METM12 panel     Thread: Knowledge updates

News with practical implications from the world of biomedical editors: a year in review

Moderator: Jason Willis-Lee

Panelists: Thomas O'Boyle, Elke Bartholomäus, Dado Čakalo

Rationale Publishing in the biomedical sciences is increasingly challenging. Today's researchers and clinicians must navigate through a large body of complex instructions to authors, detailed reporting guidelines, and restrictive ethical and professional norms. Language professionals must stay abreast of these rapidly changing requirements in order to best advise their clients, both authors and journals' editorial staff.

Purpose This panel will review the past year for key issues in biomedical journal publishing of relevance to language professionals. The objectives are to provide an overview of the different topics of concern to authors, journal editors and publishers and to highlight how language professionals can use this knowledge to improve their services. It is assumed that the audience will be generally familiar with the terminology and standards of biomedical publishing, such that the panel can focus on recent developments.

Presentation content The panel will draw on the main sources of biomedical publishing guidance, including associations for editors (e.g. EASE, CSE, COPE, WAME, ICMJE), online resources (e.g. Equator Network, Retraction Watch, Scholarly Kitchen), trend-setting journals, their publishers and their associations (e.g. CrossRef), and the literature in the field of journalology. The news most relevant to language professionals will be selected and summarized.

We aim to make the audience participation at the end of this session as important as what the panelists have to say, so ample time will be set aside for discussion and debate. We strongly encourage colleagues to bring their own recent news to add to the discussion. At the end of the session, we will summarize the key messages from the year and attempt to predict new issues to emerge in the coming year.


Jason Willis-Lee studied medicine and physiology at Bristol Medical School, and translating and interpreting at Bath University. He has worked as a freelance medical translator and editor for a number of years and now works principally for Spanish clinicians, a CRO, and a medical publisher. He lives in Madrid with his wife and two daughters.

Elke Bartholomäus is copy editor and translations manager at Deutsches Ärzteblatt International. After having spent several years living and working in New York she received a master's degree in art history, literature and philosophy from the University of Cologne. She has been responsible for the English edition of Deutsches Ärzteblatt International since its inception in 2006.

Dado ÄŒakalo is editorial assistant and copy editor of Archives of Industrial Hygiene and Toxicology in Zagreb, Croatia, freelance translator and manuscript editor. Since 2009, he has been using iThenticate's tool as part of the CrossCheck initiative to detect scholarly plagiarism. He finds the tool useful but warns against uncritical interpretation of findings.

Thomas O'Boyle is a freelance translator, editor and language facilitator based in Madrid. His MA, from the University of Salford, is in translating and interpreting.