Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Nature to launch a geoscience journal

Not sure if this has been blogged about yet.

I was pleasantly surprised this morning when I stumbled upon news that Nature is launching a specialized journal called Nature Geoscience in January 2008.

Here's their description of it:

Launching in 2008, Nature Geoscience will be a monthly multi-disciplinary journal aimed at bringing together the most significant research across the entire spectrum of the Earth Sciences. Published monthly, in print and online, the journal's content will reflect the core subject disciplines and other related areas with direct links to Earth Sciences.

In addition to primary research, Nature Geoscience will also publish review articles, news and views, research highlights about important papers published in other journals, commentaries, book reviews and correspondences.

Nature Geoscience will take an interdisciplinary, integrated and balanced approach to all areas of geoscience and foster the exchange of ideas between scientists involved in different disciplines. Nature Geoscience will be an invaluable resource for all researchers who are active in the process of discovering and developing an understanding of the Earth, environmental and planetary sciences.

I subscribe to the general Nature journal and enjoy it quite a bit...especially their review articles for the technical papers outside of my field -- like in genetics, quantum physics, astronomy, etc. But, there's typically only about one or two Earth science-related papers per issue (if that). I'm actually quite surprised it took this long for Nature to get this going considering how important the disciplines of Earth science are to the scientific community.

Will this be a good thing for the science? Any thoughts?


CJR said...

I suppose the question is, are geologists meant to submit their papers here instead of Nature, or is this a sort of consolation prize offered to those not deemed sexy enough for the flagship? I suspect the latter... in which case you have to wonder if the format restrictions are worth it.

Ron Schott said...

It's great that Nature is finally giving geology the prestige it rightly deserves. But for me, I'll judge Nature by whether they make this an open access journal or the same old tired closed access, high price model that makes science so inaccessible to the general public (and many professionals).

stefan said...

I can imagine that the Nature Geoscience might be similar to Nature Physics, which was launched in January 2006.

Similar to the geoscience, physics in the weekly Nature is represented also by about one or two papers per week, mostly from solid state and astrophysics, and the monthly journal just offers more space for interesting papers, and a bit longer review papers. I like especially the "News and Views" part, which is analogous to that in the weekly Nature, and gives great background information to the research papers.

In my opinion, Nature Physics is a very good and readable journal, and if Nature Geoscience will be similar, I might have a look at it from time to time and see if I can understand and learn something there...

Brian said...

Stefan...thanks for your perspective on Nature's physics journal...glad to hear it is worthwhile. Hopefully, the geoscience one will follow suit.

Nature Geoscience will have to compete with 'Geology' ... as it is in a similar format (i.e., short articles that get right to the point and have broad appeal across the discipline).

"Ain't From Around Here" said...

So I am a conspiracy therorist, but I would speculate the biosciences want Nature all to themselves and are kicking out the "riff-raff" to side journals to make room for genetic sequencing analyses..but then again maybe there is a Nature Biosciences that I'm not aware of?