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The China bull in the publishing shop

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The China bull in the publishing shop
Benjamin Shaw, Global and China Director, Edanz Group Ltd

Most publishers find it a challenge taking advantage of the many opportunities presented as Asia grows into a scientific powerhouse. The need for new approaches is highlighted by examining the obstacles faced by Chinese authors in achieving publication success. Opportunities abound for establishing a competitive advantage in author outreach and services, and the author community will reward publishers who foster the development of a positive scientific culture. Adopting an author-centric approach is a sustainable long-term strategy, with Chinese authors and with those from other emerging markets.

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The China bull in the publishing shop

  1. 1. The China Bull in the Publishing Shop Benjamin Shaw, Global & China Director Based on: Shaw, B, The China bull in the publishing shop, Serials, 2011, 24(3), 238-244; doi: 10.1629/24238
  2. 2. The Publisher Bull in the China Shop Benjamin Shaw, Global & China Director Based on: Shaw, B, The China bull in the publishing shop, Serials, 2011, 24(3), 238-244; doi: 10.1629/24238
  3. 3. PublisherChallenges  Understanding local conditions  Building a network  Establishing a footprint in the market  Poor language quality  Increased volume for production  Insufficient number of peer reviewers  Author services & help desk  Publication ethics
  4. 4. A typicalChinese Author Meet Dr. Du ShundaTitle: Associate ProfessorInstitution: Liver Surgery Department,Peking Union Medical College HospitalPublication track record: More than 10 articles in Chinese Only one article in English as the first author, and two as co-author Four English articles currently under peer review
  5. 5. A typicalChinese Author Meet Dr. Du ShundaLanguage barriersGrants and incentives?Why publish? twowrite my manuscript in Chinese “I“Iusually grants, one is from the hospital for 50,000 have then getother is from theinto English. However, CNY; the it translated National Natural Science “If I want to be promoted from an associate Fund for 200,000 CNY. My colleagues in our hospital the translation often can not perfectly deliver have grants with amounts ranging from just 10,000 - the same meanings in Chinese.I must publish professor to a professor, then 20,000 CNY to tens of millions of yuan. sufficient articles and obtain grants. Getting If published not be supported byvisibility in my I write in will also give me a grant.”“If I write a case report, it will English myself then because of my field.” limited knowledge and skills in English writing,“Our hospital does currently have a policy rewarding articles publishedin SCI journals. However, I satisfactorily express the key last; I cannot am not sure how long this policy willmaybe it will bemessages and uniqueness of my article.” canceled next year.”
  6. 6. AuthorChallenges Culture / Experience
  7. 7. AuthorChallenges Journal Selection
  8. 8. AuthorChallenges Journal SelectionHow do you choose a journal? Publication goals “I will list all the professional journals on hepatology firstly, article I hope to submit to “When I write an ranking them from top to bottomjournal with an IF ofreject or 1.0, not an SCI by IF. If all of them at least are which suitableuseful for me.” I will seek a more will be for my article, comprehensive journal that is still related with hepatology.”
  9. 9. AuthorChallenges Language Language barriers
  10. 10. PublisherAdaptations Be on the ground Be aware of how your brand is perceived Meet people face-to-face Make use of journal editors as goodwill ambassadors Team up with a Chinese partner journal or society
  11. 11. Publisher Adaptations Reach out Communicate in Chinese Make use of online platforms such as ScienceNet and DXY Use Chinese social media channels such as Weibo Monitor your online reputation (with assistance from Google Translate)
  12. 12. PublisherAdaptations Promote a positive cultureDouble-edged sword of the pressure to publish “The pressure to publish unavoidably leads to improper ethics. But on the other hand, the pressure is also what is encouraging Chinese authors to publish in the first place.” Promote a positive culture  Educate authors about why they should publish  Training and educational materials are greatly appreciated  Connect Chinese authors to their peers globally  Educate authors to look beyond the Impact Factor  Learning is a two-way street - don’t forget to listen
  13. 13. PublisherAdaptations How does Open Access fit in?  Chinese authors are aware of OA but publishers have a long way to go in educating them  Price sensitivity might be a barrier APCs Misconceptions Perceived advantages “I think 1,000 - 10,000 CNY is acceptable; but if the publication fee“OA journals have no we willMaybe they willreachsome exceeds 20,000 CNY SCI OA turn to other journals. If there is “Articles published in IF. journals may have a wider years later, but not now. However, since they have no SCI IF, another SCI journal that asks for less or even no publication fee, I audience.” may turn tobasically useless for us.” they are that journal because 20,000 yuan is roughly equal to 2 - 3 months of my salary, which is really too expensive for me.”
  14. 14. PublisherAdaptations Focus on the value of peer review Quality and consistency Speed review comments may vary among journals. For “The criteria of example, I submitted an articlebe faster. For example, one of my “I wish peer review could to [a famous US medical journal], and one month later they gave me a for 4 months, which was articles underwent peer review reply stating that my article was not fit too the journal. The editor did not provide any helpful really for long.” comments, they just said it was "unfit”.  Must consistently be professional, polite and helpful  Educate authors about the value of peer review  Encourage more authors to participate as reviewers
  15. 15. Publisher Make the process easierAdaptations for authors Clearly and realistically advise Clearly explain how submissions Consider authorspeer review Use language screening but Re-invent how rate yousite Have translating journals, your Better differentiate re-submit Encourage pre-submission ifMakewill be should & scope the author evaluated, Automate formatting a video aims beware of Chinese to decision commentsits timelines and limitations e.g., by e.g., supportingare structured speedenquiries required, onclearly stating convenience into evidence or find a different journal how novelty is determined
  16. 16. What publishers are already doing
  17. 17. What Edanz is doing2.4. VisitandEnglish sample text3. Filter journal websites Narrow options 1. Insert refine toauthor’s abstract, short description, key phrases, make final decisionmatchabstract from similar paper or analysis Journal basic journalRevise sample text information Advisorto refine resultsImpact Factor similar previouspublication frequency publicationsOA options
  18. 18. www.edanzediting.com/STM-China Download and further reading @JournalAdvisor Follow us on Twitterbshaw@edanzgroup.com Contact me

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