Most journals operate under the guidance of an editorial board, providing expert advice on content, attracting new authors and encouraging submissions.
The editorial board, or (editorial) advisory board, is a team of experts in the journal's field. Editorial board members:
- Review submitted manuscripts.
- Advise on journal policy and scope.
- Identify topics for special issues, which they may guest edit.
- Attract new authors and submissions.
- Act as advisers in the case of complex publishing ethics allegations.
- Ideally submit some of their own work for consideration by the journal.
Selecting editorial board members
Editorial board members are selected by the journal’s editor(s), with input from the publisher. Editorial boards generally undergo a complete revision every two or three years, with members joining, stepping down or continuing for another term. Changes also occur in the interim, for example if a member resigns.
A journal’s editorial board can affect its quality, so editors should consider the following:
- The location of board members should represent the reach of the journal
- Board members' expertise should represent the journal's scope
- Representatives should be appointed from key research institutes
- Former Guest Editors of special issues, and authors of key reviews, and top reviewers may be suitable
- Existing board members may have suggestions for new members