From the Editor
Welcome to the Journal of International Agricultural and Extension Education (JIAEE). And then there were none. With apologies to Agatha Christie, this issue marks the last of my six- year service as Editor of the JIAEE. I have enjoyed this journey. True to the oft-used adage from my Peace Corps Volunteer days in the mid-1980s, “you’ll learn so much more than you can teach here in Guatemala,” I have learned so much more than I could have taught during these past six years. One example of my learning in found in the excellent addition to our Seminal Article Series (pp. 5-15) authored by Dr. Barbara Ludwig; please take time to read her article, and then make a commitment to make your own changes in 2008 and beyond.
Producing great scholarship requires everyone’s efforts in improving the quality of manuscripts submitted for review, and the rigor with which those manuscripts are reviewed. The JIAEE had an acceptance rate of 50% in 2002 (my first year as editor) and has improved to 25.4% in 2006; currently, it is at 18% for 2007. The six-year average acceptance rate has remained steady at 33% for more than 340 manuscripts reviewed since 2002. While it may be interesting to reminisce about other changes in the JIAEE over the past six years, I would rather look ahead to a promising future.
The JIAEE editorship is being transferred into the capable hands of Drs. James Lindner and Kim Dooley (see page 111 for contact information), faculty members at Texas A&M University. On a positive note, their offices are close to mine, meaning their learning curves may be much flatter than mine when I became editor in 2002. On a negative note, their offices are close to mine. Seriously, I think the close proximity between outgoing and incoming editors is beneficial for the JIAEE. Already, we have collaborated on decisions about incoming manuscripts for peer review. Historical databases, letters, past reviews, publishing materials and contacts can be easily shared between offices. Another benefit comes from our continued use of the online manuscript submission and peer review process through Manuscript FastTrack®.
I would be remiss if I didn’t take this opportunity to thank several individuals for their guidance and assistance during my tenure as JIAEE editor. Dr. John Richardson, thank you for convincing me that I was capable of providing this service. Dr. Nick Place, thanks for convincing me that after the original first three-year term, I could further improve the JIAEE with a sustained effort in a second three-year term. Other inspirational mentors who made this journey a pleasant experience include Drs. Jack Elliot, David Acker, Matt Baker, Barbara Ludwig, Wade Miller, Dermot Ruane, Larry Miller, Gustav Düvel, and James Christiansen. Thank you to all JIAEE board members for helping raise its level of scholarship and notoriety. Also, my home department, Agricultural Leadership, Education, and Communications at Texas A&M University helped much in the production of the JIAEE.
Finally, thank you to all JIAEE contributors and reviewers for assisting in the production of this and all other issues over the past six years. Please continue doing what you can to promote greater understanding of agricultural and extension education worldwide.
Gary J. Wingenbach, Editor
Journal of International Agricultural and Extension Education