Articles | Volume 36, issue 1
11 Jan 2017
 | 11 Jan 2017


Alan Lord

Abstract. After seven years’ service as Editor-in-Chief of Journal of Micropalaeontology I am pleased to pass on the honour to Dr Sev Kender and his Editorial Board and to wish them every success. My predecessor, John Gregory, shouldered the editorial burden alone whereas I have been supported by an Editorial Board, and it is a pleasure to record my warm thanks to its membership over the years: Dr Sigal Abramovich, Dr Laia Alegret, Dr Elisabeth Brouwers, Dr Taniel Danelian, Dr John Gregory, Professor Michael Kucera, Professor John Marshall, Professor Emanuela Mattioli, Dr Giles Miller, Dr Martin Pearce, Dr Francesca Sangiorgi, Dr Catherine Stickley, Professor Bridget Wade and Dr Jeremy Young. I have relied on these Handling Editors for their specialist skills, experience, common sense and good judgement. Editorial work can be demanding, even if little respected by funding bodies. How much time should one reasonably spend on a manuscript that clearly contains good science but is poorly presented because the author lacks advice and direction? How much time should an Editor spend correcting language for authors with English as a second language? My test of language is to think ‘it may not be Oxford English but is it clear and unambiguous in its meaning?’ A guiding principle for me is summed up in the statement of the late Roger Kaesler of the University of Kansas Press: ‘It is our task as Editors to find meaning where none was intended’. You may smile at the apparent cynicism of this statement but underlying it is the real significance of editorial work as a contribution to original research and its promotion. Both Editor and Reviewer can contribute in this way, to advising, recommending or persuading authors that their science can be developed, perhaps made more fundamental in its impact on their discipline. At this point it is also a pleasure to record my thanks to numerous Reviewers who have given their time and expertise, in almost all cases responding positively and quickly to requests for their advice, in the understanding that reviewing manuscripts is part of the quid pro quo of publishing one's own papers.