Friday 26 June 2020

Invitation to sign a joint commitment for action on inclusion and diversity in publishing

We would like to invite members of ALPSP to join the Royal Society of Chemistry and other publishers who have signed a joint public statement of commitment to take action on inclusion and diversity in scholarly publishing.  The statement is available here and below, and is the output from a workshop we held on 2 June with a number of other publishers on Action in Inclusion and Diversity in Scholarly Publishing. 

During the workshop the Royal Society of Chemistry shared their our own actions following on from the report Is publishing in the chemical sciences gender biased? , including their new, A framework for action in scientific publishing – improving inclusion and diversity in the chemical sciences. They also heard opinions and insights from others involved on how they can best work together to drive change. Importantly,  a joint public statement of commitment was agreed to take action on inclusion and diversity and drive change in scholarly publishing more widely.

Joint commitment for action on inclusion and diversity in publishing
Working together is key in driving positive change within scholarly publishing

The Royal Society of Chemistry has brought together 11 publishing organisations to set a new standard to ensure a more inclusive and diverse culture within scholarly publishing.

As a group, we acknowledge that biases exist in scholarly publishing and we commit to scrutinising our own processes to minimise these. We will pool our resources, expertise and insight to accelerate research culture change.

Collectively we will:

1. Understand our research community
We will collaborate to enable diversity data to be self-reported by members of our community, and we will work towards a collective and compliant system so that researchers only need to self-report data once. We will share and analyse anonymised diversity data to understand where action is needed.

2. Reflect the diversity of our community
We will use anonymised data to uncover subject-specific diversity baselines, and set minimum targets to achieve appropriate and inclusive representation of our authors, reviewers and editorial decision-makers.

3. Share success to achieve impact
We will share and develop new and innovative resources to improve representation and inclusivity of diverse groups. We will transparently share policies, measurements, language and standards, to move inclusion and diversity in publishing forward together.

4. Set minimum standards on which to build
We will scrutinise our own publishing processes and take action to achieve a minimum standard for inclusion in publishing, based initially on the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Framework for Action in Scientific Publishing. We will engage all relevant stakeholders to improve outcomes on inclusion and diversity, at all stages of the publishing process.

We’re delighted that so many publishing organisations including Cambridge University Press, The Royal Society, Oxford University Press, IOP Publishing, BMJ, Elsevier, The Company of Biologists, Emerald Publishing, HindawiACS and several others have already signed the joint statement.

By working together, we will become more effective in driving positive change within scholarly publishing – and we invite and encourage other publishers to join us. 

If your organisation would like to become a signatory to the joint statement, please contact Nicola Nugent, Publishing Manager Quality and Ethics at Royal Society of Chemistry (


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