“Board members at an Elsevier journal are threatening to walk out over the publisher’s push to dramatically increase acceptances and its replacement of the editor in chief.
Peter Lloyd, professor of design methodology at the Delft University of Technology, was told in an email sent last month that his term as editor in chief of Design Studies was ending.
The change came without warning, although the executive publisher assigned to the journal said in a February message that the journal’s slow editorial and financial growth was “a recipe for closure.” …
It gets about 600 submissions a year, typically publishing around 35, a similar number to journals in the field of comparable quality.
But in the February email, executive publisher Lily Khidr set a target of publishing 250 papers in 2023. At the time, Lloyd pushed back on the target as “unrealistic” and said he wanted to grow acceptances to a more modest 50 a year….
“This focus on the quantity of published articles rather than their quality appears to be purely motivated by a desire for large profits,” he [Linden Ball] said….
The pushback follows mass resignations in April at the Elsevier journal NeuroImage, which was triggered by the publisher’s decision to raise article processing fees from $3,000 to $3,450. More than 40 editors announced in an open letter that they would leave and work with MIT Press to establish new nonprofit journal.
Lloyd told Times Higher Education that if Elsevier did not reverse its decision he would likely try to set up an alternative journal. “The shocking thing is the lack of consultation, the disrespect, the assumption that it’s just about numbers of papers,” he said….”