Choosing Your Journal

There are several journals that focus on Civil and Environmental Engineering that I only started looking through after I made some progress in my research. This began when my supervisor asked me to search for a journal myself that suits my research the most, which I thought is challenging. So, I asked him to help me with some tips in this process, which I believe are very useful to share:

  1. Read the aims of the journal and find out if the address your research topic or not.
  2. Check the journals key words or subject areas for any overlap with your research.
  3. Check out the journals that most of your cited work is from.
  4. Look at the journal’s impact factor.

After using those tips, I developed a table with a list of the most suitable ones for my research. We finally chose a journal called ‘Sustainability’ which was developed by the Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI). This is an academic open-access publisher with headquarters in Basel, Switzerland.  Their main purpose is to encourage researchers to publish their research in as much detail as possible to “promote scientific predictions of global change and development”. Its scope is centered around various aspects of sustainability, for example, related to environmental aspects like air and water pollution and climate change or social aspects like population explosion and urbanization, or socio-economic aspects like environmental awareness.

This journal addresses the fact that it is open access in many ways around its website. First, an open access logo was present on every page (an open lock). Then they addressed the fact that it’s an open access journal in a short paragraph that states that research articles, reviews and any other content is available to everyone free of charge. They also describe how they provide open access to their journal, which is by processing charges that are covered by the authors’ institutes or research funding bodies. Choosing which journal to publish your paper in requires some effort to be able to target the right audience and get the most readers and citations, and having an open access journal is part of making this decision.


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