Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Article Type: Editorial From: International Journal of Social Economics, Volume 35, Issue 6.
The journal is being widely read and used and its active readership is growing rapidly.
Our count shows that in 2002 there were just over 50,000 “full text downloads.” By 2005, the number had grown to over 80,000 and in the following year it doubled to more than 160,000. And in 2007, we reached 213,326. “Downloads” include articles a long way back, but the figures for 2007 articles show an average of 174 downloads for each article. In 2006, it was 226. (The numbers for the articles published in 2007 will, of course, continue to grow.) Several articles were downloaded more than 3,000 times in 2007 and one more than 5,000.
In the past, journal editors and publishers knew little more than the number of subscribers. More recently citation indexes have allowed us to make some indirect inferences. Still more recently, as journals have come to be read on the internet, it has become normal practice to count the number of people who consult a journal and, more revealingly, to count the number of times an article is not just looked at but downloaded in full. The “full text downloads” are a fairly good measure of serious readership.
Our readership is very widespread with readers in almost every country. Readership is heaviest in the UK and western Europe with north America showing very well. But elsewhere, there is a large readership as well. Malaysia, for instance, is one of countries where usage is highest.
Articles on the social consequences of economic development, globalisation and poverty show strongly. So do topical issues such as the influence of Islamic theology on economics. We are always looking for articles that deal with the pressing social issues of our time assessments of the increasing spread of wealth between rich and poor countries and between rich and poor in developed countries, changing life under climate change, and impact of taxation and trading arrangements. Articles on corporate governance have figured well, showing the continuing interest in the shifting patterns of contemporary capitalism. But, we also look for articles on basic economic theories and their social consequences and we would like to receive more.
To achieve its aims, the journal must provide an interface between economics, political theory, history, sociology, anthropology and philosophy. Our readership has welcomed and I am sure will continue to welcome papers by writers who work in any of these disciplines.
The journal has always been devoted to the question of human need and the possibilities of developing an economics to address that question and its relation to issues about the optimisation of production and distribution.
We are planning an interesting array of special issues, but academic journals are essentially driven by the research projects and discoveries of their readers and, within the realm of social economics, we are open to all ideas.
Our thanks to all our contributors.