College of Agriculture, Engineering
and Science (CAES)

Geology Professor Recognised for Editorial Excellence in Springer Journal

Springer Nature recently released a list of editors across a range of qualifying journals where authors rated their publishing experiences in 2019 highly, and falling within the top 25% of journals was Natural Resources Research (NRR), edited by UKZN’s Professor Emmanuel John Carranza of the Discipline of Geological Sciences.

Authors indicated their satisfaction with the role of editorial advice and comments in improving their submissions, and in the skill of the editors in managing the review process. Springer Nature commended the editors for their contributions, dedication, hard work, and passion in the pursuit of advancing research.

Springer Nature journals are described by the publishers as an essential resource for researchers. As a leading publisher of the world’s most prestigious journals and a prominent voice in scholarly communications, Springer Nature serves as a partner committed to providing the community with a diverse portfolio and boast of providing inventive and transparent solutions which promote the highest quality standards in research and advance accessibility and dissemination.

Carranza has been Editor-in-Chief of NRR since September 2012, and has endeavoured to provide a positive publishing experience for authors by ensuring that peer-review is done swiftly and professionally, ensuring a high quality result and providing effective editorial communication, advice and management. He also helped obtain NRR’s first impact factor of 3.094 in 2018.

Carranza ensures he checks submissions for the quality of their readability and science before sending them out for review and rejects papers he regards as poorly conceptualised or written before the peer-review step, thereby keeping the journal’s average number of days from submission to first decision low (currently at 40 days) and ensuring reviewers are content.

Carranza keeps track of and invites only reviewers who provide constructive reviews, and in the review process works to ensure authors can improve their ability to compose good papers. He noted that identifying reviewers who have sufficient expertise and time to dedicate to the process was a continual challenge.

To keep the lines of communication open and flowing, Carranza prioritises prompt and polite responses to authors’ queries about any issues regarding paper(s) submitted for publication, and is mindful about keeping authors satisfied with the publication process.

Even with this recognition, Carranza acknowledged there was room for improving the editorial process.

Carranza joined UKZN in 2017 after working at the James Cook University in Australia as an associate professor and then adjunct associate professor. He was also a visiting professor at the Institute of Geosciences, the State University of Campinas in São Paulo, Brazil.

He was recently appointed the Vice-President of the Association of Applied Geochemists, of which he has been a member since 1991. He became a full professor at UKZN in 2018, and has worked at the forefront of research in predictive modelling of mineral prospectivity. He published a book titled: Geochemical Anomaly and Mineral Prospectivity Mapping in GIS, and edited 10 special/thematic articles in geoscience journals.

His expertise is in mineral exploration geochemistry and mineral prospectivity modelling, applying spatial mathematics/statistics, geographic information systems and geological remote sensing to predicting mineral prospectivity, and estimating undiscovered mineral endowment through an understanding of relevant mineral systems.

Carranza has authored more than 200 articles in international peer-reviewed scientific journals, and contributed more than 80 presentations to international geoscience conference proceedings.

Words: Christine Cuénod

Photograph: Supplied