The January 2013 issue of Obesity inaugurates a new chapter in the history of the Journal as several changes are occurring simultaneously. First, our new publisher, Wiley, with Jo Wixon as Senior Editor, brings a commitment to publish our work efficiently and to market it to achieve a wider readership. Wiley will improve the reader experience with an anywhere article format to meet the screen demands of newer devices. The Wiley Online Library homepage will improve branding and highlight our content. We can build virtual issues around chosen themes and promote the journal across readership in Endocrinology, Nutrition and Dietetics, Cardiology, Surgery, and others.
Second, we hope to bring new energy as Editor-in-Chief (Eric Ravussin) and Associate Editor-in-Chief (Donna Ryan). We have mapped out an ambitious strategy to bring Obesity to the next tier, to be a leading specialty journal sought after because of its quality and its speed from submission to publication. This is the official journal of The Obesity Society and we want Society members to be proud of Obesity. We will increase readership and citations. We want all submitting authors to consider that we have given a careful and speedy review and that the time to publication is as short as possible. We want Obesity to be the first journal that an author considers for publishing a discovery of interest to the obesity research community. Society members should scan Obesity every month for the latest developments in the field.
We are aided in our ambitious goals by some experienced Associate Editors who are staying on (David Allison, Marc Reitman, and Jacqueline Stephens) and a cadre of young and enthusiastic Associate Editors (David Cummings, Vishwa Dixit, Gary Foster, Paul Franks, Bret Goodpaster, Ruth Loos, Christopher Morrison, Leanne Redman, Melinda Sothern, and Holly Wyatt).
Among the changes are a simplification of section headings to just four (Obesity Biology and Integrated Physiology; Clinical Trials: Behavior, Pharmacotherapy, Devices, Surgery; Pediatric Obesity; and Epidemiology/Genetics). We are limiting the word count for original articles to 3,500 words, but we will have more Invited Reviews (5,000 words) and Perspectives (1,000 words). We are designating a format, Brief Cutting-Edge Reports, for excellent and novel findings that can be reported in 1,500 words. We will work with authors to produce more press releases so as to increase the impact of the Journal in the press.
Obesity has made remarkable progress since its founding almost two decades ago as Obesity Research, under Editor-in-Chief George Bray. Able leadership, including Xavier Pi Sunyer, Barbara Corkey, and Richard Bergman, has pushed the journal to an Impact Factor of 4.284 (ISI Journal Citation Reports Ranking 2011). Obesity ranks 9/72 among Nutrition and Dietetics journals and 31/121 of Endocrine and Metabolism journals. So, the Editors-in-Chief stand on the shoulders of some talented and hardworking predecessors in the ambition to expand the scope of the journal.
With our Managing Editor, Hedy Ross, and Editorial Assistants, Deborah Rice and Lorrie Brescia, we have already begun to implement some procedures to reduce a large backlog and to speed time to decision for submissions and to publication for accepted papers. We are turning the pages on the “old” journal and are ready to embark on a new chapter for Obesity. As with starting any new chapter, we have learned from what came before and are anxious to see what unfolds on the new pages. However, of course, we need your expert help by submitting your best work to Obesity.