Early this month, SAGE was excited to announce the launch of our latest open access journal, SAGE Open Engineering. We recently had the pleasure of talking to Editor- in-Chief, Eann Patterson, about open access, SAGE Open Engineering and his future plans for the journal. Here is what he said:
What made you want to get involved with SAGE Open Engineering?
I have been an Editor-in-chief for more than ten years, first for the International Journal, Fatigue and Fracture of Engineering Materials and Structures published by Wiley Blackwell; and then at the moment the Journal of Strain Analysis for Engineering Design, published by SAGE on behalf of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers. I was delighted to be offered the change to edit such an innovative journal. The reading habits of researchers in engineering are changing as a consequence of search engines and the availability of papers on-line. As a consequence, I think traditional journals with narrow scope and published in volumes and issues are becoming irrelevant. People want quality assurance and that’s what Sage Open Engineering will provide across the whole field of Engineering. Having the opportunity to be involved at the start of this is an opportunity to be involved at the start of a new way of publishing research in Engineering and that’s exciting.
What do you think the key advantages of this journal are?
The new journal builds on the success of SAGE Open, the only broad-spectrum open access journal for the humanities and social sciences. With SAGE Open having already established a substantial and well respected background to build off, the journal will offer new researchers many advantages including rigorous, quick peer review; high-quality, fast online publication and a global readership whom are able to access the papers and search their content easily and quickly, improved discoverability and ease of access.
What are you expectations for the journal?
I would like to see the journal duplicate the success of PLOSone in the sciences.
How long have you been aware of the concept of Open Access as it relates to Journal Publishing?
Probably about 3 or 4 years ago when I was at Michigan State University and involved in establishing the Composite Vehicle Research Center which was heavily supported by Federal funds.
What do you think are the main drivers behind the push for OA publishing?
As mentioned above, researchers are looking for different outlets in which to publish and access their work and other research. Recently there has been a ground-swell of opinion that research should be publicly available and that the research and scholarly community should be supported by being able to have easy and free access to research. When you add this to technological advances embodied in the Internet then the stage is set for a revolution in publishing.
What do you think the implications of the recent RCUK mandate are?
A great awareness in academia of open access publishing and a shift towards it. I am concerned that the provision of funds through universities centrally rather than attached to research grants will shift publishing decisions from individual academics to a central committee or officer, which would represent an infringement of academic freedom.
To hear more from Eann on his views on Open Access publishing and the benefits for authors to be published in an Open Access engineering journal, listen to the full interview here.