For many months I have been troubled by the thought of a near-perfect AGU, deriving my inspiration from the AIP (consisting of eight big scientific societies), which has successfully organized journals in a very information-efficient manner and is able to avoid duplication in its four-dozenodd publications. This is a great value to members who wish to subscribe to individual journals for personal use.
The recent Publications Committee letter (Eos, 62, 19, 489) inquiring whether AGU journals should be further split up along our disciplinary lines provided the stimulus for this note. I feel that there is a lot of publication overlap between AGU and AMS. JGR-Space Physics, and JGR-Oceans and Atmospheres duplicate to some extent the coverage of the Journal of Atmospheric Sciences, the Monthly Weather Review, and the Journal of Physical Oceanography. Similarly there is overlap between the third section of JGR and Geophysics, the bulletin of the Society of Exploration Geophysicists. Could there not be a federation of these societies, with one of its primary tasks to reorganize journal publication, cutting down, but not necessarily eliminating, duplication along the AIP lines? I suspect there are a number of other societies that should be included in such a federation.