Mississippi and the Publications of the State Academies of Science.
Throughout their history, state academies of science have promoted and disseminated local and regional scientific research through the publication of refereed journals and conference proceedings. Since 1939, the Mississippi Academy of Sciences has published a journal featuring its members' research. Over the years, the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences has received inconsistent indexing, but today it is comprehensively indexed by three indexing/abstracting sources and is available to more researchers though the Academy's early adoption of electronic distribution. A few other state academies of science have also moved to electronic publication and distribution, but most have been slow to make the transition to the new medium.
During 1997 and 1998, we conducted an examination of the publications of the state academies of science. Since the publication of that study (Hill & Madarash-Hill, 2000), the publishing landscape has changed significantly. Virtually all major non-profit and for-profit publishers have added electronic publication as an increasingly important method of delivering their content.
For-profit publishers have been quick to adopt electronic publication to supplement and protect the revenue that they derive from their print publications. The large professional societies have followed suit. Initially, the emphasis of the major publishers was on creating electronic versions of existing publications. Gradually, publishers have also begun creating electronic-only publications. The relative ease of creating and distributing electronic journals has prompted universities, academicians and smaller societies to create new scholarly electronic journals. Organizations such as the International Consortium for the Advancement of Academic Publication (ICAAP) have attempted to promote the creation and distribution of free or inexpensive scholarly publications.
In addition to creating electronic journals, the large for-profit and non-profit publishers have begun bundling their electronic journals into subject specific or publisher specific e-journal packages (e.g., ACM Digital Library or Academic Press' Ideal). Other database producers (e.g., Gale or Ebsco) have begun purchasing titles from a variety of publishers and professional societies and including the full text of the articles in their databases.
Given the increasing importance of electronic publication, it seems natural that the state academies of science would incorporate electronic publication and distribution into their publishing activities. At the time of our original study, the Mississippi Academy of Sciences was one of only three state academies of science that had begun making publications available on the Web. The Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences was the only peer-reviewed state academy of science journal that was available in its entirety on the Web.
It would be expected that more academies of science would follow Mississippi's lead and make issues available online (either free or by subscription). To see if this has happened, we decided to revisit the publications of the state academies of science, as well as examine the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences in more detail.
PUBLICATIONS OF THE STATE ACADEMIES OF SCIENCE
The great majority of state academies of science have been slow to migrate to the Web and electronic publication. Currently, almost all state academies have their own Web pages, although the URL's are not always stable due to changes in host sites and Webmasters. Some state academies (like Mississippi) have established independent domain names (e.g., http://www.msacad.org/). This has lead to greater stability and a stronger Web presence. Links to the Web pages of most of the state academies of science are available at the AcadSci Web site (http://www.acadsci.com/journals.htm).
While almost all academies have some presence on the Web, the availability of electronic content has been limited. Many academies do offer table of contents and abstracts on their Web pages. Academies offering table of contents of their publications include Arizona-Nevada (1987 to present), Arkansas (1941 to present), Georgia (1999 to present), Illinois (with abstracts, 1993 to present), Iowa (with abstracts, 1998 to present), Kansas (with abstracts, 1992 to present), Missouri (1997 only), New Mexico (special issues only), Ohio (with abstracts, 1997 to present), Oklahoma (1921 to present), Pennsylvania (1996 to present), Tennessee (1996 to present) and Texas (1998 to present). Some academies offer an index to their publications; these include California, New York and Michigan.
Currently, the only academies that have the full text of articles available via the Internet are California, Kansas, Mississippi, North Dakota and Oklahoma. Academy titles with some full text online are California Wild, Transactions of the Kansas Academy of Science, Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences, Proceedings of the North Dakota Academy of Science and Proceedings of the Oklahoma Academy of Science.
California Wild (http://www.calacademy.org/calwild/) is a general-interest science and natural history magazine. The full text of issues is available from 1996 to present. In addition to the full text of articles, the Web site offers a searchable index that contains entries for approximately 2000 articles published from 1948 to present in California Wild (and its predecessor, Pacific Discovery).
The Kansas Academy of Science provides limited full text from its Transactions of the Kansas Academy of Science (http://www.emporia.edu /kas/ transact.htm). The Academy's Web site provides table of contents and abstracts from 1992 to the present. Full text is available for only a few recent articles (7 articles in 1997 and 1 article in 1998).
The Mississippi Academy of Sciences provides the complete full text of the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences (http://www.msacad.org/) from 1997 to present. The 1997 issues and most of the 1998 issues are available in both HTML and PDF; the remaining issues are available in PDF.
The North Dakota Academy of Science provides the full text of the 1997 Proceedings of the North Dakota Academy of Science (http://www.online.masu.nodak.edu/divisions/hssdiv/meartz/ndas/mailin gs.htm) at its Web site. The 1998 Proceedings is not available at the Web site but is available to be downloaded by Academy members.
Of the state academies of science, the Oklahoma Academy of Science has the most years of its publication on the Web. The full text of the Proceedings of the Oklahoma Academy of Science (http://digital.library.okstate.edu/oas/) is available in both PDF and HTML format from volume 56, 1976 to present. Table of contents are available from volume 1, 1921 to volume 55, 1975. In partnership with the Oklahoma Academy of Science, the Oklahoma State University Library Digitizing Center plans to continue digitizing past, present and future volumes of the proceedings and make the volumes freely available on the Web. This digitization project, outlined by Anderson (in press), may serve as a model for future digitization and preservation of state academies of science research.
In addition to delivering e-journals directly (as individual subscriptions or as part of e-journal packages), journal publishers are signing agreements with aggregators (e.g., Ebsco and Gale) to make the full text of their articles available in aggregator databases. Aggregator databases vary greatly in size, origin, scope, and price, but they all do one thing: they aggregate or collect electronic publications into unique, identifiable and searchable databases.
Five state academies of science have reached agreements with one of the major multi-disciplinary aggregators, the Gale Group, to provide the full text of articles to Gale's Expanded Academic ASAP and Info Trac OneFile. State academies of science titles that are included in these databases (from 2000 to present) are Journal of the Colorado-Wyoming Academy of Science, Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences, Michigan Academician, New Mexico Journal of Science, and Ohio Journal of Science.
Expanded Academic ASAP and InfoTrac OneFile are two of the most widely available multidisciplinary aggregator databases, so the availability of full text through these databases greatly improves the indexing and full text accessibility of these academies' publications in academic libraries across the United States.
JOURNAL OF THE MISSISSIPPI ACADEMY OF SCIENCES
The early history of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences as well as the Journal has been chronicled by Robert Bailey in a detailed article that appeared as a supplement to the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences (1993). According to Bailey, The Mississippi Academy of Sciences began with an informal meeting of eight scientists in 1929 and convened its first official meeting in 1930. At the 1939 meeting, the Academy decided to create an annual publication that would include the proceedings of the annual meeting as well as publish members' research. Although the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences was intended to be an annual publication, it was published irregularly during its first 35 years. It was not until volume 19, 1973-1974 that the Journal began to be published each year. The annual publication included refereed papers. Abstracts of the annual meeting papers were published as a supplement. Beginning in 1991, the frequency of publication was increased to approximately three times per year. Since 1996, the Journal has been published quarterly with three regular issues and one meeting abstracts issue.
The title of the Journal has experienced some minor changes over the years. In 1948, the title was changed from the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Science to the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences, Inc. to reflect the Academy's change in name. In 1949, the title was shortened to Journal of the Mississzppi Academy of Sciences. A more significant change occurred in 1991. Beginning with volume 36, no.2 1991, "Science in Mississippi" was added to the cover. This addition coincided with other significant changes in the journal. The decision was made to publish the journal three or four times per year and to include articles that would appeal to the general science interests of its members as well as non-scientists. In addition to publishing original research, the new Journal had a glossier look with pictures, academy news and columns.
Initially submissions dropped and there was confusion over the title of the journal. In a "Letters to the Editor" column (1991), it was explained that "the addition of the title Science in Mississippi was not meant to be a complete change in the name of this publication" and that "the Journal should still be officially called the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences." Nevertheless, libraries generally treated it as a "title change" and cataloged the journal as Science in Mississippi: the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences, using Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences as an alternate title. Today many libraries have the journal cataloged and possibly shelved under the title Science in Mississippi.
Indexes and databases that index the Journal continue to use the title Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences or the abbreviated title J Miss Acad Sci. Like all state academies of science journals, the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences has received uneven indexing over the years. Due to the multi-disciplinary nature of the state academies of science journals, most indexing sources index the journals selectively. Only those articles with subjects relevant to the index are included. This is a reasonable practice, as a geology database such as GeoRef should index only articles that are relevant to the study of geology and ignore the others. However, this lack of comprehensive indexing has caused articles to vary greatly in the amount of indexing that they have received.
Selective indexing makes it difficult to determine the level of indexing of state academies of science publications. Only a few articles may be indexed by the most subject specific indexes and there may be a few years between articles that are indexed. In our original study we considered a state academy of science title to be indexed by an index or database if there was a citation to any article published in the 1990's. Based on that criteria, we found that the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences was indexed in 1998 by 8 indexing sources: AGRICOLA, CAB International databases, Chemical Abstracts, GeoRef, Fisheries Review, State Academies of Science Abstracts, Wildlife Review and Zoological Record. CAB International was treated as one source, even though it includes over 40 different indexes.
Based on our recent reexamination of leading indexes and databases, it appears that the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences is currently indexed comprehensively by State Academies of Science Abstracts, Expanded Academic ASAP and Info Trac OneFile. The Journal is indexed selectively (but consistently) by CAB International databases, GeoRef, ProceedingsFirst and Zoological Record. Additional indexes and databases have indexed the Journal selectively in the past and may continue to include citations and abstracts from the journal in future years. Details of this indexing follow.
STATE ACADEMIES OF SCIENCE ABSTRACTS
State Academies of Science Abstracts (SASA) provides the most comprehensive indexing coverage of the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences and most of the other publications of the state academies of science. SASA completely indexes all full-length papers and proceedings abstracts published in the publications of 40 state academies of science. The database's coverage of the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences includes every article and abstract published since 1985.
EXPANDED ACADEMIC ASAP AND INFOTRAC ONEFILE
Expanded Academic ASAP and Info Trac OneFile are multi-disciplinary databases produced by the Gale Group that index, abstract and provide some full text for scholarly, popular and trade serials. A recent study of the non-medical scientific content of multi-disciplinary aggregator databases found that Expanded Academic ASAP currently indexes 551 science and technology titles, provides full text from 261 of these titles and page images from 148 (Hill, 2001). Since Info Trac OneFile includes the content of a number of Gale databases (including Expanded Academic ASAP and Health Reference Center), it contains a wider coverage of science titles (especially in the medical/health sciences) than Expanded Academic ASAP.
Expanded Academic ASAP and Info Trac OneFile provide indexing and full text for articles published in the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences from January 2000 to present. The databases contain articles in both HTML and PDF, but graphics (i.e., tables, figures and photos) may be omitted for some articles.
Expanded Academic ASAP and Info Trac OneFile appear to be providing full text for all of the Journal's articles, including the meeting abstracts in January's "Abstracts Issue." However, the Gale databases differ from State Academies of Science Abstracts in the treatment of the Academy's meeting abstracts. SASA provides a separate record for each meeting abstract, in effect treating each abstract the same as an article. Gale does not create a separate record for each abstract; rather, it provides records for the meetings' broad subject divisions, such as "Geography and Geology." While the abstracts are available, they are a bit less accessible, as users are required to conduct a full-text search of the database in order to locate the individual meeting papers.
Despite the broad treatment of the meeting abstracts and the absence of graphics from some articles, the availability of the full text of the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences articles through Expanded Academic ASAP and Info Trac OneFile greatly increases the availability of the Journal to researchers at universities across the United States.
CAB International, having begun as the British Commonwealth Agricultural Bureaux, is now an international, non-profit organization that (among other things) produces two major agricultural/biological science databases, CAB Abstracts and CAB Health, as well as more than 40 subject-specific abstracting journals.
CAB Abstracts is a bibliographic database with over three million citations and abstracts from 1973 to the present. The database indexes the literature in the fields of agriculture, forestry, human health and nutrition, animal health and natural resources. CAB Health is a smaller database with approximately 700,000 records from 1973 to the present. The database indexes the literature dealing with human nutrition, parasitic, communicable and tropical diseases and medicinal plants.
In addition to producing the two larger CAB databases, CAB International also produces more than 40 subject-specific print and electronic abstracting publications. The content of these publications are derived from the larger CAB databases. These publications include:
Abstracts on Hygiene and Communicable Diseases
Agricultural Engineering Abstracts
Animal Breeding Abstracts
Crop Physiology Abstracts
Dairy Science Abstracts
Field Crop Abstracts
Forest Products Abstracts
Grasslands and Forage Abstracts
Irrigation and Drainage Abstracts
Leisure, Recreation and Tourism Abstracts
Nutrition Abstracts and Reviews - Series A. Human and Experimental
Nutrition Abstracts and Reviews - Series B: Livestock Feeds and Feeding
Plant Breeding Abstracts
Plant Genetic Resources Abstracts
Plant Growth Regulator Abstracts
Review of Agricultural Entomology
Review of Aromatic and Medicinal Plants
Review of Medical and Veterinary Entomology
Review of Medical and Veterinary Mycology
Review of Plant Pathology
Rural Development Abstracts
Soils and Fertilizers
Sugar Industry Abstracts
Tropical Diseases Bulletin
Wheat, Barley and Triticale Abstracts
World Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology Abstracts.
CAB International routinely scans over 7000 scientific titles, including the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences, for possible inclusion in CAB Abstracts, Cab Health and the subject specific abstracting publications. As a result, articles from the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences may be indexed and abstracted in any of the more than 40 CAB International abstracting sources. An examination of CAB Abstracts indicates that 72 articles from the Journal have been indexed since 1971 with the most recent article being indexed in 2000.
Produced by the American Geological Institute, GeoRef provides comprehensive coverage of geology and geophysics literature. The database corresponds to the print publications: Bibliography and Index of North American Geology, Bibliography of Theses in Geology, Bibliography and Index of Geology Exclusive of North America, Bibliography and Index of Geology and Geophysical Abstracts. The database includes citations to articles from the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences and over 3,500 additional journals as well as books, book chapters, conference papers, government publications, theses, dissertations, reports and maps.
An examination of GeoRef indicates that 336 articles from the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences have been indexed since 1939. The most recent article to be indexed was published in 2000.
ProceedingsFirst is a database produced by OCLC that provides citations of every congress, symposium, conference, exposition, workshop and meeting received at The British Library from 1993 to present. Each record in the database contains a list of the papers presented at each conference.
Individual papers are not indexed, but ProceedingsFirst does contain a record for each annual meeting of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences from 1994 to 2001.
As the premier zoology database, Zoological Record provides international coverage of zoological literature with particular emphasis on systematic/taxonomic information. Coverage is from 1870 to present in the print index. The online version covers 1978 to present. BIOSIS, the producer of Zoological Record, routinely scans over 4,500 titles, including the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences.
An examination of the online version of Zoological Record indicates the 90 articles have been indexed from 1978 to 2001. An undetermined number of pre-1978 articles have also been indexed in the print version of the index.
OTHER INDEXES AND DATABASES
Several other indexing/abstracting sources have indexed the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences in past years but have not indexed any recent articles from the journal. These indexes/databases include AGRICOLA, BIOSIS, Chemical Abstracts, Fish and Fisheries Worldwide and Wildlife Worldwide.
AGRICOLA is a bibliographic database created by the USDA National Agricultural Library and contains citations to agricultural literature. AGRICOLA indexed 72 articles published in the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences between 1970 and 1993. Unfortunately, AGRICOLA appears to have discontinued indexing the Journal and a number of other state academies of science journals in the mid 1990's.
BIOSIS Previews is a comprehensive biology database that consists of Biological Abstracts (which contains references to journal articles) and Biological Abstracts/RRM(which contains references to conference proceedings). Biological Abstracts (BIOSIS) currently indexes and abstracts over 5000 journals. Between 1972 and 1981, BIOSIS Previews indexed 588 articles and meeting abstracts published in the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences.
Chemical Abstracts is the most comprehensive database of chemical literature with 16 million abstracts from more than 8,000 journals, patents, technical reports, books, conference proceedings, and dissertations. Between 1960 and 1990, Chemical Abstracts indexed 171 articles and abstracts from the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences.
Fish and Fisheries Worldwide indexed 112 articles/abstracts from 1975 to 1994 and Wildlife Worldwide indexed 59 articles from 1971 to 1994. Both of these databases are produced by the South African National Inquiry Services Centre (NISC) and contain citations from the former U.S. government publications, Wildlife Review and Fisheries Review. These publications were produced by the U.S. National Biological Service until 1995. NISC discontinued indexing the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences and other state academies of science journals when NISC took over publication of the indexes.
Other indexing sources that have been identified as having indexed a few articles over the years; these include Aerospace Abstracts (1 article), Mathematical Reviews/MathSciNet (2 articles), PASCAL (11 articles), TULSA/Petroleum Abstracts (1 article) and Water Resources Abstracts (2 articles).
As all publications of the state academies of science, the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences has been unevenly indexed over the years. However, with its inclusion in State Academy of Science Abstracts, Expanded Academic ASAP and InfoTrac OneFile, the Journal is currently being comprehensively indexed for the first time. The availability of the full text of the Journal's articles in Expanded Academic ASAP and InfoTrac OneFile further helps to distribute Mississippi research beyond the membership of the Academy.
There has not been a great deal of change in the publications of the state academies of science during the past three years. Very few are following the lead set by the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences in making their issues available electronically and thus making their articles more easily accessible to researchers.
In the past few years, the Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences has greatly improved its accessibility through the addition of comprehensive indexing by State Academies of Science Abstracts, comprehensive indexing and provision of full text by Expanded Academic ASAP and InfoTrac OneFile and provision of journal issues on the Academy's Web site. The future challenge will be to continue to expand access to the academy members' research by increasing indexing by major indexes and pursuing contracts with additional journal aggregators for the provision of electronic versions of the journal.
(1.) Author for correspondence.
Some information in this article also appears in "Electronic Publications of the State Academies of Science," Michigan Academician 2001 33(2):205-208.
Anderson C. 2001. Digitizing scientific articles: special challenges. Science and Technology Libraries. In press.
Bailey, R.J. 1993. History of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences: its first fifty years. Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences 38(2) Supplement: 1-46.
Hill, J.B. 2001. Aggregated science: an examination of three multi-disciplinary databases. Issues in Science and Technology Librarianship 29. [Online]. Available: http://www.istl.org/0l -spring [May 18, 2001].
Hill, J.B. and C. Madarash-Hill. 2000. Publications of the state academies of science. Science and Technology Libraries 19 (1):21-37.
Tiftickjian, J. 1991. Letters to the editor. Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences 36 (3):6.
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|Publication:||Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences|
|Date:||Oct 1, 2001|
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