Entomology & Society News
Jeremy McNeil: The President's Address
There is no doubt that the joint meeting of the ESO and ESC, "Predating the Nation" was a great success, in large part to the great turnout of ESO members. However, I would be remiss if I did not give special thanks to outgoing President Skevington, the ESO Board, the outstanding ground zero team at Guelph and the members who did such an exceptional job organising the symposia. We will soon be announcing information about the date and venue for the 2014 meeting.
Nicole McKenzie (Secretary) and Angela Gradish (Editor of the Newsletter) have recently stepped down from their respective positions within the Society, and I would like to take this opportunity to thank them for their stellar service to the ESO.
One major issue being considered by the Board is the future of the Journal of the Entomological Society of Ontario (formerly know as the Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Ontario). The JESO is rather unique in that it has been published for over 140 years, making it one of the oldest entomological journals in the world. However, times are changing and despite the valiant efforts of several recent editors, submissions have declined significantly. Furthermore, the recent elimination of page charges not only failed to increase the number of papers submitted but also raised the possibility of a financial liability if we continue to produce a printed version of the journal. There are a number of non-mutually exclusive reasons for the observed decline, including a proliferation of venues to publish, the attention being given to the impact factor when authors select where to publish and the decline in the number of libraries buying subscriptions of lower ranking journals.
A small committee, headed by Brent Sinclair, has been struck to study the options available to the ESO. These range from closing up shop (as has happened with a number of other local/regional publications) or making a major effort to find a suitable niche area of subjects to be covered, format (electronic) and having it listed in suitable databases. Clearly, the former is easy but given the history of the journal this decision should not be undertaken lightly. In contrast, if one would like to see the JESO continue for another century it will require an effort from all ESO members. The most obvious way is to submit manuscripts but in the short term the Board would also like to have your thoughts on this issue-please email your comments to Brent at email@example.com.
Unless you have been on an extended field trip with absolutely no form of communication with the outside world you have heard discussions concerning the muzzling scientists and the closing of scientific libraries. While scientists are speaking out, it is necessary that members of the Canadian public also make their views known although many would say they know little about science and thus really do have an opinion. And this leads me to a second ESO initiative, science outreach, that will help us let the world know what we do and why it is important. In September 2013, several colleagues in Ottawa organised "Bug Day" for the general public that offered a variety of activities including guided walks, presentation of live insects and interactive displays. The ESO is hoping that similar activities can be initiated in other areas of the province for 2014, so any members interested in organising or participating in such activities should let me know (firstname.lastname@example.org).
" . . . Predating the Nation
was a great success . . ."
ESO President Jeremy McNeil
Past President Jeff Skevington
President-Elect Ian Scott