Editor-in-Chief’s Introduction


Welcome to another new year for Journal of Advanced Nursing. I am sure that 2008 will prove to be another exciting and challenging year for JAN’s editorial and publishing teams and, for our authors and readers, I trust that JAN will meet (and exceed) all expectations.

Last year we published 254 papers and further increased JAN’s international standing in terms of diversity of authorship and spread of readership. JAN is now accessible in almost 6,000 libraries worldwide, and article downloads via Blackwell Synergy are close to 3 million per year. Importantly, JAN maintained its position among the top ten nursing journals worldwide, coming 8th (of 32) in last year’s ISSI ranking with an Impact Factor (IF) of 1·342 (a rise from 0·912 in the previous year). Despite the limitations of IF as a really meaningful measure of impact, particularly in relatively young research fields such as Nursing, IF continues to be regarded in some circles as a significant metric and, therefore, we recognise that JAN must continue to improve its rating. We are proud that JAN continues to hold the distinction of being the most frequently-cited nursing journal in the world.

Thank you to everyone who supports JAN and, in particular, to members of our Panel of Reviewers and our International Editorial Board.

Changes to the Editorial team

As of the start of this year, Debbie Kralik takes up the role of JAN’s Senior Editor, Brenda Roe will join as an Editor, and Jane Noyes will become Reviews Editor with particular responsibility for the new and developing Review Papers section within JAN. Christine Webb is stepping down as Executive Editor, but will continue as Technical Editor. And to Graham Williamson, our grateful thanks are extended for his contribution as Book Review Editor, and I welcome his continuing association with JAN as an Editorial Board member.

Debbie Kralik is based in Adelaide, South Australia, where she is Director of the Research Unit of the Royal District Nursing Service, and holds associated professorial positions at the University of Adelaide and the University of South Australia. As a highly active researcher, Debbie’s own work has been widely published in the international literature over the past decade, including regular contributions to JAN. Debbie first joined our team as an Editor in April 2003. In her new role, under the title of Senior Editor, Debbie now assumes the responsibility of co-ordinating and overseeing the editorial process for all manuscripts from submission to readiness for publication. This involves appointing an Editor for each paper, selecting reviewers and communicating decisions to authors and, during the process of revision and finalising papers, liaising closely with Editors and with me as Editor-in-Chief. Debbie already has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to JAN and we are delighted that she has agreed to become Senior Editor.

Brenda Roe has previously held appointment as a JAN Editor, and I am delighted that she is rejoining the team. Brenda is an experienced researcher, widely published, and with research interests that relate to the development of health care and health services for people with continuing care needs in the community, particularly older people and those with chronic conditions. Brenda is Professor of Health Research in the Evidence Based Practice Research Centre at Edge Hill University, England.

Christine Webb has been our Executive Editor for the past four years, and an Editor before that and, on behalf of all members of JAN’s editorial team and the Wiley-Blackwell publishing team, I extend thanks to Christine for her stalwart contribution to this journal. Christine has paved the way for Debbie to take over what is now a well-organized and highly efficient editorial system as a result of the unstinting effort she has put into JAN over the years. It was Christine who steered JAN’s transfer from a paper-based system of handling manuscripts to an electronic one. Now, using Manuscript Central, combined with email for all communications among editors and with reviewers and authors, we manage the editorial process electronically from start to finish. With support and effort from all Editors, Christine has achieved and maintained a turnaround target of 12 weeks to respond to authors following submission and review of their manuscripts, making JAN outstanding among its peers. But, for Christine, speed and efficiency have never been at the expense of thoroughness and quality. During her period as Executive Editor, we have introduced a succession of guidelines and requirements aimed at supporting authors and increasing the quality of JAN papers. We are not losing Christine’s skills entirely, at least not yet, because she has kindly agreed to continue to provide assistance to JAN as a Technical Editor.

New features

Two new features are being introduced this year – a new form of regular editorial (Editor’s Choice) and two new sub-sections in the Review Papers section of the journal (Review Summaries and Review Protocols).

Editor’s Choice: This will be a regular feature in each issue, starting in the next issue of JAN (61.2). Members of the team of Editors, alternating with me, will take turns to select one paper in each issue and highlight that paper in an editorial. This will be different, therefore, from the topic-based Editorials we have published in years past, usually in the form of Guest Editorials. Apart from highlighting JAN papers that strike us as particularly interesting, our idea is that this new editorial series will allow readers (and authors) to get to know JAN’s Editors.

Review Summaries and Review Protocols: Last year we rearranged the journal into three sections – Review Papers, Research Papers and Theoretical papers. In the Review Papers section, a sub-section is being added for the publication of Review Protocols. We are also adding a further sub-section under the title of Review Summaries. This initiative has been developed in partnership with the Joanna Briggs Institute under the leadership of Professor Alan Pearson, JBI’s Executive Director. Alongside publishing our own review papers in JAN, the aim of this initiative is to draw our readers’ attention to a wider circle of the nursing-relevant reviews that are being produced by some of the major review centres around the world. More is said about this development of JAN’s Review Papers section in the following Editor’s Note.

I hope that these new features will be of real value and interest to JAN’s readers. With regard to new developments in JAN, please do not hesitate to contact us if you would like to offer feedback. And we continue to provide space in the journal itself – in JANForum – for readers’ Letters to the Editor that are intended for publication, whether in the form of a direct response to a particular JAN paper or in the form of more general comment on an issue that is pertinent for JAN readers. You will find contact details for the Editorial Office and information about JANForum on our website.