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Science Editing > Volume 1(1); 2014 > Article
Kim: Past, present, and future of Journal of Neurogastroenterology and Motility

Introduction

Journal of Neurogastroenterology and Motility (JNM) was accepted as one of the Science Citation Index Expanded (SCIE) journals on September 13, 2013. It became the 30th medical journal indexed in SCIE in Korea. In this essay, I would like to introduce the history of JNM and how it attracted the attention not only from Korean academic societies but also from the world.

History of Journal of Neurogastroenterology and Motility

JNM was launched in January 2010 through the conversion of the Korean Journal of Neurogastroenterology and Motility (KJNM) which had been published in 1994 through 2009 as the official journal of the Korean Society of Neurogastroenterology and Motility (KSNM). The original journal, KJNM, started as a domestic journal in Korean. The aim of KJNM was to foster and promote research activities in the area of the motor, sensory and functional disorders of gastrointestinal tract in Korea. The four major covering diseases include gastroesophageal reflux disease, functional dyspepsia, irritable bowel syndrome and constipation. Most of these diseases are functional rather than organic. Related medical fields are gastroenterology, physiology, surgery, pediatrics, and psychiatry. Until the end of 2009 KJNM had been published biannually and sometimes it was difficult to secure enough submissions of original articles. The breakthrough of the Journal started with the launch of the Asian Neurogastroenterology and Motility Association (ANMA, the first president was Professor Young-Tae Bak, Korea University) which was founded on March 21, 2008 in Bangkok, Thailand. During ANMA 2009 Seoul, the 1st Biennial Congress of ANMA, which was held in Seoul, Korea on April 2 to 4, 2009, it was suggested that KSNM and ANMA could jointly create a new journal through conversion of the Korean domestic journal, KJNM, to an international journal. There has been a hesitation to accept this offer because of some concerns from the lack of confidence about the eventual success of the new journal. However, there was extensive discussions regarding the concerns and finally JNM was launched from the volume 16 issue 1 in January, 2010. The main aim of JNM was to provide world researchers in this field with accessible rooms for the publication of their research results in the field of neurogastroenterology and motility. Prior to the appearance of JNM, the journal Neurogastroenterology and Motility had been the only international journal in this field. Many clinicians and researchers hoped that the journal could deal with a wider spectrum of papers and more variable points of view. Thereby, JNM could attract much attention by the authors and readers and they submitted articles with broader scope.

International Editorial Board Members

In 2009, associate editors and editorial board members were invited mainly from Asia and Australia and a few scholars from USA and Europe were also invited. Regarding the first Editor-in-Chief, there was a consensus that a scholar from USA would be more appropriate than from Asia mainly for the more submissions of excellent review articles. Several candidates were selected and contacted individually. The invitation letter clearly described why KSNM and ANMA tried to invite Editor-in-Chief from USA. Finally, Professor Ronnie Fass accepted the invitation and he insisted that he is also an Asian because he came from Israel. In the first issue, he submitted a review article on non-erosive reflux disease, which has been the most frequently cited article of JNM, so far. Associate editors were selected mainly from Asia in the first term (January 2010 to December 2013). Now in the second term (January 2014 to December 2017) the nationalities of associate editors became more diverse. That is, assiciate editors came from Korea (6), USA (3), China (2), Japan (2), Belgium (1), India (1), Malaysia (1), Singapore (1), Thailand (1), and UK (1). Editorial board members in the second term were from Korea (8), Japan (3), China (2), Brazil (1), Germany (1), Hong Kong (1), India (1), Italy (1), Mexico (1), Poland (1), Taiwan (1), Thailand (1), Sri Lanka (1), and USA (1). Annual editorial board member meeting is held during the international scientific congresses where many editorial board members participate. In addition, 19 KSNM publication committee members play practical roles in the publication process of JNM to support the Deputy Editor.
One of the most distinguished characteristics of JNM is that the Journal has become a common official journal of many Asian societies in addition to ANMA including the Thai Neurogastroenterology and Motility Society (October 2010), the Japanese Neurogastroenterology and Motility Society (January 2011), the Indian Motility and Functional Disease Association (October 2011), the Chinese Society of Gastrointestinal Motility (October 2012), and South East Asia Gastro-Neuro Motility Association (April 2013). Therefore, the Journal has become available to a very large global pool of readers and authors especially in Asia.

Worldwide Peer Reviewer Pool

Peer reviewers were invited from the world as well as from Korea according to their expert areas in the clinical and basic researches. The reviewer pool has been increased gradually and includes 72 Korean reviewers and 35 worldwide reviewers from Asia, America, Europe, and Australia. Most editorial board members also has a role as reviewers. Reviewers are unaware of the identity of the authors and authors are also unaware of the identity of reviewers. At least two reviewers review each manuscript and the reviewing processes are finished mostly in 14 days. Average duration before the 1st decision is 7.5 days, which is expected to become shorter in the near future.

Contents and Worldwide Submissions

In addition to the reviews, original papers and case reports, JNM has the sections of “How to Interpret a Functional or Motility Test” and “Image and Learning.” These educational sections are specifically designed for the young clinicians and those who seek more experience in this field. The section, “Journal Club” provides summaries and commentaries about the most recently published advanced and interesting papers. These are some of the strong points of JNM compared to other journals. In addition, every issue has at least three Letters to the editors and Author’s replies. Furthermore, to make the readers understand the importance of the original articles, each issue has two editorials. Contents of JNM are Editorials (2), Review articles (2-4), Original articles (6-7), Case reports (0-1), How to perform a motility or functional test (1), Image and learning (2), Journal clubs (2), and Letter to the editors (2-4). To promote the submissions of excellent original articles and review articles, not only the editorial board members but also all members of KSNM and ANMA are encouraged to submit papers. Specifically, most Korean doctors who have had stayed in other famous centers in the world for the clinical or research purposes are encouraged to submit review articles co-authored with their ex-principal investigators. Top quality review articles were accepted from many international authorities in each field of neurogastroenterology and motility. Many original papers have been submitted by authors from various countries in the world such as Canada, Greece, Belgium, Sri Lanka, Turkey, Iran, Ireland, Mexico, and Brazil. Due to the high quality of the published papers, JNM has drawn much attention from the world and the citations have increased at a very fast pace. A total of 17 issues of JNM have been published on time since 2010 and the Journal has become rich in its contents with a variety of sections.

Bibliographic Database and Worldwide Citation

We tried to make JNM be indexed in the worldwide bibliographic databases under the guidance of Professor Sun Huh who helped JNM from its launch. When JNM’s language was changed into English from the January issue of 2010, the first task was to add JNM to PubMed Central (PMC). Being indexed in PMC means to be indexed in PubMed since citation data is transferred from PMC to PubMed. The starting point of JNM as an international journal was June 9, 2010 when it became to be indexed in PubMed through PMC. XMLink helped a lot for the release of JNM articles to PMC. We would like to really thank for their excellent jobs. JNM also applied for Scopus/Embase on May 2010 and accepted on June 2011. EBSCO offered contract with JNM on December 22, 2011. Finally, JNM was selected as SCIE journal on September 13, 2013, 1 year after second application. Thomson Reuters decided that citation and reference data of JNM to be included in Web of Science from the issue of volume 17, number 1, 2011. To increase the citations, published papers are also open in social networking systems like Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/JNMjournal) and Twitter (http://twitter.com/JNMjournal). Furthermore JNM has an open access policy and no article-processing fees (e-submission at http://www.jnmjournal.org). Until now more than 71 SCIE journals cited papers of JNM.

Effective Distribution of Hard Copies and Electronic Forms

Each issue of the Journal is published in hard-copy forms as well as in electronic forms. Over a thousand hard copies of each issue are distributed globally. KSNM directly sends the hard copies directly to the worldwide scholars and to the Asian societies which accepted JNM as their official journal. In addition, electronic journal alerts are sent to more than 8,000 readers and researchers over the world. Medrang Co. edits JNM and Inforang Co. manages the website of JNM and these two companies promptly respond the request of JNM editors.
Securing an enough solid budget is an essential requirement of a success of a journal and, in addition to the financial support from KSNM, JNM is also supported from the Korean Federation of Science and Technology Societies Grant funded by the Korean Government every year since 2011.

Rapid Increase of Impact Factor

The impact factor (IF) score of the Journal has reached 2.788 according to our own calculation as of January 15, 2014. JNM articles have been cited by authors from 44 countries around the world and even in journals of other fields in a relatively short period of 40 months. IF is shown in detail in Table 1.
Among the top 10 frequently cited articles until 2013, seven were review articles and three were original articles. Thus we think the success of a journal is dependent on how it can encourage the submissions of excellent review articles from the world.

Conclusion

I think that it is now only at the beginning of the success of JNM. I hope that IF of JNM could increase up to the 30 percentile among gastroenterology journals in the near future and hopefully within the 10 percentile. To attain this aim, I would like to make effective and successful strategy such as e-pub ahead of the print, ORCID, CrossMark, FundRef, and multimedia data including audio recording or video presentation and application for smart devices. JNM also needs devotional contributions from the eight international societies which accepted JNM as their official journal. Finally, I express my thanks to Professor Sun Huh and Professor Young-Tae Bak for their continuous assistances for the progress of JNM.

Conflict of Interest

No potential conflict of interest relevant to this article was reported.

Table 1.

Citation data of Journal of Neurogastroenterology and Motility
Indicator Value
Sum of the citations by SCIE in 2011 71
 No. of citable articlsa) published in 2010 48
 2011 IF (one year IF) 1.479
Sum of the citations by SCIE in 2012 219
 No. of citable articles published in 2010 and 2011 90
 2012 IF 2.433
Sum of the citations by SCIE in 2013 237
 No. of citable articles published in 2011 and 2012 85
 2013 IF 2.788

SCIE, science citation index expanded; IF, impact factor.

a) Citable articles: reviews, original articles, and case reports.

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