30 September 2008

Philippine Journals on the Web

Less than four months in existence, the Philippine Journals Online project has succeeded in dramatically increasing the readership of scholarly journals published in the Philippines.

This is clear from a report by the London-based International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications (INASP), which is funding the initial year of the project in cooperation with a Canada-based computer server.

From June 1 to August 31, the philjol.info website counted 20,695 downloads, coming from 122 countries, of articles from Philippine journals. I do not have the figures yet for all the journals on the site, but I have those for the journals published by De La Salle University (DLSU).

The Journal of Research in Science, Computing and Engineering had 461 downloads.

The Asia-Pacific Social Science Review had 660 downloads.

The DLSU Business & Economics Review had 678 downloads.

The Asia Pacific Education Researcher had 917 downloads.

Ideya had 1,228 downloads.

Malay had 10,977 downloads.

All in all, the DLSU journals had 14,921 downloads.

There are some interesting observations that can be made from these statistics.

First, the DLSU journals account for 72.1% of all downloads from Philippine journals. (Allow me to boast a little bit about this, because I manage these journals.)

Second, since DLSU prints at most 600 hard copies of each journal, it is clear that web publication is a much cheaper and more effective way to reach scholars around the world. Even a journal displayed on a university library shelf (usually, only the current issue is displayed anyway) is much less visible than one on a website, where it is searchable by Google Scholar or even plain Google.

Third, Malay is published in Filipino. Its articles cover many fields of scholarship, including mathematics, the sciences, the social sciences, and the humanities. Since the number of downloads of Malay is more than half the number of total downloads of all Philippine journals, it is clear that Filipino is the scholarly language of choice of scholars around the world interested in the Philippines.

It cannot be said that it is our OFWs in 122 countries that are downloading Malay. The articles are heavy, academic stuff, many of them written in jargon comprehensible only to university researchers. Clearly, the OFW audience for these articles is minimal. Instead, readers of scholarly journals are usually university professors writing their own articles and looking for fresh data or new theories.

Fourth, the numbers of downloads and downloading countries are simply amazing. The Philippines is starting to attract scholarly attention.

Here are the 26 journals currently on the website: Asia-Pacific Social Science Review, Augustinian, Budhi: A Journal of Ideas and Culture, DLSU Business & Economics Review, Emilio Aguinaldo College Research Bulletin, Far Eastern University Communication Journal, Far Eastern University English Language Journal, Hapag: A Journal of Interdisciplinary Theological Research, Ideya, Journal of Research in Science, Computing and Engineering, Kritika Kultura, Kritike: An Online Journal of Philosophy, Loyola Schools Review, Malay, Mindanao Law Journal, Philippine Computing Journal, Philippine Information Technology Journal, Philippine Journal of Neurology, Philippine Journal of Psychology, Philippine Journal of Public Administration, Philippine Population Review, Philippine Sociological Review, Philippine Studies, Tambara, The Asia Pacific Education Researcher, The Philippine Scientist.

Note that there are two ISI-listed journals on the website: The Asia Pacific Education Researcher (DLSU) and The Philippine Scientist (University of San Carlos). Being on the ISI list means being one of the most frequently cited journals in the world.

Other ISI-listed journals based in the Philippines (but still not on the website) are Asian and Pacific Migration Journal, Philippine Agricultural Scientist (UPLB), Philippine Entomologist (UPLB), Philippine Journal of Crop Science, Philippine Journal of Science (DOST), Philippine Journal of Veterinary Medicine (UPLB), Philippine Political Science Journal (UP Diliman), and Sabrao Journal of Breeding and Genetics. If the editors of these journals want to be on the website, they can visit http://www.philjol.info/.

(First published in The Philippine Star, 25 September 2008.)


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