NEW GUIDELINES FOR RIAS:  REVIEW OF INTERNATIONAL AMERICAN  STUDIES ON-LINE JOURNAL SPONSORED BY IASA.  Approved by the Executive Council in March 2009

Editorial Structure

Editor in Chief (responsible for the Journal’s standing and position in the academic world, and for the overall scholarly quality of the Journal.

2 Associate Editors—collaborate with the Editor in Chief in soliciting, selecting, and developing outstanding content for the Journal.

PR Associate (responsible for the promotion of the Journal and its mission)

Book Review Editor-determines which books get reviewed and solicits appropriate reviewers from around the world.  Ensures that the reviews reflect geographic and disciplinary diversity in both books to be reviewed and in reviewers.

2 Copy Editors (responsible for proofreading the Journal before it is typeset – these could be graduate students)

Editorial Board made up of 8-10 members (should be leading scholars and should also be geographically representative, gender-inclusive, and represent a variety of disciplinary specialties.

Advisory Board:  the IASA Executive Council will function as the Advisory Board for the journal working with the Editors and the Editorial board to shape the overall intellectual trajectories of the Journal over time to ensure it reflects the goals of IASA.  In addition to securing a close articulation between the journal and the organization, this structure will also continually refresh the range of participants since the constitution of the board changes somewhat every two years as a portion of the Executive Council members complete their terms and eligibility..

Criteria for Inclusion in Editorial Board

a) willingness to serve;

b) previous editorial experience;

c) knowledge of the field and contacts with other scholars and associations;

d) all continents should be represented,

e) whenever possible, at least three languages of the Americas (English, Spanish, French, or Portuguese) should be represented

f) different fields/disciplines should be represented

Functions of the Editor-in-chief and of the Editorial Board

Editorial policies should be determined by the Editor-in-chief, with guidance from Associate Editors and the Editorial Board as needed. Given the international scope and structure of the Journal, one of the crucial goals of the Board, and especially of the Editor and her/his associates, will be to generate interest amongst a variety of scholars from a variety of different locations.

Refereeing and referees

Pieces submitted for publication should be initially screened by either the Editor or an Associate Editor, or a designated (by the Editor) Editorial Board Member, and then, if deemed appropriate for publication (as is or with revisions), they should be sent to a specialist, preferably a member of the Editorial Board or of the Advisory Board (IASA Executive Council). Hopefully, there will be several specialists on the Board, but if the right person cannot be found, then the article should be sent to an outside referee. If the piece successfully goes through the initial screening but is turned down by the second reader,  the editorial team may decide that a third reader is advisable, depending also on the objections raised by the second reader. At any rate, the final decision should always rest with the Editor.

While obviously the quality and originality of articles should be the main criteria for selection, the Journal should also have an explicit commitment to publishing works by writers from a wide range of locations and disciplines. 

Since the recourse to outside referees would inevitably slow down the review process, the use of outside referees should be as limited as possible.

All research articles should be refereed; other material (e.g., feedback, comments, reports, fora, debates, etc.) need not be refereed but only screened and edited by the Editor and the board.

Review policy:  The review process will be double-blind: the reader should not be aware of the author’s name, and vice-versa.

Desired Timeliness: The time between receipt of article and decision should be a maximum of 4 months. The time between acceptance of article and publication should not exceed six months, except in the case of special issues which may be on a different timetable.

Appointments to the Editorial and Advisory Boards

Members of the Publications Committee will propose nominations and present brief c.v.’s of nominees for the Editorial Board—these would then be forwarded to IASA Executive for confirmation/selection.

Open nominations process: To generate a pool of possible nominees, the Publication Committee will solicit names from the membership in an open call and will also ask the IASA Executive Council to suggest potential nominees.  From among these, the Publications Committee will recommend a final slate for the Executive Council’s consideration.  Once the Editorial Board has been nominated and the final composition determined by the Executive Council, that Editorial board will select two Associate Editors from among a field of candidates.   To ensure the widest possible participation, candidates will be identified in several ways:  Prospective Associate Editors could be nominated by the Editor in Chief, propose themselves during the open call from the Publications Committee to the general membership, or members of the Editorial Board could also come forward and ask to be voted in.