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Rachel PC Won How to get your papers published in Nature journals? 如何让您的论文问鼎 系列期刊 ? Rachel Pei Chin Won, PhD Associate Editor Nature Photonics 5 March.

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Presentation on theme: "Rachel PC Won How to get your papers published in Nature journals? 如何让您的论文问鼎 系列期刊 ? Rachel Pei Chin Won, PhD Associate Editor Nature Photonics 5 March."— Presentation transcript:

1 Rachel PC Won How to get your papers published in Nature journals? 如何让您的论文问鼎 系列期刊 ? Rachel Pei Chin Won, PhD Associate Editor Nature Photonics 5 March 2008

2 Rachel PC Won Overview ● nature and Nature research journals How to get published - Manuscript preparation - Manuscript submission Summary

3 Rachel PC Won nature & Nature research Journals

4 Rachel PC Won  nature was launched on 4 Nov 1869  The world’s foremost weekly scientific journal  For 2006, nature ’s impact factor is  A flagship journal of Nature Publishing Group (NPG) nature

5 Rachel PC Won nature A weekly print copy (>65,000) An anytime-anywhere electronic rendition of an item or of a print copy (>3 million users of nature.com per month) A gateway to a seamless flow of relevant and timely information and opinion

6 Rachel PC Won NPG’s Biological Sciences Division

7 Rachel PC Won NPG’s Physical Sciences Division Nature Materials Launched in 2002 Impact factor Nature Physics Launched in Oct 2005 Impact factor Nature Nanotechnology Launched in Oct 2006 Nature Photonics Launched in Jan 2007 & Nature Chemistry will be launched in Jan 2009 Nature Geoscience Launched in Jan 2008

8 Rachel PC Won Nature Research Journals Nature Biotechnology Nature Cell Biology Nature Chemical Biology Nature Genetics Nature Geoscience (Jan 2008) Nature Immunology Nature Materials Nature Medicine Nature Methods Nature Nanotechnology Nature Neuroscience Nature Photonics (Jan 2007) Nature Physics Nature Protocol Nature Structural and Molecular Biology Nature Chemistry (Jan 2009) Nature Review Journals Nature Reviews Cancer Nature Reviews Drug Discovery Nature Reviews Genetics Nature Reviews Immunology Nature Reviews Microbiology Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biol. Nature Reviews Neuroscience Nature Clinical Practice 8 titles Academic Journals Around 40 titles The ISME Journal Nature Publshing Group’s Publications

9 Rachel PC Won What makes Nature titles distinct?  Highly selective  Focus is on quality rather than volume  High impact  Full-time professional editorial staff  No external editorial board or affiliations  Editorially independent of each other Share general policies but not submissions Pass on manuscripts only at request of authors

10 Rachel PC Won Publications from China

11 Rachel PC Won Submissions from China to nature

12 Rachel PC Won Myth of Editors’ Bias Ever since Nature’s foundation in 1869, Nature’s editors and editors of all Nature journals have been 100% responsible for selection of papers – no editorial boards. Editors read and assess papers in a way that is independent of country of origin. Editors are of many nationalities, including Asian. Editors visit many countries, including China. There is no bias against countries by the editors of Nature or Nature journals.

13 Rachel PC Won How to get published in Nature journals?

14 Rachel PC Won Steps to a great paper Thoughtful research 深思 / 周道的研究 Thorough preparation 彻底的准备 Logical exposition 逻辑的说明 Plan your papers -When you plan your research -Again before you start writing the draft

15 Rachel PC Won Before writing a paper Why does the topic interest YOU? What are the key findings of your work? What was thought/known/done before this work? What’s the main message for your readers? Re-evaluate the original data, not only the ‘for publication’ figures How does new data change thinking, or support current approach, or open new avenues or research?

16 Rachel PC Won 孙子兵法 : 知己知彼 百战百胜

17 Rachel PC Won What editors seek High degree of novelty or innovation 高度新奇或创新的主题 Interesting to a broad range of readers 能引起广泛的读者感兴趣 Significant step forward 值得注意的的进步 Breakthrough in performance 突破的表现 High impact in the field 重大的影响 Important advance in scientific understanding that provides new directions for research 在科学理论上有显著, 优越的进展为研究提供新的方向 Data persuasively supports conclusions 可说服性地支持结论的数据

18 Rachel PC Won Submission Editorial assessment Decline External peer review Editorial decision Decline Revision requested Accept Editorial Processes

19 Rachel PC Won Results Several possibilities: Accept, with or without editorial revisions Invite the authors to revise their manuscript to address specific concerns Reject, but indicate to the authors that further work might justify a resubmission Reject outright, typically on grounds of specialist interest, lack of novelty, insufficient conceptual advance or technical/interpretational problems

20 Rachel PC Won Write (not phone) to us and explain why you believe we (referees and editors) have overlooked or misunderstood something Revised manuscripts normally go back to the same referees; need a strong case to replace a referee as they normally come back with new set of points The paper must not be submitted for publication elsewhere during this time It is likely that some time will elapse before we can respond How to make an appeal?

21 Rachel PC Won Manuscript preparation How to get your point across… HINT: Write for both the beginner and the expert

22 Rachel PC Won Nature is for broadest or deepest impact Research journals overlap Depends on the editorial scope of the journal and your target audience Which journal? …

23 Rachel PC Won Presubmission enquiry Ask us! All Nature journals have a presubmission enquiry procedure on the submissions page It is not compulsory Simply send in a fully referenced summary with a cover letter and we’ll tell you within 2–3 working days if it’s suitable Editors cannot make an absolute commitment to have a contribution refereed before seeing the entire paper

24 Rachel PC Won All Nature journals including Nature are editorially independent A rejection from one does not mean a rejection from the others Manuscripts rejected from one journal can be automatically transferred to any of the others Eliminates need for author to re-input a manuscript Author’s choice if they wish to do full transfer or just partial transfer Transfer link can be found at the end of the rejection letter Manuscript Transfer System

25 Rachel PC Won Letter usual format for research findings, up to 1500w Article more detailed study, around 2000 – 3000w Review article overviews of an up and coming topic, 4000 – 5000w Commentaries opinion articles on topics that are considered of wide- ranging appeal and timely News & Views short articles explaining the significance of a recent piece of research (not your own) Types of submission

26 Rachel PC Won Double-spaced Normal A4 paper, single column in word or Latex format English as in Oxford English dictionary Title, text, methods, references, end notes (Supplementary Information, Acknowledgements, author contributions (optional)), tables and figure legends General format for Letters and Articles

27 Rachel PC Won Clear and attractive Not too general or vague Not too long, less than 90 characters for Letters & less than 75 characters for Articles (incl. spaces) Does not normally include numbers, acronyms, abbreviations or punctuation Instead of: “Record electro-optic coefficient of 170 pm/V and V of 1V at 1.55 μm in hybrid crosslinkable polymer/sol-gel waveguide modulators”, why not: “Hybrid polymer/sol-gel waveguide modulators with exceptionally large electro- optic coefficient”? Title

28 Rachel PC Won Original reports with substantial advance in understanding of an important problem and have immediate, far-reaching implications Do not normally exceed 5 pages Summary of up to 150 words Introduction of about 500 words 2 Headings: Results and Discussions  6 subheadings in Results Main Text of typically 3000 words (excl. summary, incl. Introduction) 5-6 displays (figures or tables) Up to 50 References Articles

29 Rachel PC Won Summary  150 words Introduction  500 words Heading 1: Results  6 Subheadings

30 Rachel PC Won Summary 150 words equivalent to Abstract in many journals separate from main text no references, numbers, abbreviations, acronyms or measurements aimed at readers outside the discipline 2-3 sentences of basic-level introduction a brief account of the background and motivation of the work a statement of main conclusions (introduced by “Here we show…”) 2-3 sentences putting the main findings into general context Articles

31 Rachel PC Won Short reports of original research focused on an outstanding finding that will be of interest to scientists in other fields Do not normally exceed 4 pages No summary or introduction sections Introductory paragraph of about 200 words Main text of not more than 1500 words (excl. introductory paragraph) No subheadings Discussion does not repeat previous introductory paragraph, briefly conveys the general relevance of the work 3-4 displays (figures and tables) No more than 30 references Letters

32 Rachel PC Won Introductory Paragraph  200 words No heading!!! No summary!!!

33 Rachel PC Won Introductory Paragraph ideally of about 200 words, definitely not more than 300 words aimed at readers in other disciplines with references 2-3 sentences on basic introduction to the field one-sentence statement of the main conclusions starting with 'Here we show…' or equivalent phrase 2-3 sentences putting the main findings into general context note that main text will continue to describe the findings of the paper Letters

34 Rachel PC Won Main text Materials Methods Principles Mechanisms Results with displays Discussion

35 Rachel PC Won Discussion Comparison to previous work Theoretical or practical implications Conclusion regarding the significance of the work Limitations Future work

36 Rachel PC Won Write with the readers in mind! Focus on a single main question Plan the content and organization with an outline especially the flow of reasoning Use simple, direct and concise wording Check that all parts are connected with persuasive reasoning, appropriate structure, linkage and context Express appropriate level of confidence: impossible implausible unlikely plausible possible probable likely certain

37 Rachel PC Won Paper writing tips Write in active voice; for example, “We demonstrate…” rather than “It is demonstrated…” State the present work in present tense State already published work in past tense Do not extend your conclusions beyond those that are directly supported by your results Give potential impact and future work

38 Rachel PC Won Paper writing tips Make sure that you reference relevant previous literature Be concise; format for letters is 1500 words for the main text; put lengthy method and simulation details in separate sections at the end of the paper if you need more space Clearly put your work into context, explain the importance of your findings in relationship to previous papers Refer briefly to your results to support your discussion statements

39 Rachel PC Won Methods If brief (less than 200 words in total), include them in the text at an appropriate place Cite a reference to methods published before to save space; with the new addition or variation briefly stated Can also create a new section called “Methods”;  1000 words, not counted as main text Figures in “Methods” should be submitted as Supplementary Information

40 Rachel PC Won Supplementary information Supplementary information is encouraged Peer-reviewed Online access only, not in print Material directly relevant to the conclusion of a paper that cannot be included in the printed version for reasons of space or medium, e.g. movie clips or sound files Not subedited; authors should ensure that it is clearly presented

41 Rachel PC Won Manuscript Submission

42 Rachel PC Won A letter that you submit together with your manuscript but in a separate file only to the editors Authors are encouraged to write cover letter Cover Letter

43 Rachel PC Won Restate main message and significance of paper Explain in clear and simple terms why the findings are important and what is their potential impact e.g. “first time…”, “big leap in performance…”, “will help enable applications in…”, “new level of understanding…”… Include a separate summary for non-specialist audience List the details of the submission - submission type - number of words and figures - any supplementary information and supporting manuscripts Cover Letter

44 Rachel PC Won Can suggest referees and include their areas of expertise Can suggest exclusion list: who should NOT be approached to review the MS because of conflicts of interest Statements that experiments done comply with animal care and human subject laws Statement that manuscript is not simultaneously being considered at another journal Include your contact information ( , phone, address) Cover Letter

45 Rachel PC Won What’s wrong ? - Too brief - No explanation as to why paper is important - No suggested list of qualified referees or exclusions - No details of format, length Cover Letter How not to write a cover letter:

46 Rachel PC Won - Explains paper is letter format - Explains and emphasizes main important points of the paper - Gives a list of referees Cover Letter A good example:

47 Rachel PC Won More tips Visit Nature’s manuscript formatting guide: Visit Nature journals’ websites Read published papers Always run the spelling checker; no excuse Find someone you trust who is a native speaker to check your paper

48 Rachel PC Won Summary Plan your paper when you plan your research Consider the reader/listener Organize your material well - focus sharply - outline - provide appropriate structure, linkage and context Carefully choose the journal and follow the guidelines Seek and value feedback and criticism

49 Rachel PC Won Helpful websites SciDev.Net’s “How do I?” Inter-Biotec gives free online writing course to help biomedical scientists Human Frontier Program’s “Websites and searching for collaborations” Element of Style by William J. Strunk is free online Nature has one-page downloadable information sheet on “summary paragraph” and many more…

50 Rachel PC Won Rachel Pei Chin Won, PhD Associate Editor Nature Photonics 如何让您的论文问鼎 系列期刊 ? 谢谢 !

51 Rachel PC Won Summary in Articles & introductory paragraph in Letters The most-read section of any paper Key points: 1.One or two broad general statements to orient the reader, set the stage, and provide context 2.Concise description of results, with mention of methodology used 3.Major conclusion 4.How this advances the field - why this is significant for readers

52 Rachel PC Won Summary in Articles or introductory paragraph in Letters How to confuse your readers? –Mix already published conclusions with claims made in this paper –Overinterpret & overspeculate –Misrepresent the data or conclusions –End with a throw-away line: “…effect on butterfly wings are discussed.” when it is better with: “The iridescent scales of the Morpho butterfly give a different optical response to different individual vapours, and that this optical response dramatically outperforms that of existing nano- engineered photonic sensors.”

53 Rachel PC Won Paper writing tips All variables should be defined Avoid ambiguous use of pronouns “this”, “that”, “these”, … Avoid jargons and the excessive use of abbreviations and acronyms Don’t make claims that you are not sure, avoid hype and speculation Never say “for various reasons”

54 Rachel PC Won References Are numbered sequentially Reference numbers are superscript Use “et al.” if more than five authors Cite only published or submitted articles Titles are required References to websites should give authors if known, title of cited page, URL in full and year of posting in parentheses

55 Rachel PC Won Figures Figures tell the story Order is absolutely critical Strive for data-rich presentation Show as much raw data as possible. If n experiments done for each data point, then show all points, rather than the average and standard deviation

56 Rachel PC Won More on figures Label clearly Figures must accurately reflect data as gathered Choose carefully –Main text for main data –Figures in Supplementary Information appear online only No ‘data not shown’. Either put data in the Supplementary Information section, or remove reference to it altogether


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