SERIES OF OPEN LETTERS: SIXTH LETTER
We are now into summer 2015 and a lot has happened since our last open letter. We have attended many conferences and meetings including the International Congress of Mathematicians in Seoul last August, the Joint Mathematical Meetings in San Antonio in January, the ISI World Congress in Rio de Janeiro in July and the Joint Statistical Meetings in Seattle this August. We are starting to look towards the rest of this year’s meetings and a full list of the meetings we are due to attend is always on our webpage. We look forward to seeing you at these meetings if you are attending.
The community has undoubtedly been looking to the future and last year we participated in two panel sessions around the topic “The Future of Mathematics Publishing”. Both of these sessions provided interesting ideas and feedback and have stressed to us the value of engaging constructively with the community and we will continue to do this. These letters are just one of the ways we try to keep the community informed of what we are doing.
Elsevier Mathematical Sciences Sponsorship Fund 2015
Our congratulations go to the winners of the Mathematical Sciences Sponsorship Fund 2015. This is the first year of the fund which was started to support events and activities that benefit individuals and groups within the mathematical sciences. Applications were invited for the first year of the fund and attracted a total of 36 entries.
Eight successful applicants have been awarded funds ranging from US$700 to US$5,000 for their respective projects. We would like to thank all the applicants for taking the time to apply and we wish the winners success in their projects.
More information on each of the winners and their reason for requesting funding is available here.
For those of you inspired to apply for 2016 funding we expect to launch the 2016 form during late summer. In the meantime the 2015 application form is available to give you an idea of how the fund and application process operate.
Elsevier extends feed to ZentralblattMATH to include all backfiles
Further to the current arranged feed to FIZKarlsruhe for ZentralblattMATH, we have just agreed to extend the feed to include backfiles going back to Volume 1/Issue 1 (or the earliest available material in our electronic system).
This will allow for indexing of our whole archive, much of which is available for free as part of our Open Archive in mathematics.
We recognize referees are critical to our journals and we thank referees, wherever we meet them, for the contribution they make to the improvement and integrity of the scientific record. Indeed we hosted a reception at JMM in San Antonio for referees to allow us to meet, thank them and listen to feedback.
Elsevier has several initiatives across the company to recognize referees such as 30 days free Scopus access and the new Reviewer Recognition Platform.
As part of our pledge to increase Elsevier’s value to the mathematical sciences community, we continue to benchmark ourselves against other publishers and to see whether we are making progress against our original pledge of reaching a list price of US$11 per published article. With this in mind we expect our 2016 prices to be very similar to our 2015 prices with an overall increase in the mathematics group of less than 1%. A full list of 2016 prices is available here.
Inaugural winner of the Mary Ellen Rudin Award claims to have solved problem in continuum theory
Mathematicians Logan Hoehn of Nippissing University and Lex Oversteegen of the University of Alabama at Birmingham, claimed to have solved a 90-year old problem in continuum theory, one of the largest problems in topology.
The problem was first described in 1920 in the first volume of the journal Fundamenta Mathematicae, when Knaster and Kuratowski asked whether the circle is the only (non-degenerate) homogeneous plane continuum. This question was answered by Bing in the negative: he showed in 1948 that the pseudo-arc is a counterexample. A third homogeneous plane continuum, called the circle of pseudo-arcs, was then constructed by Bing and Jones in 1959. Subsequently, many mathematicians studied the question whether these three are the only (non-degenerate) homogeneous plane continua. This has now been confirmed by Hoehn and Oversteegen. Their basic new ingredient is the following result: the pseudo-arc is, up to homeomorphism, the only non-degenerate continuum that is hereditarily indecomposable and has span zero.
Hoehn, the inaugural winner of the Mary Ellen Rudin Award for a young researcher, received funding through the award which subsequently facilitated the collaboration with Oversteegen during Spring and Summer of 2014.
Changes in the mathematics team
Chiara Farinelli joined us in January as the new Mathematics & Statistics Publisher in journals. Those of you working in the applied mathematics and statistics fields will see her at the European Statistics meeting, ISI Congress and JSM in Seattle.
Laura Schmidt, the Publisher for Mathematics 2, is spending the second half of the year on secondment to our Strategy group so I am pleased to welcome Hannah Foreman as her replacement. Some of you may already know Hannah. For those who don’t a brief biography is below.
Hannah has been with Elsevier since 2007. Currently she is Head of Researcher Relations, being responsible for strategic alignment and project management for a number of Elsevier’s global partnership and engagement programs across the business. These include the Elsevier Editors’ Conferences, Editor, Author and Reviewer Update communications and Elsevier’s Publishing Connect (researcher training) program. In the last two years Hannah has been responsible for establishing a focus on early career researchers which has led to the launch of the Elsevier Publishing Campus (www.publishingcampus.com), a free and open online platform that provides lectures, interactive training and professional advice on a wide range of academic and publishing topics, and which recognizes researchers for their efforts with awarded personalised certificates.
Laura and Hannah's secondments run from July 1st until December 11th 2015.
We would also like to welcome another colleague, Graham Nisbet who is Senior Acquisitions Editor for Mathematical Sciences Books.
Christopher Greenwell, Publishing Director, Mathematical Sciences
Chiara Farinelli, Journal Publisher Mathematics & Statistics
Laura Schmidt, Journal Publisher Mathematics
Hannah Foreman, Journal Publisher Mathematics
Valerie Teng-Broug, Journal Publisher Mathematics