This year we spent considerable time and effort evaluating different publishing and editorial approaches aimed at improving our Journal of Laser Applications® (JLA). We evaluated proposals from a commercial publisher and our current, not-for-profit publisher, and concluded that a new agreement with our current publisher, the American Institute of Physics (AIP) is in the best interest of our authors, members and our society. Key features of the new agreement, commencing in January 2011 are as follows;

The Journal will be on-line only in 2011 – Consistent with current trends in publishing worldwide, we will switch to an on-line only format next year. All members and subscribers will receive a reminder of their log-in information when the first issue of 2011 is ready, and everyone is encouraged to activate their subscription and check it out.

JLA will reach more libraries and more readers – Under the new agreement, AIP is mounting a marketing campaign to significantly increase the number of institutional libraries subscribing to JLA. This will ensure greater readership for authors and, in time, improved financial performance for our society.

JLA website will feature greater functionality – One of the many new features is full-text HTML rendering, direct from XML. Through inline reference links and the ability to enlarge tables and figures by clicking on them, JLA articles will virtually lift off the page in a highly interactive presentation that transforms the traditional scholarly article, helping to speed reading and research. Among the new features are enhanced search functions with more options and better controls to explore returned content with faceted results. Faceted search helps researchers find information quickly by presenting them with a set of “filters” to narrow down search results.

Peer x-Press will speed up the review process – Starting early next year we will start using AIP’s Peer x-Press On-line Manuscript Submission and Peer Review system that will facilitate review and improve time to print.

JLA will now have eight sections, each with its own Associate Editor – Editor-in-Chief Reinhart Poprawe has subdivided the Journal into eight sections and has recruited a world-class lineup of associate editors to head up each section.

• High Precision Materials Processing with Ultrafast Lasers Andreas Ostendorf

• Laser Additive Manufacturing – Milan Brandt

• High Power Materials Processing with High Brightness Lasers – Eckhard Beyer

• Emerging Applications of New Wavelengths and Temporal Pulse Shaping – Martin Richardson

• Surface Modification – Minlin Zhong

• Lasers in Nanomanufacturing/Nanophotonics & Thin Film

Technology – Yongfeng Lu

• Spectroscopy/Diagnostics/Measurements – Dave Farson

• Safety – Dave Sliney

JLA will still be free to members – In contrast to some of the proposals we studied, the new agreement with AIP provides that members will still receive the Journal as a free member benefit.