Editor Spotlight: Mashael Al-Namaeh on Streamlining Publication, Open Access, and Advice for Early Career Researchers 

Editor Spotlight: Mashael Al-Namaeh on Streamlining Publication, Open Access, and Advice for Early Career Researchers 

Mashael Al-Namaeh photo

In academic publishing, editors play a crucial role in shaping the discourse and dissemination of knowledge. For this edition of our Editor Spotlight, we had the privilege of speaking with Dr. Mashael Al-Namaeh, O.D., Ph.D.: an Associate Professor and Clinical Director of Research at the Clinical Virtual Research Center, Adjunct Professor at Kentucky College of Optometry, University of Pikeville, and founder of the Clinical Virtual Research Center Journal of Ophthalmology – available now on ScienceOpen! 

Inspiration and Mission 

Clinical Virtual Research Center Journal of Ophthalmology logo

When asked about her inspiration to found her own journal, Dr Al-Namaeh shared that it was a series of invitations to serve as a guest editor that ignited her interest. “It triggered me to establish our open-access journal, aiming to streamline the publication process for researchers.” Al-Namaeh expressed concern over the prevalent delays in the publication process, with some journals taking months or even years to reach editorial decisions. She intends to address this issue by prioritizing efficiency without compromising quality.

The purpose of this journal is to make the publishing process easier and faster, in addition to including only high-quality articles. 

Al-Namaeh’s Editorial Approach and Decision-making 

Dr. Al-Namaeh emphasizes the importance of high-quality articles in the editorial process of the Clinical Virtual Research Center Journal of Ophthalmology. “Once you read the abstract, you should be able to determine whether to move forward with the review process or decline based on your prior experience,” she explained. A selective approach from the beginning streamlines the review process and ensures that only articles with sufficient academic merit are considered for publication.  

Dr. Al-Namaeh also leads Vision Science, a topical collection on ScienceOpen with the goal of establishing a community for researchers and clinicians in ophthalmology, optometry, and visual sciences.

In discussing the importance of open access, Dr. Al-Namaeh highlights its role in facilitating access to research findings. “Researchers can more easily read the article without having to pay a fee,” she pointed out. By eliminating financial barriers, open access reenforces the dissemination of knowledge, benefiting both researchers and the broader community.

Advice for Early Career Researchers 

For early career researchers navigating the academic landscape, Dr. Al-Namaeh offers valuable advice. “I would encourage them to publish case reports and review articles, at least twice a year,” she suggested. “This allows early career researchers to update themselves with the latest information in their specialty.”  

Call for Papers 

Share your research and contribute to advancing knowledge in eye health! The Clinical Virtual Research Center Journal of Ophthalmology welcomes submissions from all areas of ophthalmology, optometry, and visual science. Authors can submit manuscripts directly through ScienceOpen (learn how to here). 

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