Thursday, September 08, 2005


From Jamais Cascio,

"Although a good case can be made for the idea that science has an important role to play in the process of global development and the abolition of poverty, scientific journals quite often focus upon subjects and research of greater interest to the developed world than to the developing regions. To an extent, this is not at all surprising: the bulk of the research happens in the West and in Japan, and scientists do tend to work on issues that are important and interesting to them. Yet there are large numbers of working scientists in the developing world, too; how can their voices be better heard?

That's the goal of AuthorAid (PDF), a proposal from the editors of the Journal of Public Health Policy (JPHP), with the backing of the Canadian Coalition for Global Health Research and the Council of Science Editors' (CSE) Task Force on Science Journals, Poverty, and Human Development."

The originators of the idea have written about it at SciDevNet.

"A global 'publishing gap' condemns efforts at reducing poverty to suffer from the shortsightedness of the rich. This is because the health and science researchers closest to poverty and poor health in the developing world are the least likely to publish their work and ideas in the academic journals that influence policymakers.

Various proposals to address this problem have been made. We would like to suggest an additional strategy, which would link developing-world authors with promising work to voluntary editor/scientist mentors anywhere in the world, on a manuscript-by-manuscript basis.

The mentors could then help the authors prepare submissions that science and policy journals will accept and publish."


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