responsibility of a distinct group of specialist scientists. IOJ are as a rule financed through membership fees or other private and public sources; they serve the purpose of the particular institution concerned as a form of representation and a means of exchanging literature. They limit the acceptance of contributions to institute members, without reference to an outside neutral referee as a quality comparison. IIJ, on the other hand, are published with an eye on the market economy: the financial returns, dependent upon the number of copies printed and sold, either bring in a profit for the publisher, or at least cover production costs; or they are subsidised in a hidden manner by the publishers compound calculations and above all by the unsalaried editorial work contributed by the scientific editors and specialist referees. The journals of this second category ultimately serve the goals of scientific information; the acceptance of offered contributions is dependent upon the decision of neutral referees who monitor the scientific quality and presentation of typescripts.