Perspectives Online

Heatwole-edited journal achieves high ranking

A journal edited on the N.C. State University campus has just made the big ten among zoological journals. Oxford Journals' Integrative and Comparative Biology (ICB), (formerly American Zoologist) now ranks in 9th place out of 125, reports Dr. Harold Heatwole, zoology professor in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, edits the journal with assistance from Nancy Cochran, retired student services manager in the CALS Department of Zoology (now Biology).

“Since I began editing that journal in January 2006, with Nancy Cochran as assistant editor, its ranking has steadily risen,” said Heatwole.

“We publish six issues per year, and, unlike most journals, each issue is thematically arranged around 1 to 3 topics. These usually arise from symposia and constitute comprehensive reviews as well as future directives,” he said.

“We attempt to reach a higher standard of scholarship and writing than is characteristic of most scientific journals.”

Heatwole said that recently the National Science Foundation asked for a series of papers on the “grand challenges" facing organismal biology. “They plan to use these as guidelines for funding,” he said. “We will have one of those papers in each of the six issues of 2009.”

ICB includes peer-reviewed symposia that provide current syntheses of subjects in biology by the field's top scientists. It also publishes book reviews, reports and special bulletins.