Managing Editor’s Report for 2021/22

September 22, 2022

The Managing Editor’s Report for 2021/2 is available here. Some highlights include

  • The 2-year impact factor rose to 5.059 in 2021. This compares to 3.894 in 2020, 2.885 in 2019 and 1.906 in 2018, indicating strong forward momentum.
    • Excluding self-citations, the impact factor has increased to 4.971, from 3.840 in 2020.
    • The 5-year impact factor has increased from 4.653 in 2020 to 5.071.
  • The number of submissions reached a record of 1,012, up from 978 in 2020-21.
    • At the start of 2017, we announced strict top-three standards, a stringent desk-rejection policy and an increase in submission fees to reduce the number of left-tail submissions (and allow us to start paying referees). Submissions indeed dropped from 923 in 2016/7 to 704 in 2018/9. 2021/2 is the second sucessive year that the RF exceeded the highest pre-2017 submission figures.
    • The acceptance rate is 7.88%, a significant increase from 4.66% last year and a testament to the increasingly-high quality of submissions. In total, 70 papers were accepted (rising from 40 in 2020-21) and 79 papers received R&Rs (rising from 72 last year).
    • In 2021-22, we published six issues, containing 44 papers in total. This included a Special Issue on China, published in May 2022, containing 8 papers.
  • The mean turnaround time fell very slightly from 44 to 43 days, and the median fell from 32 to 30.
  • One new metric that we have started to track is the regional breakdown of accepted papers. The proportion of papers from Asian authors rose from 2% in 2018/19 to 16% in 2020/21, and to 20% in 2021/22. For a paper with n coauthors, this calculation attributes 1/n papers to each author. For example, a paper with 2 US and 1 Asian author counts as 1/3 of a paper coauthored by an Asian author.