The University of Manitoba has been hosting the Open Journal System (OJS) to help with the online review process free of charge.  The OJS was developed by a consortium of universities to provide a web-based platform for open-access journals to manage and host their journals.  Over the past three years, I have customized and updated most of the pages in the OJS system to help with the review process of papers submitted to our journal.  The system has reduced time spent on sending reminders and writing emails.  It also allowed the electronic management of manuscripts from diverse locations.  The OJS platform has worked reasonably well with no financial cost to the CSBE-SCGAB. 

Despite the introduction of the online system, the time to publish has not decreased significantly. Major bottlenecks are the difficulty in finding reviewers and dismally slow reviewer response time.  This is a universal problem faced by many journals.  In our case, this may be because of the lack of personal connection to the reviewers in all of the areas.  Since the reviewers are anonymous, there is not much credit being given to their time input.  Based on informal discussion and trends in other journals, it was decided to expand the Editorial Board to include four persons in each of the eight topic areas of publication.   The present Associate Editors will serve as the Section Editors with management level access to the Open Journal System (OJS).  When papers are submitted to the journal, the Section Editors will assign it to three other persons on the Editorial Board to review the paper through the OJS online system.  Those assigned the paper can either review the paper themselves or get it reviewed via a personal email to one of their colleagues who are more likely to oblige to review in a timely manner.  Each person serving on the Editorial Board is expected to review about 6 to 8 papers in a year.  All the Members of the Editorial Board will get formal recognition through their names being published in the inside front cover of the CBE Journal. If you are interested in serving on the Editorial Board, please contact the Section Editors who are listed below:

1.  Soil and Water Systems Engineering:  Dr. Mano Krishnapillai, Memorial University, NL

2.  Machinery Systems Engineering:  Dr. Hubert Landry, PAMI, SK

3.  Bioprocessing Systems Engineering:  Dr. Valerie Orsat, McGill

4.  Biological Systems Engineering:  Dr Stefan Cenkowski, UofMb

5.  Building Systems Engineering: Dr. Qiang Zhang, UofMb

6.  Waste Management Engineering: Dr. Grant Clark, McGill

7.  Information Systems Engineering: Dr. Jiten Paliwal, UofMb

8.  Renewable Energy:  Dr. Amit Kumar, UofAlberta


The Section Editors will also serve as the Technical Committee of our Society to help with the evaluation of the conference paper abstracts, formulate Technical Sessions, and solicit worthy papers for submission to the CBE journal.  Hopefully, these changes will help decrease the time to publish and increase the number of quality papers submitted to the journal for publication.

Another area that needs attention is the Impact Factor of our papers.  I have taken steps to increase the profile of our papers by increasing the visibility of the papers in our journal.  If we want to improve the impact factor, we need to go electronic and make it easily visible and “findable” to others.   Two approaches were followed.

1.    Funding from CSBE-SCGAB Foundation I trained a student to do the scanning and cataloguing of Volumes 1 to 30 under my close supervision.  Theses papers were processed through an optical character recognition (OCR) system so they are fully searchable within the entire paper with any word.  Many other journals are searchable only by keywords and words in the abstract.  Our papers are searchable in the entire body of the paper.   Please fee free to access the search page and try it out.  You will notice two versions of the papers exist.  The OCR version is the fully searchable version.  However, there may be minor errors in the OCR process which substitutes “1” for “l” etc.   If in doubt, you can access the “.raw” file which is an image file to verify.  Volumes 31 through 42 still needs to be done.  Our papers began online publication with Volume 43. 

2.    In 2012, the Canadian Biosystems Engineering Journal was registered with CrossRef (www.crossref.org) as a member organization allowing the assigning of Digital Object Identifier (DOI) to a paper published in our journal (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_object_identifier).  The DOIs are indexed by a large number of indexing services that give worldwide exposure to our papers.  The latest monthly report from CrossRef shows over 85 million DOIs were accessed in the month of May 2013 alone!  So, we are now part of a very large indexing system.  Beginning in Volume 54 (2012) we have started assigning DOI numbers and here are the DOIs for the published papers in Volume 54:












I have used the following system to identify our papers.  The http://dx.doi.org is the DOI resolving website. The number 10.7451 identifies our journal.  Following that, I have used CBE.year.volume.first_page_number as the format to identify each paper.  When you type this URL into a web browser, it will take you directly to the .pdf file of the paper.  Beginning in Volume 55, as a condition of assigning DOI numbers to our papers, I will have to include the existing DOIs of all the references at the end of each paper.  Those who are accessing our papers on the web will have live links to those references in our papers giving them easy access to those papers as well.  This makes our papers more valuable to the reader and help increase the impact factor.  I will also get a report from CrossRef with the access statistics for each of our papers.   All of these improvements will promote wider exposure to the papers published in our journal. 

I thank all the authors, reviewers, and the Associate Editors for their support in making the publication of our journal possible.  We need your continued support in a timely manner to make our journal a successful vehicle for disseminating your research. 

Published in Journal editor reports