Following my official appointment to this position in the end of January 2016, my name appeared as chief-editor of the Revista Portuguesa de Estudos Regionais (Portuguese Review of Regional Studies) in the issue published in May of that same year. Therefore, with the publishing of this present issue (issue number 45) a year has passed with me as the head of the journal.
Obviously, I am not alone in this mission of editing the journal since I can not only count on the work of RPER’s (Revista Portuguesa de Estudos Regionais) scientific committee, but also on the work of many other scholars, who have shown to be available for evaluating the papers submitted and to ensuring the success of the journal. I am sincerely grateful to all of them for their collaboration and support.
Looking to the performance of RPER during this period, I must highlight the following:
i) Between March 2016 and March 2017, 41 papers were submitted to the journal;
ii) The authors of the papers submitted were from 8 different countries in the world, and although the ones from Portugal and Brazil did play a major role, we also had some Asian and African authors among them;
iii) If we include issue 45, that is, issues 42, 43, 44 and 45, we have a total of twenty two published articles, some of which had been submitted before I was appointed as chief-editor; besides those papers, three other short essays, remembering the scientific work and the personal attributes of António Simões Lopes, the main founder of Regional Science in Portugal and an academic who played a leading role in the development of the Portuguese Section of the European Regional Science Association (APDR), the institution that owns RPER, have been included in issue 42; those essays were produced for the 19th Congress of the Associação Portuguesa para o Desenvolvimento Regional (APDR), which was hosted in Braga in the summer of 2013, some months after his death, following an invitation addressed to a few well-known Portuguese researchers of Regional Science;
iv) The articles published in the aforementioned four issues cover a vast area of research interests, going from industrial location, wage differentials, rural-urban migration, growth and regional convergence to clustering in the creative industry, tourism industry and local development, and local environmental sustainability issues; lately, issues regarding resources and environmental sustainability seem to have been attracting an increasing amount of researchers or, at least, those researchers seem to see RPER has an adequate means for its dissemination among the scientific community; we are glad whenever research embraces a territorial approach to the issues analysed;
v) By simply looking at the content of this issue (RPER 45) it is quite clear that the Brazilian Regional Science researchers also seem to have discovered our journal and they seem to find it an interesting platform for publishing their research; we could not be happier with such a result; therefore, our ambition of publishing research on Regional Science not just from Portuguese researchers but also from the rest of the world, either written in Portuguese, English or, even, in Spanish has become a reality; the language we write in should not be a barrier for making our research available to the scientific community and to all of those who have an interest in local and regional issues and policies;
vi) Envisaging to attract more research and getting better rates in the academic indexes, we are, of course, trying to increase the amount of papers published in English, and we are succeeding in that; in every one of our latest issues, quite a few papers in English were available, counting for half of all the papers published; in future, we plan to publish issues with all articles written in English, however we will not give up on publishing in Portuguese and Spanish, if the opportunity should arise.
More could be said regarding what we have achieved throughout this last year of RPER. Much more could be said on the things that we have not attained on that hard road to becoming a better rated and a better known worldwide scientific journal. It is an endless path. Not only I, but also those who, together with me, are a part of the journal’s scientific and managerial board, are committed to contributing towards it. That is the only thing that I am sure.
Long live Revista Portuguesa de Estudos Regionais!
J. Cadima Ribeiro