SCB Journals Consultant
Barriers and opportunities for SCB journals and advancing equity
The Society for Conservation Biology, a not-for-profit professional membership organization, is seeking proposals for a consultant to research into existing and prospective scientific journals to improve equity and impact.
About the Society for Conservation Biology
The Society for Conservation Biology (SCB) is a non-profit, 501(c)(3), organization dedicated to facilitating, promoting, and advancing the science and practice of biodiversity conservation on earth. It comprises regional Sections, over 30 local chapters, and eight topical working groups. SCB serves more than 4,000 members worldwide. It hosts the biennial International Congress for Conservation Biology (ICCB), the largest international meeting for conservation scientists with more than 1,500 attendees and a growing portfolio of regional meetings on the alternate years. SCB administers the David H. Smith Conservation Research Fellowship Program, a two-year postdoctoral fellowship for outstanding early career scientists who are successful at linking conservation science and application. SCB is governed by a Board of Governors, which includes representation from the Society's seven regional Sections, three Vice Presidents, and five officers. A staff of 8 supports these activities, and is primarily based in Washington, DC.
About the SCB Family of Scientific Journals
SCB owns and manages Conservation Biology (COBI) and Conservation Science and Practice (CSP) published in partnership with John Wiley & Sons Limited (Wiley). Conservation Letters, Pacific Conservation Biology, Biological Conservation, Biodiversity Science, and Current Conservation are also affiliated publications. Please review https://conbio.org/publications/ to gain a better understanding of journal influence, approach, and market segmentation.
The overarching work for the consultant will be to explore barriers and opportunities for SCB journals to continue their success and improve equity, including authors from underrepresented regions that are also biodiversity hotspots.
(1) Provide an assessment, quantitative to the extent possible, of the access authors from different global geographic regions have to publishing, reviewing and editorial leadership in SCB journals and if there are other biases in who currently participates.
(2) Assess the impact of current and marginal increases in cost on authors and equitable access.
(3) Examine the current and potential future impact of new competing journals.
(4) Assess the potential for us to grow our market share with existing journals, and the strategies that may achieve that including recommendations on new journal development.
(5) Based on the findings suggest revisions to the SCB journal strategic plans.
(6) Review structures/work that is performed by SCB Global Services and the SCB Publications Committee in light of what might be needed to grow journal impact and profitability.
- Research and recommend options to advance Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion to SCB journals
- Fee structures needed to facilitate both accessibility to publishing and accessibility to published manuscripts
- Language of publication (translations)
- Regional engagement
- Identify existing biases in participation in publishing and editorial positions.
- Help plan and take advantage of a workshop to be held at the International Congress for Conservation Biology in December 2021 on conservation science publishing from regions rich in biodiversity but with underrepresented scientists in global conservation journals.
- Assessment of new journal creation, including complete research and assessment of competing journal existence, focused on solving the EDI and submission mismatch between the global distributions of biodiversity and originating article submission regions, as well as the importance of social science to conservation. This output requires specific considerations of SCB’s Africa, Asia and LACA sections.
- Suggested approaches for the SCB Publications Committee and SCB Global Services staff to effectively engage in and meet the publications Strategic Vision and Plan.
To apply for consideration, please send a letter of interest describing your qualifications, experience in the scientific publications space, expertise with similar organizations, a brief summary of your proposed approach to the tasks listed above, and project rate for the primary consultant and any additional staff. Upon request, SCB will provide a copy of our mission, draft journal strategic plans, and organizational chart for use in preparing a proposal.
It is important to note that SCB must operate within parameters set by the Society’s bylaws and all laws pertaining to non-profit organizations registered in California. Additional organizational documents will be provided, as needed.
For full consideration, please submit your letter by email to Chief Financial Officer Warren Sander (firstname.lastname@example.org) by August 30, 2021