Swiss Publisher Frontiers in Deal with Polish Biochemical Society

In News by Porter Anderson

The Polish Biochemical Society has agreed to have Frontiers begin publishing its journal ‘Acta Biochimica Polonica’ in August.

Image – Getty iStockphoto: Gorodenkoff

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson

To ‘Foster the Visibility of Research’
Amid quite a bit of open-access scholarly publishing news this week, we have word that the Swiss research publisher Frontiers has entered a new agreement to publish the journal Acta Biochimica Polonica from the Polish Biochemical Society.

Submissions for articles under this new arrangement Frontiers will open in August. The journal is expected to publish its first papers on Frontiers gold open-access platform in January.

Frontiers presents itself to the news media as the third most-cited and sixth largest research publisher. These, of course, are not ratings that Publishing Perspectives has verified.

Marking Frontiers’ first publishing partnership in Poland, the agreement with the Polish Biochemical Society is being positioned as a key moment in biochemistry in Central and Eastern Europe.

Adam Szewczyk, president of the society, is quoted, saying: “We look forward to the opportunities this partnership presents for sharing new and innovative research in the field of biochemistry.”

Robyn Mugridge, head of publishing partnerships at Frontiers, says, “We are confident that our collaboration will foster the visibility of research in the field of biochemistry in Poland and beyond.”

The journal Acta Biochimica Polonica, was first launched in 1954. It’s a peer-reviewed quarterly journal in English, publishing experimental and review papers in all areas of biochemistry, biophysics, and molecular biology.

Articles include research in enzymology and metabolism, membranes and bioenergetics, gene structure and expression, and other fields of biochemistry.

Established in 1958, the Polish Biochemical Society is the home of initiatives like the society’s annual Jakub K. Parnas Prize.

As Publishing Perspectives readers know, the houses that produce the scholarly journals of scientific and medical societies are often rather quaintly referred to as “society publishers,” sometimes misunderstood by lay people as a reference to celebrities and fashion. Many academic and scholarly research projects and magazines emanate from such societies and as Oxford University Press’ Rhodri Jackson told us in an interview with him last autumn, some three-quarters of OUP’s journals are published on behalf of such societies.

In short, “society journals” are a significant part of the open-access-journal business being reflected this week in Springer Nature’s report on its progress and the messaging from the Plan S program about the conversion of business models and industry culture to open access. Predictably, the competition among publishers for contracts to make these societies’ journals “transformative,” meaning into open-access models, is considerable.

To this end, Frontiers, like Springer Nature and other major academic research publishers, produces its own promotional “progress reports,” and you can peruse one here now—this is Frontiers’ 2021 progress report.

The Polish Biochemical Society, in fact, now is joining Frontiers’ growing list of “publishing partners”—some industries would call these clients–in biology and medicine, including the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine, the Biomedical Research Center of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, the Institute of Biomedical Science, and more.

A graphic in which Switzerland’s Frontiers indicates it had some 1.5 billion views and downloads in 2021. Image: Frontiers, 2021 ‘progress report’

More from Publishing Perspectives on open access is here, and more on scholarly and academic publishing is here, and more on scholarly journals is here.

About the Author

Porter Anderson

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Porter Anderson has been named International Trade Press Journalist of the Year in London Book Fair's International Excellence Awards. He is Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. He formerly was Associate Editor for The FutureBook at London's The Bookseller. Anderson was for more than a decade a senior producer and anchor with, CNN International, and CNN USA. As an arts critic (Fellow, National Critics Institute), he was with The Village Voice, the Dallas Times Herald, and the Tampa Tribune, now the Tampa Bay Times. He co-founded The Hot Sheet, a newsletter for authors, which now is owned and operated by Jane Friedman.