v14n4 From the Editors

About This Issue

Photo: Gerhard Wörner

This issue of Elements is the first of its kind. As mentioned in our previous From the Editors (v14n3), “Central Andes: Mountains, Magmas, and Minerals” is the first of the field-based thematic issues that features a specific geographic region of particular geological interest. The idea of field-based thematic issues was championed by Bernie Wood (Elements Principal Editor 2015–2017). He encouraged researchers to develop “field-based” proposals for possible inclusion in the Elements line-up. In December 2015, Gerhard Wörner submitted an idea for a thematic issue that would feature the Central Andes. It is not an easy task to encapsulate a massive geographic region in 6 mini-review articles for a readership that represents a broad spectrum of scientific interests. Obviously, one can’t cover everything in a single issue of Elements, so what topics should be featured? This is a new avenue to explore and we welcome your feedback. Gerhard graciously incorporated feedback from the editorial team and developed an approach that, we hope, will introduce you to some of the fascinating aspects of this region. The title touches on some of the key topics featured in this issue: mountains, magmas, and minerals. You will also learn about the impacts of climate on topography and you will find an “info box” on the diverse ore deposits found in this resource-rich land. The Parting Shots will give you a brief glimpse into the history, unique biology, and beauty of this fascinating region of our world.

For those who have the opportunity to travel to the Central Andes and the Atacama Desert, there are numerous field guides and tours readily available to you. Gerhard Wörner has also developed a guide for a road trip between the coastal city of Arica (Chile) to Lake Chungará located high in the Andes mountains. It can be freely downloaded here.

The editorial team continues to welcome and encourages all kinds of proposals that cover topics within the disciplines of petrology, mineralogy, and geochemistry. This issue is an example of something new that we are trying. We hope you enjoy it.

2017 Impact Factor = 4.34

The Thomson Reuters “InCitesTM Journal Citation Reports” for 2017 were released in June 2018. Elements’ impact factor was 4.34 in 2017, which ranks 2nd among the journals in the mineralogy category and 9th in the geochemistry/geophysics category. Elements impact factor remains steady. On average, the impact factor has hovered ~4.4 over the past 5 years.

In 2018, the 493 articles published in Elements from 2005 to 2017 received 2,806 citations. Over 640 different journals cited Elements articles in 2017, with the most citations found in the journals Chemical Geology (113), American Mineralogist (89), Ore Geology Reviews (83), Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta (80), and Lithos (75). Elements articles have been cited ~15,700 times over the last 13 years, averaging ~30 citations per article.

To date, there are four Elements articles that each have over 200 citations. Congratulations to these authors.

  • “CO2 Sequestration in Deep Sedimentary Formations” by Benson and Cole (2008, v4n5, p 325-331) – 294 citations
  • “Water Management Challenges Associated with the Production of Shale Gas by Hydraulic Fracturing” by Gregory et al. (2011, v7n3, p 181-186) – 293 citations
  • “Mineral Carbonation of CO2” by Oelkers et al. (2008, v4n5, p 333-337) – 237 citations
  • “Ferruginous Conditions: A Dominant Feature of the Ocean Through Earth’s History” by Poulton and Canfield (2011, v7n2, p 107-112) – 232 citations

Unlike many other journals, each Elements issue is collection of 5–7 related thematic articles that present a coherent picture of a topic. So, even though we celebrate the successes of individual articles such as those listed above, it is also important to glimpse at the collective impact of our thematic issues. As of July 2017, the most highly cited issues since the time of publication are as follows:

  • v3n1 – “Zircon, Tiny but Timely” (1,163)
  • v4n5 – “CO2 Sequestration” (683)
  • v2n2 – “Arsenic” (624)
  • v8n5 – “Rare Earth Elements” (509)
  • v3n5 – “The Critical Zone” (503)
  • v4n2 – “Phosphates and Global Sustainability” (495)
  • v2n6 – “The Nuclear Fuel Cycle” (494)

Each of these issues continues to receive ~40–50 new citations a year even though some of them were published more than 10 years ago. This is evidence of Elements staying power. More recent issues are also being actively cited. For example, the issue “Ophiolites” (v10n2) has had 361 citations over the last 4 years and the issue “Arc Magmatic Tempos” (v11n2) has had 204 citations in the last 3 years. In fact, more than one third of the 80 Elements issues to date have had over 200 citations each.

Elements is a magazine for general consumption, with its review articles written at a level that the technical nonspecialist can enjoy. If statistics can be used to prove a point, then we can confidently say that Elements readers have access (in print and online) to excellent articles on fascinating geoscience topics. Our readers are also fortunate that each magazine also allows them to stay in touch with the activities of many scientific societies, to see at a glance upcoming meetings and conferences, and to read relevant book reviews and so much more.

It is the continued commitment of the 17 participating societies that produce this magazine, the high quality of the articles themselves, the high-quality products and services advertised in our issues, and the over 16,000 members who read the magazine that are the key reasons why Elements continues to have such a positive impact on our scientific community.

Stop by the ELEMENTS Booth

Kate Knights, a scientist at the Geological Survey of Ireland, holding the August 2015 issue of Elements. She is pictured on the front cover.

In mid-June (16–21), Elements hosted a display booth at the Resources for Future Generations 2018 conference in Vancouver (Canada) (rfg2018.com). Over the four days that the exhibition hall was open, it was wonderful to meet the conference delegates, many of whom visited the booth to learn about Elements and our 17 participating societies. Welcome to those of you who joined a participating society and now receive Elements! Also, thanks to those of you who stopped by to share your fondness for Elements. It is so encouraging to hear how our readership appreciates and enjoys the magazine.

Elements will have a booth at the Goldschmidt 2018 conference in Boston (USA) and our editorial team will be on hand to answer your questions. Please stop by the booth to say hello, to learn about how to get your idea for a thematic issue into Elements, or to pick up a copy of the latest issue. We also will have a booth at the IMA2018 conference in Melbourne (Australia).

We look forward to meeting you.

Friedhelm von Blanckenburg, Nancy Ross, Jon Blundy, and Jodi Rosso

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