BishopBlog: Journals without editors: What is going on?
" ... People were even more puzzled by my reaction, which was to express surprise and to thank Michelle for telling me. Surely, you might think, you'd know if you were on the Editorial Board of a journal. But, actually, that's not always the case. I had no recollection of having joined the Editorial Board, but my memory for the past is not good. I did remember having some correspondence with Johnny Matson around 2008, about a nice article he'd written concerning problems with some of the 'gold standard' diagnostic instruments (see this blogpost for more on this). I suspected that I'd agreed to serve on the Editorial Board in the course of this email exchange, but I had no details of this on file. Journals vary considerably in how far they treat their Editorial Board as emblematic, and how far they actually make use of the board in decision-making. I had barely had any interaction with Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders over the years, and had remained sufficiently unaware of my Editorial Board role to omit this from my curriculum vitae. But there I was, as Michelle had noted, listed as a member of the Editorial Board on the journal website. I realised that I had to take action for two reasons. First, RASD was an Elsevier journal. I had been convinced by the arguments of Tim Gowers to sign the Cost of Knowledge statement, pledging not to support Elsevier, in the light of their exorbitant pricing of journals. In 2012 I had resigned from the editorial boards of other Elsevier journals. But I'd been unaware that I was on the Editorial Board of RASD, so I had not written to them. Second, I was interested in Michelle's concerns about editorial practices at the journal. I thought I had better check her claims out for myself. What I found was disturbing. Matson had been editor of Research in Developmental Disabilities (RIDD) since the journal's inception in 1987, and he then took up editorship of the sister journal, Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders when it started in 2007. As can be seen in Figure 1, his publication rate shot up around 2007, and an analysis using Web of Science reveals that many of these papers were published in RASD or RIDD. Indeed, Matson is an author on over ten percent of the papers published in RASD since 2007 ..."