January 2017 – HSS News

HSS Editor Search: Review of Preliminary Proposals Begins 1 March 2017

The Society’s Editor, H. Floris Cohen, will be finishing his term in June 2019. The next Editor is to be elected by the History of Science Society Council in June 2018, for a term from 1 July 2019 to 20 June 2024. (The year after the new Editor is elected is designed to allow for a smooth transition.)

In accordance with HSS procedures, the search for the new Editor will be undertaken by the Committee on Publications (CoP). The Committee requests that expressions of interest in the position of Society Editor be sent to: Michael Gordin, Chair of the Committee on Publications (mgordin@princeton.edu); Bernie Lightman, Vice-President and Executive Committee Representative to the Committee on Publications (lightman@yorku.ca); or Jay Malone, HSS Executive Director (jay@hssonline.org). Information about the requirements of the position can be found below. We especially encourage any interested folks to contact Bernie Lightman, Jay Malone, or Floris Cohen (H.F.Cohen@uu.nl) to discuss particulars.

Since 2014, Floris Cohen and his team have maintained the highest standards for Isis, and the Descartes Centre at the University of Utrecht has provided a wonderful home for the editorial offices of the Society. We now once again seek someone with an excellent reputation as a research scholar in the history of science who is at an institution that can partner with the History of Science Society in supporting the Editorial Office. Potential applicants may consider whether a bid can be developed in collaboration with more than one home institution.

Information for potential candidates to be Society Editor and Editor of Isis.

  1. This position has a five-year renewable term.
  2. The next Society Editor will be recommended by the HSS Committee on Publications, consisting of five members appointed by the Executive Committee serving staggered terms of five years, plus the Vice President, serving ex officio. Discussions with potential Editors and their institutions will take place throughout the fall of 2016 and winter of 2017. Preliminary written proposals for staffing and financing of the Editorial office should be submitted to the Committee on Publications by potential Editors and their associate editors and institutions by 1 March 2017. The Committee on Publications will review preliminary proposals in April 2017 and send out queries to potential candidates during April and May 2017. Revised and complete proposals need to be submitted by 1 October 2017. The Committee on Publications will interview candidates during the 9-12 November 2017 HSS meeting in Toronto. A subcommittee of the Committee on Publications will make site visits to finalists’ institutions in the winter/spring of 2017-2018. The HSS Council will evaluate the recommendation and make its final decision in order to have the HSS Executive Committee announce the selection of the new Society and Isis Editor in the July 2018 HSS Newsletter.
  3. It is anticipated that Isis during the term of the next Editor will be published for the Society by the University of Chicago Press, to which the journal was moved in the spring of 1991. A Memorandum of Agreement covers the relations of the History of Science Society and the University of Chicago Press with regard to the publication of Isis. This contract will be subject to review during the term of the new Editor.
  4. The Society Editor is an Officer of the History of Science Society, and, as such, serves as an ex officio non-voting member of the Executive Committee and of Council. As an Officer, the Society Editor is expected to attend Council meetings and Committee on Publications meetings held at the annual meeting and also Executive Committee meetings which, in recent years, have occurred twice a year, once before the annual meeting of the Society and a second time, approximately 6 months after the annual meeting. The Executive Committee also acts ad interim during the course of the year, proposes the budget, etc. The Society Editor serves as the Editor of Isis and also oversees Osiris, the annual bibliography, as well as any other publications produced by the Society.
  5. As Editor of Isis, the Society Editor is expected to recommend Isis Advisory Editors to three-year terms (with possible renewal), the numbers and expertise of such editors to be determined by the Editor and ratified by CoP. There will be Advisory Editors in office who continue from Floris Cohen’s term as Editor into the next term.
  6. The History of Science Society expects to be able to support the editing of Isis by providing funding for the salaries of a Managing Editor, a Manuscript Editor, for office supplies, and for part of the course release for the Book Review Editor(s). The Editor’s institution, in turn, is expected to support the Isis editorial office to a significant degree. Candidates will need to submit a tentative budget and can obtain the current budget from Jay Malone (jay@hssonline.org).

Congratulations to the New Doctors

During a history conference, I was sharing a room with a recent postdoc, and he confided in me his difficulty in renewing his membership in HSS given the sizable difference between what students pay and the regular member rate. This to me seemed an opportunity both to celebrate a significant achievement and to encourage scholars to maintain (or begin) their membership in the HSS. The Society thus created a free e-membership for those who received their PhD in the prior year and who are no longer eligible for student memberships. To claim your free membership, go to https://subfill.uchicago.edu/JournalPUBS/HSSpromotion.aspx. You will receive all of the regular benefits, including discounted meeting registration, and if you are already a member, your membership (electronic only) will be extended by one year at no cost.

—Jay Malone, HSS Executive Director

JSTOR for HSS Members

In its strategic plan, HSS identified professional development as one of our six goals. Specifically, the Society is focusing on supporting the “professional development of emerging history of science scholars in and outside the academy.” One of the ways in which the HSS can help our members advance their research and teaching is to facilitate access to the literature, and we are pleased to work with JSTOR to offer a 50% savings on a one year JPASS subscription for members. JPASS, available as monthly or yearly plans, allows you to read whatever journal article you like and enjoy up to 120 PDF downloads a year from the JSTOR archive, an archive with over 7 million articles from 2 thousand journals (including Isis and Osiris), representing some 50 academic disciplines.

In addition to past issues of Isis and Osiris, members may find the following journals of particular interest:

  • The British Journal for the History of Science
  • Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences
  • Science Progress
  • Science, Technology, & Human Values

JSTOR adds new titles to JPASS every month so you’ll have a growing collection of the world’s leading scholarly journals only a click away.

HSS members save 50% on a yearly JPASS: Sign up here.

New Reference Resource: IsisCB Cumulative

A new open access reference resource was released this month: IsisCB Cumulative, a digitized version of the Isis Cumulative Bibliography of the History of Science, spanning sixty years from 1913 to 1975. The full text is available as seven large HTML files corresponding to the seven volumes of the Isis Cumulative Bibliography covering that period.

  • IsisCB Cumulative is a companion to IsisCB Explore, a research tool launched last year that includes data from the Isis Bibliographies from 1974 to the present.
  • IsisCB Cumulative is the result of two years of effort that included scanning, transcribing, and encoding 5000 pages of text. The files contain nearly 154,000 citation records to works in the history of science, all of which are classified by historians of science and subject bibliographers. These include citations to about 83,000 articles, 44,000 books, 20,000 reviews, and 6,000 chapters.
  • The current release of these volumes as individual HTML files is meant to provide temporary access to the digitized data, which will eventually be added to the IsisCB Explore.
  • IsisCB Cumulative and IsisCB Explore contain data accumulated and published annually and semi-annually in the journal Isis since its founding. Established by George Sarton, this bibliography has been continued by various scholars and librarians, including John Neu, Magda Whitrow, Joy Harvey, and, currently, Stephen Weldon.
  • The online publication of IsisCB Cumulative was made possible by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the History of Science Society, the University of Oklahoma Libraries, and the University of Oklahoma History of Science Department. The digitization efforts were overseen by Stephen Weldon, Sylwester Ratowt, and Conal Tuohy. Tuohy (see his website) parsed the transcribed text and created the HTML file (gitHub for the project). For more information about the Isis bibliographies see the project’s website: http://isiscb.org/. Individuals can also contact Stephen Weldon, editor of IsisCB, directly at spweldon@ou.edu.