Note on the change of Editor

Program: electronic library and information systems

ISSN: 0033-0337

Article publication date: 26 July 2011

Citation

Tedd, L.A. (2011), "Note on the change of Editor", Program: electronic library and information systems, Vol. 45 No. 3. https://doi.org/10.1108/prog.2011.28045caa.001

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited


Note on the change of Editor

Article Type: Note on the change of Editor From: Program: electronic library and information systems, Volume 45, Issue 3

In 1984, at the start of Vol. 18, No.1 of Program, John Eyre, the then Editor (and since 1997 the Book Reviews Editor) introduced the issue with a “Note on the change of Editor”. In that Note it was stated that under the guidance of the previous Editor, Bob Young, Program had acquired a reputation for “quality and high standards”. John Eyre’s aim when he took over as Editor in 1976 was to “continue in this tradition and to add new dimensions to the coverage”. It was also stated that there had been “startling growth and change, which we have tried to match in the issues of Program”. Developments since 1984 have been equally startling and amazing and likewise, we have continued to attempt to cover such changes in papers published since I took over as Editor all those years ago!

The way that Program was “managed” by Aslib, the Association for Information Management, in the early days was based on the methods adopted for its “big sister” the Journal of Documentation. An Editorial Board was formed, with Richard Kimber, the founder of Program, as its Chairman. The Board met four times a year at Aslib’s offices which initially were in Belgrave Square (Knightsbridge), then Boswell Street (Bloomsbury), then Old Street (East End) and then in Stone House Court. These face-to-face meetings provided a superb opportunity to discuss the content of papers submitted, authors who might be approached to write for us, topics for special issues as well as to exchange news over the lunch break on work being carried out by Board members, who included many of the “movers and shakers” in the area of computer-based library systems of the time.

In the early days, the postal service was the method of communication between authors, referees, Aslib and myself. When the time came to edit accepted papers, scissors and glue were sometimes used to “cut and paste” in a literal manner! All this changed during the 1990s with the advent of word processors, personal computers and e-mail communication and in 1997 Aslib launched an electronic version of Program which was made freely available to those subscribing to the printed version.

In December 2001 the UK publisher Emerald acquired Program along with seven other journal titles from Aslib. As described in “Notes from the publisher” in the first (Vol. 36 No. 1, 2002) issue of the Emerald-published Program the new ownership was seen as bringing the following benefits to subscribers:

  • web-based publishing and archiving;

  • institution wide-licence (and accessible from a distance);

  • personal e-mail alerts of newly published articles;

  • reference linking; and

  • automatic permission to make up to 25 copies of individual articles for which Emerald holds the copyright.

Despite the demise of the regular Editorial Board meetings the journal has thrived under the new ownership and the regular monthly statistics provide evidence of the large number of downloads of articles published in Program by Emerald customers around the world. We have always encouraged papers from overseas, and now we have many more papers submitted from overseas than from the UK. The statistics of use also show great use made in countries such as India, Malaysia, People’s Republic of China, the USA as well as the UK of articles published. It is very fitting therefore that my successor, Dr Miguel-Angel Sicilia, is from the Computer Science Department at the University of Alcalá in Spain.

In 2006 we celebrated 40 years of Program with a number of the original Editorial Board members and authors attending a special event in London. An analysis of the papers published in the first 40 years was published (Tedd, 2006) and during that year we published a reprint of a key paper from each of the decades along with a “commentary” on recent developments in that particular area. In reflecting on the development of the journal in its first 40 years I commented:

[…] the success of such a venture is due to the energy, professionalism and enthusiasm of the people involved in the early days as board members and their successors, the dedication of the chairmen of the Editorial Board, the hard work of the editors, as well as to the large number of authors worldwide who submit their papers to us for possible publication and our professional colleagues who agree to referee papers as well as to review books (Tedd, 2006).

I have greatly enjoyed editing the journal and have appreciated the opportunity that it has provided in forming professional links with colleagues all over the world. As a university lecturer I have been fortunate in being invited to speak at many courses and conferences – and often this has resulted in papers from those countries appearing in Program. Indeed, my first involvement with the journal was being asked, by the then Editor, John Eyre, to submit a paper based on a presentation given at a Cataloguing and Indexing Group meeting of the then Library Association (Tedd, 1977). Teaching undergraduate and postgraduate students and editing a journal does provide useful insights into the requirements for papers published in a journal such as Program: electronic library and information systems. I am sure that Miguel-Angel will be well-placed in continuing this role.

Finally, I would like to record my sincere thanks to all the members of the Editorial Board (past and present), as well as other colleagues, who have responded to my request for their views on large numbers of papers, and also to the current Chair of the Editorial Board, Professor Mel Collier of Leuven University. Particular thanks must go though to Patricia Moore, Librarian and Enquiry Service Manager at the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales, who has helped greatly with various editorial matters during the years I have been Editor – our sons were three when we started and are now 30 and very good friends! I wish those involved in the production of Program: electronic library and information systems all the best in the coming years.

Lucy A. Tedd

References

Tedd, L.A. (1977), “Communications networks for computers; an introduction to the technical details”, Program: automated library and information systems, Vol. 11 No. 4, pp. 135–44

Tedd, L.A. (2006), “Program: a record of the first 40 years of electronic library and information systems”, Program: electronic library and information systems, Vol. 40 No. 1, pp. 11–26