Professor Shahin Rahimifard, Editor-in-Chief of International Journal of Sustainable Engineering
Professor Rahimifard talks to us about the future of the journal as it progresses to open access, how the journal helps authors to make an impact with their research, and how the journal can help academic and industrial leaders achieve common goals.
What is International Journal of Sustainable Engineering about?
The inaugural issue of International Journal of Sustainable Engineering (IJSE) was published in January 2008 to provide a bespoke medium for sharing the research on innovative applications of engineering principles to support Sustainable Development, and to-date the journal has published papers by the international research community from 47 countries. The publisher and editors of IJSE have observed, with great excitement, the recent rapid growth in this research domain and are now developing new strategies around Open Access (OA) publication model to safeguard future progress of the journal.
What is the journal looking to achieve?
The successful mobilisation of international research and development community during the COVID pandemic, through seamless sharing of data and knowledge, has proven the potential for incredible achievements within an astonishingly short timeframe and has renewed hope in our ability to address global grand challenges. The IJSE aims to harness the spirit of this universal partnership to address the urgent wide-ranging climate change challenges faced by global community.
How is International Journal of Sustainable Engineering going to address problems in a new and innovative way?
There has been a growing desire by younger generation to take control of their future, and thanks to the ‘Greta Thunberg effect’, there is now a global togetherness and demand for actions against climate change. Inevitability with these exciting and positive developments come even greater responsibilities for Sustainable Engineering community to ensure that any additional emerging global resources is carefully directed at the most needed impactful changes, to share the new findings and technologies for immediate largescale global adoption and to train the future academic and industrial leaders, capable of implementing these changes to achieve our common goals.
What are future plans for International Journal of Sustainable Engineering?
The IJSE plans to foster the immediate and widescale dissemination of research results through adoption of an ‘Open Access’(OA) model. Every IJSE submissions will continue to be subject to the usual vigorous reviewing process, and to help with this process, Professor Antonella Petrillo and Professor Sekar Vinodh have been appointed new Associate Editors of IJSE. We have also invited new members to join the IJSE Editorial Board and will be recruiting more members based on the areas of growth in OA submissions.
We’re transitioning International Journal of Sustainable Engineering to full open access. How do you see open access publication shaping sustainable engineering research and why is this important for the Journal’s future?
The many advantages of a full Open Access model include the dissemination of new knowledge rapidly and widely which could in turn result in more real-life impacts, trigger new research directions, and be used as an ‘open educational resource’. This could also facilitate the establishment of a knowledge economy and provide a much-needed economic boost within both developed as well as developing countries.
Publishing in an OA journal is increasingly demanded by research organisations as a condition of funding and by academic organisations for seamless inclusion of their staff publications within institutional repositories, and therefore, a timely transition to OA model will safeguard the long-term future of IJSE.
What support can you give authors and researchers who are hoping to publish in your journal?
IJSE publisher and editors have taken every step to ensure that Author Processing Charges (APCs) associated with Open Access publication do not become a prohibiting factor for publication of high-quality papers through introduction of a very competitive pricing scheme as well as setting up a APC discount or waiver initiative.
What is the benefit of publishing in International Journal of Sustainable Engineering rather than in another related journal? In other words, what makes International Journal of Sustainable Engineering special?
The timely support for wide-ranging Sustainable Development challenges is only feasible through the cross fertilization of results from research within many related subject areas as part of a multidisciplinary approach. The uniqueness of IJSE stems from diversity of its publications, eminence of its authors, and thoroughness of its expert reviewers which has resulted in the rapidly growing journal reputation for detail, evidence-based field research, and high-quality publications.
What subject areas are you most excited to cover in the journal?
The IJSE focuses on publications which address specific engineering challenges within different life cycle stages from sustainable design and material preparation to sustainable production and consumption as well as end-of-life recovery and reprocessing, in particular those that are utilising the latest advances in digital technologies and process automation, artificial intelligence and multicriteria decision support, and are also supported by sustainable socioeconomic models for circular economy and product service systems.
What is one of the most memorable pieces of research you’ve published in the last few years?
The introduction of United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (UN-SDGs) has presented a framework to provide structure and future directions for research and development, and the recent IJSE publications that clearly address these goals have been received very well by our research community.
What advice would you give to an early career researcher about how to get a head start in their career/how to get published?
The urgency of addressing Sustainable Development challenges is shaping the expected and preferred research outcomes around the quality rather than quantity of publications. The emerging metrics on publication citation and research impact are rapidly replacing the traditional ones on total number of publications among potential employers and research funders.
How can someone who would like to publish in International Journal of Sustainable Engineering go about doing so?
There is a comprehensive description of the journal scope as well as a clear set of instructions for authors in the journal website. In addition, there is information on Open Access as well as the APC discount or waiver initiative for those interested in publishing in the International Journal of Sustainable Engineering.