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The Partnership of JSAP and IOP in Publishing APEX/JJAP: Toward a New Stage of Global Scientific Inf
TADASHI SHIBATA PROFESSOR EMER
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The Partnership of JSAP and IOP in Publishing APEX/JJAP: Toward a New Stage of Global Scientific- Information Transmission from Asia

Tadashi Shibata
Professor Emeritus, The University of Tokyo
Editor-in-Chief, JJAP APEX
The Japan Society of Applied Physics

On the 18th of July, 2013, at Makuhari Messe (Chiba, Japan), Prof. Konagai, president of the Japan Society of Applied Physics (JSAP), signed an agreement that started a publishing partnership with IOP Publishing. IOP Publishing is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Institute of Physics, headquartered in the UK (Fig. 1).

The first issue of the Japanese Journal of Applied Physics (JJAP) was published in July 1962 and it contained only 12 articles over 69 pages. The entire first volume of JJAP consisted of 68 articles over 366 pages. At present, the total number of articles published in JJAP Vol. 51 (2012) is 1733 over 8376 pages (746 articles in regular issues and 987 articles in special issues). The phenomenal growth of JJAP over the past half century has been fueled by research and development in modern science and technologies, such as semiconductor devices (including very large scale integration (VLSI) technologies, lasers, photonic devices, superconductors, and spintronics/magnetism), as well as by the activities in other diverse areas such as plasma physics and applied atomic/molecular physics. The recent progress in nanoscience and technologies, applied bioscience, and micro-electro mechanical systems (MEMS) has also promoted the growth of JJAP.

In January 2008, Applied Physics Express (APEX) was launched to meet the requests from many JJAP readers for the rapid and timely publication of highly novel articles with the potential for large impact in the community of applied physics. APEX was a successor to JJAP Express Letters. A new editorial board was organized for this new express journal. It soon acquired the reputation of a high-impact letter journal of high quality papers and the number of paper submissions has been continuously increasing, in particular from countries in the Asia Pacific region, as illustrated in Fig. 2. The total number of paper submissions in 2012 was about 1200, which almost doubled the submission numbers of 2008. In 2013, however, the 2012 submission numbers were quickly exceeded as the total submission numbers at the end of September 2013 was 1278 papers.

Fig. 1: Prof. Konagai, JSP president on the right and Dr. Olaf Ernst, IOP Publishing executive on the left signing the agreement (left); a photograph taken after the JSAP-IOP signing ceremony on publishing partnership on July 18, 2013, at Makuhari Messe, Chiba, Japan (right).

Fig. 2: Total number of papers submitted to APEX each year from 2008 to 2012.

Fig. 3 illustrates the submission statistics of 2012 in terms of countries. As shown on the left, 62% of submissions came from overseas. The breakdown of the overseas submissions is given on the right, showing 81% of those submissions coming from the Asia Pacific area. Namely, about 50% of the total submissions for APEX in 2012 were from Asia Pacific countries except for Japan. We believe that APEX has grown to become an express letter journal transmitting state-of-the-art and important scientific information from Asia to the world. In addition, with the partnership between JSAP and IOP Publishing regarding the on-line publishing of APEX/JJAP that is starting in January 2014, our journals have become truly international. Upon the start of this new publishing scheme, the cover designs of our journals have been renewed as demonstrated in Fig. 4.

Currently, the acceptance rate of APEX papers is about 30% and that of JJAP regular issue papers (including Rapid Communication and Brief Note papers) is about 54%. The acceptance rate of JJAP Special Issue papers is in the range of 60 to 80%, depending on individual special issues. Each Special Issue is connected to its respective adjoining international conference and the full length paper of each talk is reviewed by the editorial board specially organized for the conference. The papers submitted to each Special Issue have already gone through the refereeing process for acceptance for presentation at the conference. Therefore, the acceptance rate may change depending on the rigorousness of the initial paper selection for each conference.

The impact factors (IF) of APEX and JJAP are 2.731 and 1.067, respectively, and they have been fairly very stable for the last three years. The IF of APEX in the previous year was raised to 3.013 due to several high referenced papers in the area of green lasers.

Fig. 3: Statistics of paper submissions to APEX in 2012.

Currently, the editorial boards of APEX and JJAP are examining several avenues to further enhance the quality of the reviewing process, as it is quite essential for us to keep the high technical standard of APEX/JJAP with the ever increasing number of submissions.

It is a great pleasure to have increasing numbers of papers being submitted from countries in the Asia Pacific region and to be able to broadcast to the world some of the most advanced and new knowledge found in research, from Asia.

Fig. 4: New covers of APEX and JJAP from January 2014. (Please note that the volume number and issue subtitles are fictitious ones.)

 
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