Ciência & Saúde Coletiva celebrates 10th anniversary!
In 1996, 10 years ago, overcoming management and financial difficulties, we launched the first issue of Ciência & Saúde Coletiva. At the time, I had the honor of chairing the Brazilian Association of Collective Health (ABRASCO), sharing its administration with Marilise B. Barros, Renato Veras, and Pedro Miguel dos Santos Neto. Based on a unanimous decision by the board of directors, I was put in charge of "giving birth" to the journal and nurturing it through its infancy and childhood.
Several colleagues initially feared that the journal might suffer a "premature death", considering the short average lifespan of scientific periodicals in Brazil. Yet this fear proved to be unfounded. There was a period of early infancy (1996-1997): the journal had to conduct an active search for collaborators, and its image was shaky and poor. There was a growth spurt: with an attractive, standardized layout, the journal started publishing regularly with two issues a year (1998-2001). And there was a shift towards consolidated growth: four issues a year and institutionalization of the journal's name and characteristics (2002-2005). Throughout this story, two institutions have been crucial to the success of this ten-year-old: FIOCRUZ and the Brazilian National Research Council (CNPq), the former with institutional support and the latter with financial resources. Aimed at maintaining and fostering the academic debate in the field of collective health, three of the four annual issues are thematically based and coordinated by guest editors, generally specialists and reference authors. The first article in each issue is always a debate, providing input to readers on the critique and idea of knowledge construction.
Ciência & Saúde Coletiva is currently indexed in the Scielo base (since 2002), as well as Lilacs, Latindex, Red ALCyC, CSA Sociological Abstract, and others. Each number includes some 22 to 25 articles (review, research, and opinion), in addition to the opening feature debate, which combines reflections by some 8 to 10 scientists. These data mean that some 100 researchers and other professionals take advantage of this medium to publish their research and reflections. In addition to Portuguese, Ciência & Saúde Coletiva includes collaborations by English, French, and Spanish-language authors. The journal's current circulation is 3,000, which can be considered a success, at least in Latin America. In addition to ABRASCO, there are some 400 institutional and individual subscriptions. The journal's office receives an average of 500 articles a year, requiring painstaking selection work by the ad hoc reviewers, associate editors, and editorial board.
All this publishing output consumes time, work, dedication, and money. The journal has received support from the successive boards of directors of ABRASCO and its executive secretariat. In daily practice, several key collaborators have helped guarantee the journal's success: Lília M. Vicentin, executive editor, who has managed the entire process of organizing the originals and communications with authors and the publishing team; Rosalina Gouveia, who standardizes the articles and conducts the revision in Portuguese; Christopher Peterson and Rosalina with the revision of the English-language abstracts; and Danowski Design, who designed and continues to guarantee the journal's perfect layout. And we could not overlook Péricles Silveira da Costa, a constant collaborator who has provided his boundless experience and solidarity through the journal's ten years.
For 2005, our plans are to modernize the journal's management and invest in greater and fairer recognition for the contributions by our peer community. Long life to Ciência & Saúde Coletiva!
Maria Cecília de Souza Minayo