December 2003

Inside the Journal

By Robert H. Colson

The editorial team at The CPA Journal would like to thank all its editorial board members, its review board members, its ad hoc reviewers, and the many diligent professionals that create the articles the rest of us read. The Journal serves the CPA profession by encouraging analysis, discourse, and debate on the most important technical and professional issues in accounting and auditing, taxation, finance, management, technology, and professional responsibilities.

The Journal publishes three types of articles: feature-length analyses of interest to all CPAs; shorter, technical analyses in about two dozen departments; and opinion pieces and assessments of current affairs affecting CPAs in News & Views, edited by Thomas W. Morris. In the coming year the Journal will reorganize these articles into a more contemporary and focused look: Perspectives, In Focus, and Essentials. Beginning with this issue, to give our readers a concise, current snapshot of the economy, a new page, Economic & Market Data, will appear monthly.

The Journal operates primarily as a reviewed submission journal. Papers are submitted from the grassroots of the profession, whether from practice, academe, industry, government, regulatory agencies, standards setters, or retirement. After an editorial assessment for general appropriateness, most manuscripts are sent to two members of the editorial board, editorial review board, or ad hoc reviewers for a blind review (the reviewers do not know the author’s identity, and vice versa) on such dimensions as timeliness, relevance, innovativeness, readability, and technical accuracy. Reviewers can accept, reject, or request revisions from the authors based on the criteria above. Agreement with the author’s point of view or conclusions is not a review consideration. The Journal editors oversee the review process, make final determinations based on the reviews received, and schedule articles for publication in a way that covers current issues in the profession. The editors also offer significant writing assistance to achieve the crisp, concise, and straightforward style characteristic of the Journal. Authors receive page proofs of their articles for final approval before publication.

During the year between June 1, 2002, and May 31, 2003, the Journal received 340 submissions (199 in the previous period). Of those, 182 were eventually accepted, 83 were rejected, and 75 were returned to the authors for revisions. The average length of time in the review process was 61 days (76 in the previous period). The average article took approximately 149 days from the time of acceptance to the time of publication (132 in the previous period). Individuals with some academic affiliation submitted 163 articles; 177 submissions came from non-academics. The acceptance rate for submissions from academics was 46%; for non-academics, 60%.

The Journal editorial staff plans the content for a particular issue in the first week of the third month preceding the issue date. For example, the content for the January issue is determined in the first week in October from the inventory of available accepted articles. The production process for an issue requires approximately 45 days, with another 30 days editorial lead-time. The Journal typically “fast-tracks” an important article if timeliness is an issue, but the capacity for fast-tracking is limited to one or two items per issue.

The Journal’s editorial board members develop topics and solicit authors, review submissions, and participate in the annual Max Block distinguished article award program. The editorial and production staffs of the Journal are recognized each month, along with the editorial board, in the masthead and departmental masthead. In addition to these hard-working and dedicated individuals, the Journal has benefited in the past period from the services of the following ad hoc reviewers:

Alex B. Ampadu, Susan Anders, Marie Arrigo, Helen Bachman, Ian J. Benjamin, Wayne Berkowitz, Myron Blatt, Louis Braiotta, Stewart Buxbaum, Brian A. Caswell, Kenneth Cerini, Rona Cherno, Andrew Cohen, Morton Cohen, Debbie A. Cutler, Barry F. Doll, Mitchell Drossman, Robert Ecker, Susan Edwards, Robert Elliott, Mark Ellis, Frank Federmann, Allen Fetterman, Derek A. Flanagan, Peter H. Frank, Alan T. Frankel, Kenneth C. Gardiner, Stephen Grace, Dan M. Guy, Abraham Haspel, Gary Illiano, Mark O. Israel, Peter Karl, Robert Kawa, Don A. Kiamie, Mark Klein, Oscar Kolodzinski, Jerome Landau, Zev Landau, Mark Levin, Ford Levy, Martin J. Lieberman, Steven Lilien, Joseph E. Manfre, John McAllister, Steven R. Melletz, Florie Munroe, Mark Mycio, Ian Nelson, John E. Oehler, John J. O'Leary, Mary Ellen Oliverio, Larry Orsini, Jason Palmer, Brian K. Pearson, Marilyn A. Pendergast, Richard Piluso, David Pitcher, Jeffrey Pollack, Allan Rabinowitz, Alan Reinstein, Steven Rubin, Warren Ruppel, Robert Sack, Randy Schwartzman, Barry Seidel, Morris Shoretz, Mitchell J. Smilowitz, Robert Sohr, Charles A. Spector, Peter Spiess, William Stocker, Neil Tipograph, Miklos Vasarhelyi, Leonard J. Weinstock, and Margaret A. Wood.

Finally, I would like to thank all the readers that have given the Journal your input. This page has become a place where many guest editors have expressed their opinions and views. In addition, there have been many thoughtful reader responses that have appeared in News & Views. Your interest and participation are particularly appreciated.

Robert H. Colson, PhD, CPA
Editor-in-Chief, The CPA Journal

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The CPA Journal is broadly recognized as an outstanding, technical-refereed publication aimed at public practitioners, management, educators, and other accounting professionals. It is edited by CPAs for CPAs. Our goal is to provide CPAs and other accounting professionals with the information and news to enable them to be successful accountants, managers, and executives in today's practice environments.

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