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Editor's report.

Editorial Statistics

From January 1, 2008, through December 31, 2008, the Editorial Office received 343 new manuscript submissions. Tables 1-4, provide information about the editorial process and the journal for the past year and some previous years.

Table 1 shows the time between submission and the journal's first response, whether to reject, ask for a revision, or accept a manuscript for the 343 manuscripts submitted during 2008. Noticeably, almost 50% of the manuscripts received a first answer in less than 3 months. More than 75% of submitted manuscripts received a first answer in less than 4 months. Finally, no manuscript required more than 9 months for a first answer.

Table 2 reports trends in the number of submissions and accepted manuscripts from 1997 to 2008. After an initial decline in the number of submissions from 1997, mostly due to the change in editorship, submissions have been steady. In the last few years, however, the Journal has experienced a significant increase in the number of submissions. Acceptance rates are steady, around 20%.

Table 3 shows the status of manuscripts submitted in the last four years as of June 1, 2009, and provides a more accurate account of the editorial process.

Finally, Table 4 shows the distribution of published papers in 2005-2008 by subject, using JEL codes. Considerable fluctuation appears in the number of papers in each category over the four-year period considered, which is acceptable for a general interest journal.

Editorial Process

Manuscripts are submitted to the Journal using Editorial Express, an Internet-based electronic system. Once submitted, papers are assigned by the Editor to one of the Co-Editors or to herself for the refereeing process. Papers are assigned on the basis of field of expertise of the Co-Editor, combined with a variety of other considerations, including equalization of work load and conflict-of-interest rules. All responsibility for handling the manuscripts, including the final decision, rests with the Editor to whom the manuscript was originally assigned.

Manuscripts are reviewed using a double-blind process: the name of the author is removed from the paper and not revealed to the reviewers, and the referees' identities are not disclosed to the authors.

Editorial Staff

The Editorial Board for calendar year 2008 consisted of Christopher Bollinger of the University of Kentucky, Robert Feinberg of American University, Kent Kimbrough of Duke University, John Pepper of the University of Virginia, and myself. The addition of Robert Feinberg to the Editorial Board was motivated by the increased number of submissions realized in recent years. I thank my Co-Editors for their hard work and insights, as they continue to make a great contribution to the Journal and to the economic profession.

The Editors rely heavily on the Board of Associate Editors for advice in the evaluation of manuscripts. On behalf of my fellow Co-Editors, I thank the Associate Editors for their help in our editorial tasks. Finally, we cannot forget the nearly 700 referees who have spent time and energy during 2008 reading and offering valuable comments on the manuscripts received by the Journal. My deepest appreciation goes to them.

I also thank Hayley Bialkowski, the Journal editorial assistant, for her outstanding job of handling all the different tasks and demands of the Journal. Last but not least, I thank Professor John Rust and his associates for Editorial Express, the online editorial and reviewing program used by the Journal. Their online system has helped improve our editorial performance, significantly reducing the dwell time in handling manuscripts from submission to final decision.

Editorial Announcement

Beginning with the January 2010 issue, members of the Southern Economic Association will be offered the possibility of receiving online access to an electronic version of the Journal. Members will receive an email notification with instructions about how to access the Journal online.

Laura Razzolini

Editor

Table 1. Distribution of Editorial Decision Lags between Submission
and First Response to Author, January 1, 2008-December 31, 2008

     Months     Number of    % of Submissions
              Submissions

       0-3            171               48.9
       3-4             91               26.5
       4-5             53               15.5
       5-6             23                6.7
       6-9              5                0.1
       9+               0                  0

Table 2 reports trends in the number of submissions and accepted
manuscripts from 1997 to 2008. After an initial decline in the
number of submissions from 1997, mostly due to the change in
editorship, submissions have been steady. In the last few years,
however, the Journal has experienced a significant increase in
the number of submissions. Acceptance rates are steady, around 20%.

Table 2. Manuscripts Submitted and Accepted, 1997-2008

Year   Submitted   Accepted         % Accepted

1997         333        104               31.2
1998         279         68               24.4
1999         288         58               20.1
2000         251         57               22.7
2001         259         51               19.6
2002         244         50               20.4
2003         248         60               24.2
2004         242         59               24.0
2005         268         51               19.0
2006         289         57               19.7
2007         295         44               14.9
2008         343         53               15.4

Table 3. Status of Manuscripts by Year of Submission, 2005-2008

Year of      Accepted   Pending   Rejected   Summarily
Submission                                   Rejected

2005         52         0         196        8
             (19.6)               (73.2)     (2.6)
2006         57         0         194        27
             (19.7)               (67.2)     (9.3)
2007         42         0         224        17
             (14.2)               (75.9)     (5.8)
2008         41         21        218        34
             (11.9)     (6.1)     (63.6)     (9.9)

Year of      Revise &   Withdrawn Total
Submission   Resubmit

2005         4          8         268
             (1.4)      (3.0)     (100)
2006         5          6         289
             (1.7)      (2.1)     (100)
2007         10         2         295
             (3.4)      (0.7)     (100)
2008         28         1         343
             (8.2)      (0.3)     (100)

Notes: The data are as of June l. ?009. Percent are shown in
parentheses. Pending manuscripts include submissions and resubmissions
still in the hands of the Editorial Office. Revise & Resubmit
manuscripts are instead in the hands of the authors. Summarily
rejected manuscripts are returned to the authors without consulting
with a referee.

Table 4. Distribution of JEL Subjects for Accepted Manuscripts,
2005-2008

Subject Category                 2005   2006   2007   2008

General Economic and
  Teaching                          3      5      2      3
History of Economic Thought
  and Methodology                   0      2      0      1
Mathematical and Quantitative
  Methods                           2      9      5      1
Microeconomics                      2     10      4      9
Macroeconomics and Monetary
  Economics                         6      2      3      5
International Economics             7      7      4      6
Financial Economics                 1      2      0      3
Public Economics                    3      4      2      4
Health, Education, and Welfare      4     12      3      9
Labor and Demographic
  Economics                         7      5      3      8
Law and Economics                   3      1      2      1
Industrial Organization             4     13      4      7
Business Administration and
Business Economics;
Marketing; Accounting               0      0      0      0
Economic History                    1      0      0      1
Economic Development,
  Technological Change,
  and Growth                        4      3      1      2
Economic Systems                    0      0      0      0
Agricultural and Natural
  Resources Economics               1      0      0      0
Urban, Rural and Regional
  Economics                         0      0      0      0
Other Topics                        1      0      0      0
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Author:Razzolini, Laura
Publication:Southern Economic Journal
Article Type:Editorial
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 1, 2009
Words:1127
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