Recently, CAST, MOE, MOST and the Central Propaganda Department published the Opinions on Deepening Reforms to Cultivate World Class S&T Journals. The document outlines 17 key tasks that will be implemented to make China, by 2035, a world leader in scientific journals with international influence. These include:
- Optimisation of the structure and layout of S&T journals and publications:
- Strengthen S&T journals in key basic fields such as mathematics, physics, chemistry, geosciences, life sciences, materials, and medicine, advancing institutional reforms and attracting a larger number of high-impact articles;
- Establishment of new journals in key emerging cross-cutting and strategic areas in line with the country’s development priorities, such as information, manufacturing, energy, space, oceans, biopharma;
- Promote the production and international popularisation of original articles written in Chinese language;
- Promote digitalisation and new-media development to create journals and publications with market competitiveness.
- Increase specialised management capacities of S&T journals:
- Adoption of a quality- and value-based performance evaluation dynamic mechanism. Strengthening of management models based on “three reviews, three comparisons” and anonymous peer review (“three reviews, three comparisons”, san shen san jiao, refers to three reviews conducted at different stages before the publication on an article; and to three rounds of comparisons made on lexis and wording);
- Establishment and optimisation of a credit and integrity system for articles and authors, with rapid detection mechanisms for cases of misconduct;
- Establishment of a global big data centre for S&T journals, articles, citations, experts, through the application of digitalisation and intelligent technologies; formulation of rational assessment standards and development of a global innovation index, in order to strengthen China’s voice on the global scientific scene.
- Increase market-based operation capacities of S&T journals:
- Encourage, in line with existing market entry policies, the involvement of private and industry actors in S&T journals, exploring “academia+industry”, “university+enterprise” and “research structure+enterprise” models especially in key strategic areas such as big data, artificial intelligence, industrial internet, intelligent manufacturing, new materials, new energy, and biopharma;
- Encourage, through national or local cultural industry development funds, collectivisations or restructuring of S&T journals;
- Increase the international competitiveness of S&T journals:
- Adoption of diversified methods, also through the publication of global scientific report in strategically selected fields, to support the creation of leading editing teams and of high-level editing committees and operational managers;
- Encourage S&T journals to expand international cooperation and to actively get involved in global scientific governance, also by supporting them to organise major international conferences, thus enhancing international competitiveness;
- Promote equivalence between domestic and international journals, by encouraging high-quality articles to be first published in Chinese domestic journals.