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Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica greets its readers, authors, reviewers and publisher a happy and fruitful New Year 2003.

Psychiatric research is doing remarkable progress these years. The results from biological research are convincing. Neuroimaging has now overcome its basic research level, and is gradually becoming part of the daily routine in clinical work. Focussing on, e.g. adherence to treatment, therapeutic drug monitoring and continuity of care gives its obvious results, and psychotherapy has made itself part of modern evidence based psychiatry. At the Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica we have seen this positive development mirrored in the activities of the journal. During spring 2002 we received 18.8% more manuscripts than in the same period the year before, and generally spoken, the quality of the manuscripts is on the increase. As seen from Fig. 1, the Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica impact factor is on a steadily growing increase too: 2.107 in 2001 which is an increase of 18.5% compared with the previous year.

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Figure 1. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica Impact Factor 1993–2001.

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We thank every author who chooses Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica as the source for submission; every manuscript is thoroughly read and evaluated. Although we receive an increasing number of manuscripts, we have succeeded in keeping our publication rate above 20% almost every month.

It is our policy to give the authors the fastest possible response. The time from receipt of manuscript to a first qualified response (rejection or call for revision) varies between 7 and 9 weeks on average for various parts of the year.

We also thank the readers for being with us. We are aiming at bringing actual valuable research results of clinical relevance, useful in updating the basis for daily clinical work and contributing to the progress of psychiatric research. Our rapidly growing impact factor mirrors that articles published in Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica are read and quoted.

The reviewers are especially to be thanked. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica collaborates with more than 700 expert reviewers all over the world. At the editorial office we highly appreciate that colleagues without hesitation accept to let Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica benefit from their expertise. In the majority of the cases we receive a response of high quality within very few weeks after having asked for an assessment. From responses from authors we know that the work of the expert reviewers is highly appreciated – also when a manuscript regrettably cannot be published.

I should like to give a special ‘review’ to the members of the Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica board. Besides being advisors to the editor, the members of the board do a huge job to promote Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica in all aspects, and they make quite a lot of assessments. Therefore, the advisory board is continuously changing to release the present members after not too many years of hard work, and to invite younger colleagues with new ideas.

This year we again say goodbye to some of our board members. Already at the beginning of 2002 Matti Virkunnen excused himself. Later on also Per Vestergaard, Philip Lavori and Kristinn Tómasson have left the board. The editor thanks each of them warmly for the long-lasting and valuable contribution to the process of making Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica a modern, high quality scientific journal. The editorial office is pleased that Thomas Becker (Günzburg, Germany), Peter Williamson (London, Ontario, Canada), and Nassir Ghaemi (Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA) have accepted to join the board. Thomas Becker is an expert in public mental health research, Peter Williamson's area of expertise is neuroimaging and schizophrenia research, and Nassir Ghaemi is an expert in psychopharmacology.

The past year we have been introducing electronic handling of the manuscripts in the editorial office. The system is now fully operational, including submission of manuscripts by e-mail.

As an author in Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica your work is being read worldwide. and with the availability of an online version of the journal, readership is not only growing rapidly, it is also reaching out much farther than before. Many libraries and institutions that did not previously hold Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica in their collection, now can give their readers easy access to the journal through online licensing.

Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica is accessible through the online service Blackwell Synergy, which is a sophisticated, user-friendly and highly functional means of accessing journal content online. The key features of Blackwell Synergy are outlined in Table 1. Blackwell Synergy has been recently redesigned to improve its functionality, with features such as QuickLink taking readers directly to a chosen article and QuickSearch enabling readers to find related articles in Blackwell Synergy and Medline more easily. The user interface has been improved for individuals and library administrators, with a new subject-based hierarchy helping researchers find material in their discipline.

Table 1.  Features of Blackwell Synergy
• Content available as both full text HTML and PDF files
• Dynamic links at a variety of levels which are constantly updated, including:
 – Within articles (e.g. from text citation to reference list, figures or tables)
 – Within Blackwell Synergy to other journals in the service
 – Linking to and from abstracts in bibliographic databases, e.g. ISI, Medline
 – Linking to and from articles in other journals participating in CrossRef
• Powerful Boolean searching across all articles and journals within Synergy
• Free access to tables of contents and abstracts, free E-mail: alerts of the table of contents
• Free registration for individuals, linked to a personalized customer ‘home page’
• Ability to save and re-run searches, and to maintain lists of favorite articles

Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica has content going back to 2000, Volumes 101/102, available online. The total downloads of articles in 2002 (January–October) has reached an astonishing 32 907 or 108 articles per day, and the three most read articles are:

Temperament, character, and personality disorders: etiologic, diagnostic, treatment issues by D. M. Svrakic, S. Draganic, K. Hill, C. Bayon, T. R. Przybeck, C. R. Cloninger, Vol. 106, 3.

Post-traumatic stress disorder: a review of psychobiology and pharmacotherapy by I. Hageman, H. S. Andersen, M. B. Jørgensen, Vol. 104, 6.

SSRIs vs. TCAs in the treatment of panic disorder: a meta-analysis by A. Bakker, A. J. L. M. van Balkom, P. Spinhoven, Vol. 106, 3.

We at the editorial office, Birgitte Christiansen, Rasmus W. Licht and Povl Munk-Jørgensen thank everyone for the collaboration during 2002 and look forward to the continuation of the work in 2003.

Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica Povl Munk-Jørgensen, Editor