The constitution of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ACVIM) states that a primary objective of the college is: “encouraging research and other contributions to knowledge relating to diagnosis, therapy, prevention and control of animal diseases, and promoting communication and dissemination of this knowledge.” The ACVIM began publishing the Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine in January 1987 as a way to meet this objective.
The current issue of the Journal (Volume 22 #1) is the first one to be published by Wiley-Blackwell, and the changes go deeper than a new cover. The Journal no longer is a self-published journal printed by Allen Press but a recent addition to a stable of veterinary journals published by Wiley-Blackwell and available on-line as part of Synergy. The Journal has had a number of publishers or printers over its first 20 years–from the early days with Lippincott, to W.B. Saunders, then Allen Press, and now Wiley-Blackwell. Each of our previous partners has served the Journal and its parent organization, the ACVIM, well. Our need to produce a Journal of international scope and premier quality as well as our continuing need to steward the resources of the ACVIM wisely has led us to this recent change.
Our overarching goal is that the Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine be recognized as the pre-eminent journal dedicated to publishing high quality, clinically relevant information pertinent to the practice of veterinary internal medicine. To achieve this goal the Journal must publish scientifically valid papers of high technical quality in a timely fashion.
The Journal has grown and matured dramatically in its past 10 years with Allen Press. The Journal published 58 citable articles in 1997 and had an impact factor of 1.585. All manuscript processing was done using hard copy, and the Journal was only available in paper format. Ruth Green was our editorial assistant in the Denver office and there were 7 Associate Editors, none of whom resided outside of the United States. In 2006, we published 206 citable articles, and our 2006 impact factor was 1.683. Manuscripts now are processed electronically, including transmittal of edited copy and galley proofs. This work flow facilitates production and shortens the time from submission to publication. The Journal is available in electronic format and authors have the opportunity to include short video clips useful for demonstrating gait disturbances or echocardiographic abnormalities. Laura Brashear currently is the Publications Manager for the Journal, and there are 12 Associate Editors, 3 of whom reside in Europe. Two of our associate editors provide guidance about the statistical methods used by authors. One co-editor-in-chief (KWH) resides outside of the United States. The Journal is not only the official journal of the ACVIM, but also of the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine, the European College of Veterinary Neurology, and the European College of Equine Internal Medicine. We believe the Journal is rising to the top of its field and has attained international standing.
We anticipate the Journal will continue to grow over the next decade, and we believe it is on target to become the premier veterinary clinical journal and first choice of authors seeking to publish studies that have the potential to impact the practice of veterinary internal medicine. Our success will be judged not only by impact factor and ranking relative to other veterinary journals, but also in terms of the quality and breadth of the articles published, number of manuscripts submitted, geographic diversity of submissions, and numbers of subscribers worldwide. Our goals will be achieved by continued attention to efficient manuscript handling and author satisfaction; provision of a review process that is prompt, rigorous, and fair; publication of a product that is technically superior in both paper and electronic formats; and, vigorous promotion of the Journal to potential authors, subscribers, and advertisers.
We have the raw materials to achieve these aims: an excellent Publications Manager and editorial board, a consistently supportive ACVIM Board of Regents, and growing numbers of manuscript submissions. At our current submission rate we anticipate that approximately 350 manuscripts will be submitted by the end of 2007. Changes however are needed to insure timely manuscript handling, publication quality, and globalization of the Journal in terms of authors and readers. We have now instituted a number of these changes, and, with publication of the Journal by Wiley-Blackwell, we are poised to achieve our overarching goal. The new publishing contract will increase the visibility of the Journal as a result of increased consortia sales and subscriptions, and will permit production of a Journal featuring more consistently high technical quality. Continued use of electronic manuscript management will further improve manuscript handling, contribute substantially to author satisfaction, and reduce the costs associated with moving hard copies of manuscripts among editors, editorial office, and authors.
It is exciting to be associated with the Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine when it is entering a phase in its development during which we anticipate it will become the premier clinical veterinary journal in the world and a showcase for the mission of the ACVIM.