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Update on ACS Publications’ Name Change Policy: Two Years Later

ACS Publications recognizes and respects that authors may change their names for many reasons during their academic careers including—but not limited to—gender identity, marriage, divorce, or religious conversion. As part of ACS Publications’ commitment to reducing barriers to inclusion, equity, and professional mobility, we implemented an inclusive name change policy in October 2020, offering a more inclusive and author-centric path to updating one’s name on prior publications. Over the last two years, we have updated approximately 400 published articles. In doing so, nearly 100 researchers have rightfully claimed ownership of their academic work under their lived names.

Though this policy benefits anyone who changes their name, we were originally motivated to update our policy in response to a call from the transgender scientific community. For many researchers, particularly those from the transgender community, name changes can be a sensitive issue. Submitting change requests can be taxing—emotionally and administratively—especially for researchers who have published in multiple journals or across publishers whose policies and procedures may vary.

To help address this burden, in 2021 ACS Publications announced a partnership with the U.S. National Laboratories as they implemented their name change policy. The partnership with all seventeen U.S. National Laboratories enables researchers to ask the National Laboratories to pursue name changes on their behalf directly with participating publishers. This streamlined process reduces the emotional toll often associated with name changes and the administrative burden involved in requesting name changes at multiple publishers or journals. Over the last year, we have been diligently working to honor this partnership. We have also been advancing other planned improvements to our policy and processes.

We’re pleased to share that we can now accept name change requests submitted by an approved institutional representative on behalf of an author. Through a revised request form, institutional representatives can submit all the necessary information for ACS to process the change. Authors must still update their ACS Paragon Plus profile and ORCiD, and they must be copied on the request and made available for questions if needed. More information for interested authors and institutional representatives can be found on our policy page and FAQs.

We continue to encourage authors to submit requests on their own behalf, if their institution does not have a name change policy or they do not want to involve an institutional representative. For authors, the revised form allows them to provide more relevant information from the start of the request and aims to minimize the burden on the author later in the process. ACS staff might still contact the author throughout the process as questions arise. 

Through efforts like ACS’ name change policy, ACS Publications is committed to promoting diversity, equity, inclusion, and respect (DEIR), identifying and dismantling barriers to success, and creating a welcoming and supportive environment so that all ACS contributors, members, employees, and volunteers can thrive. We continue to actively listen to the community on these issues and welcome your feedback on how we are doing. Please complete our Diversity Feedback form to share your comments.

Visit the ACS Publications Name Change Policy Page

Learn About Our Commitment to Advancing DEIR

Share Your Feedback With Us!

Looking Ahead: The Future of Open Access

This post is part of a five-part series published in celebration of International Open Access Week 2022. We encourage you to explore the entire series below, which offers valuable insights and resources in support of advancing transparency and inclusion in the scientific community through open access.

OPEN ACCESS WEEK 2022 BLOG SERIES
Celebrate Open Access Week 2022 with ACS Publications
Fostering a Climate of Open Science
Open Access Copyright and Licensing: A Guide for Authors
The Journey to Open Access: Past and Present
Looking Ahead: The Future of Open Access

The OSTP Memo: Shaking Up the Open Access Landscape in the US 

On August 25, 2022, the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) released a statement requiring US federal funding agencies to put plans in place that will ensure immediate public access to all research, including published articles and all underlying research data. The memo encouraged funding agencies to begin adjusting their policies immediately, with implementation in place by or before the end of 2025. 

The impact of the OSTP Memo is still somewhat unclear, and it remains to be seen exactly how this will affect funders, researchers, and publishers in chemistry and its related fields – particularly as the Senate Committee for Science, Space, and Technology has requested clarification on several key points from the OSTP’s new Director, Dr. Arati Prabhakar. While there have been no formal policy responses yet, many researchers are funded by organizations such as the National Science Foundation and the Department of Energy, and agencies’ responses are likely to mark a considerable change in how US-based researchers publish their work.  

“The announcement from OSTP represents a significant change in policy direction,” James Milne, president of ACS Publications, states in a recent Chemical & Engineering News article. “As such, we are evaluating the details of the guidance and accompanying economic analysis to determine the potential impact on both our publishing activities and on US researchers directly.”

Register for Today’s Webinar, “The OSTP Memo and its Impact on Chemistry” 

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM EDT / 16:00 PM – 17:00 PM BST 
Co-Sponsored by the ACS Division of Chemical Information 

This session brings together diverse viewpoints to discuss how the OSTP memo, the ensuing funder mandates, and publishers’ responses will shape the future of chemistry publishing. If you haven’t done so already, register below to attend or receive a free recording of the webinar. 

To keep you up to date on the latest Open Science news and policies, we will be updating information regularly on the ACS Open Science Resource Center as and when additional funder mandates are announced.  

Register Now

OPEN ACCESS WEEK 2022 BLOG SERIES
Celebrate Open Access Week 2022 with ACS Publications
Fostering a Climate of Open Science
Open Access Copyright and Licensing: A Guide for Authors
The Journey to Open Access: Past and Present
Looking Ahead: The Future of Open Access

Library Life: Interview with Northwestern University Librarian Elsa Alvaro

Elsa Alvaro

Elsa Alvaro is Head of Academic Engagement and the Librarian for Chemistry and Chemical and Biological Engineering at the Northwestern University Libraries.

Tell me about your current role:

My job as Head of Academic Engagement involves connecting the Northwestern community with the library’s collections, services, and expertise; overseeing two of Northwestern’s most notable libraries, the Transportation Library and the Herskovits Library of African Studies; and supporting student success connected to the library in a variety of ways, from directing orientation programs for undergraduate and graduate students to managing technology-rich spaces in which students can collaborate, learn and create. I am also the Librarian for Chemistry and Chemical and Biological Engineering.

What is your background?

I am originally from Spain and have a PhD in Chemistry. After obtaining my postdoc at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, I decided to pursue a degree in Library Science. It was at that time that I was awarded the ACS Division of Chemical Information Lucille Wert award, which started my involvement with CINF. I joined Northwestern as a chemistry librarian in 2013 and in 2019, I advanced to a leadership position in the library, becoming Head of Academic Engagement.

How do you help to address challenges faced by your institution’s students and faculty?

By putting librarians at the heart of academic life! We are an indispensable thread in the academic fabric.

For students, we do that by acknowledging the many different facets that define their experience at Northwestern University; those facets are opportunities to help students succeed. For example, if you are a chemistry major, we have a subject librarian specializing in your field who can help you discover the resources you need for rigorous research. If you are conducting undergraduate research, we have you covered there, too; we offer a summer grant for undergraduate students and a librarian works with the Office of Undergraduate Research to make sure we are addressing your unique concerns. For those who are studying abroad or interested in entrepreneurship, we have partnerships, tools, and resources to support those needs. Our engagement efforts extend to other aspects of the student experience, including new student programs and orientations, and end of term programming to support student well-being.

What are some trends that you are observing in the library world right now?

Academic libraries preserve, produce and provide access to knowledge. But we do not live in a bubble – our mission is connected to advancing research, teaching and learning at our institutions. That means that trends and challenges that impact universities, researchers, and society in general, are going to influence and shape our work. In the past years we have seen an increase in openness in the communication of research; and we are also observing that more fields are embracing AI and machine learning. Those trends have implications for us, including making available the work of our institutions (though licensing agreements, but also by being publishers), and the need to have a robust digital strategy and infrastructure.

As a result of the pandemic and understanding that the library is a workplace, one important current issue is how to be an equitable and inclusive community in which all library workers have the support to succeed in their roles.

What areas of interest are you focused on right now? 

My background as a chemist and a researcher strongly influences my approach to my job as librarian. I’m always looking forward to challenges, and I love to develop new programs to address gaps or unmet needs. For example, we are launching a new service to support systematic reviews and other types of evidence syntheses; this type of reviews is common in fields such as medical research but not so much in other disciplines. I am interested in bridging that gap, for instance by providing workshops and consultations in different aspects of the review process, and collaborating with researchers in projects.

You were also the chair of ACS’s Chemical Information (CINF) division in 2019. What was that like?

It was truly terrific. The experiences, opportunities and connections that I got through CINF have been key in my professional career, so I was honored and delighted to serve as chair. CINF is unique in the way it brings together informatics, librarianship, and data expertise in one community. Also, CINF officers and volunteers are a welcoming, talented, and supportive group of people, and a joy to work with. I was pleased that we engaged in strategic planning during my tenure.

A very important question: Who is your favorite scientist?

My spouse. Hands down. He is a theoretical physicist who works in neuromorphic computing and materials growth. Neuromorphic computing is a computer engineering approach that models and develops computing devices inspired by the human brain.

What is a fun fact about Northwestern University?

In 1921, Nobel Prize-winning chemist Marie Curie visited Northwestern University with her daughter to receive an honorary degree. During her visit, 100 area women coordinated a fundraising campaign and raised $100,000 (this would be over $1.4 million today!) to allow Madame Curie to purchase one gram of radium to continue her studies.

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Read More Library Life Interviews

The Journey to Open Access: Past and Present

This post is part of a five-part series published in celebration of International Open Access Week 2022. We encourage you to explore the entire series below, which offers valuable insights and resources in support of advancing transparency and inclusion in the scientific community through open access.

OPEN ACCESS WEEK 2022 BLOG SERIES
Celebrate Open Access Week 2022 with ACS Publications
Fostering a Climate of Open Science
Open Access Copyright and Licensing: A Guide for Authors
The Journey to Open Access: Past and Present
Looking Ahead: The Future of Open Access

Defining Open Access: The Early Years 

The term “open access” (OA) has been around for more than two decades, but the movement to make scientific research more openly and publicly available began well before it even had a name. 

With the rise of the internet in the 1990s, communicating and sharing knowledge with others around the world became easier than ever. Early repositories such as arXiv.org enabled researchers to post and archive their own research prior to official publication, setting the groundwork for modern-day preprint servers.  

It wasn’t until the early 2000s, with the release of the Budapest Open Access Initiative (BOAI) in 2002, that “open access” emerged as the defining term for scholarly research that is openly available online, accessible to everyone, and unrestricted by paywalls or financial barriers. 

OA—both the term and the movement—quickly began gaining traction internationally, and it was further expanded upon in 2003 with the publication of both the Bethesda Statement on Open Access Publishing and the Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities. These two statements, along with the BOAI, helped form what philosopher and OA pioneer Peter Suber first referred to as the “BBB Definition” of open access. 

A Growing Movement 

ACS Central Science - Inaugural Cover

The OA movement continued to develop throughout the 2010s, with the launch of many policies, campaigns, initiatives, and journals in support of making scholarly research freely and publicly available online. In 2015, ACS launched its first fully OA journal—ACS Central Science—with an infinity symbol on its inaugural cover to represent “no limits to the reach of chemistry and no barriers to access for interested readers and authors.”  

Then, in 2018, a group of funders across Europe (known as cOAlition S) caused a tremendous stir in the scientific publishing world by launching Plan S—an initiative stating that by 2021, all researchers funded by these agencies will be required to publish in fully OA journals, making their research openly available with a broad CC BY license immediately upon publication. To better align with Plan S requirements, ACS Publications worked with cOAlition S to award its full portfolio of subscription journals with Transformative Journal status. This now allows researchers funded by Plan S participants to have more flexibility in choosing where to publish within the ACS journal portfolio.  

Today’s Global Open Access Landscape 

Although the OA movement is widely regarded on a global scale, its implementation has varied quite a bit around the world.  

Since the launch of Plan S, Europe has remained a leader in its mandate-driven support for OA. With the implementation of Horizon Europealongside an approved research and innovation budget of almost €100 billion for 2021-2027—the European Union has now become one of the biggest OA funders in the world.  

North America is less driven by widespread, regional mandates, but rather by various discipline-specific funder mandates such as those established by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.  These approaches are likely to evolve in the near future with the issuance of the recent OSTP “Nelson Memo,” Ensuring Free, Immediate, and Equitable Access to Federally Funded Research; this sets out recommendations around public access to research outputs and scientific data that are applicable to all federal research funders’ own public access policies. 

The primary drivers for OA in Latin America have been academic institutions and government organizations rather than commercial publishers. Currently, there is a priority for Green OA, in which the author publishes in a subscription-based journal and places a copy of their work in an institutional or discipline-based repository (known as “self-archiving”). 

China and India currently lead the way in OA publishing for Asian countries, but the movement in Asia overall has been slower than that of Europe or the United States. OA mandates are not as common, and many researchers are still uninformed of the various OA policies and licensing options—more widespread OA resources, as well as additional government funding, may be required to move the needle forward.  

How ACS Supports Open Access Publishing for All 

As more and more authors are being required by their countries or institutions to publish in OA journals, one of the biggest challenges is the rising cost of Article Processing Charges (APCs). Many researchers, particularly those in developing countries and low-income settings, cannot afford the APCs required to publish in an OA journal.  

ACS Publications is fully committed to making OA publishing an opportunity available to everyone, regardless of institution, country, or policy. Read below to learn more about the ways in which we help authors navigate OA requirements and ensure they have the means to publish OA in any of our journals: 

Read + Publish Agreements
Also known as “transformative agreements,” these are agreements in which an institution pays to receive full access to all articles in ACS journals as well as APC credits that allow researchers to publish OA across the entire ACS journal portfolio. Read + Publish Agreements eliminate the burden of cost for the author while satisfying funder requirements and making the research globally available. 

ACS Transformative Journals
All of ACS Publications’ hybrid journals now qualify as Plan S-compliant transformative journals, and many funders will fully cover the publication costs associated with publishing OA in these journals. This support will be offered until 31 December 2024.   

Country Discount & Waiver Policy
ACS provides discounts and full waivers to corresponding authors from qualifying low- and lower-middle-income countries.  

Interested in learning more about how ACS Publications can help you navigate the open access landscape and easily get your work published in our journals? Visit our all-new Open Science Resource Center to get started on your OA journey. 

Visit the New Open Science Resource Center

Take Your Next Steps Towards Open Science

Take the Open Access Survey

Open Access Copyright and Licensing: A Guide for Authors

This post is part of a five-part series published in celebration of International Open Access Week 2022. We encourage you to explore the entire series below, which offers valuable insights and resources in support of advancing transparency and inclusion in the scientific community through open access.

OPEN ACCESS WEEK 2022 BLOG SERIES
Celebrate Open Access Week 2022 with ACS Publications
Fostering a Climate of Open Science
Open Access Copyright and Licensing: A Guide for Authors
The Journey to Open Access: Past and Present
Looking Ahead: The Future of Open Access

Which Licensing Option is Right for You? 

As global support for open access publishing continues to grow, it is more important than ever as an author to understand the options for protecting your published work and determining the extent to which others may use, share, or build upon your research.  

When publishing open access in an ACS journal, you will sign a Journal Publishing Agreement upon acceptance of your manuscript. As part of this process you’ll have the choice of two Creative Commons (CC) licenses—CC-BY or CC-BY-NC-ND—which will allow you to share your work publicly while still maintaining copyright. Below is an overview of each licensing option to help determine which is best for you. 

CC BY: Attribution 

CC BY Licensing Option

CC BY is the less restrictive of the two licensing options offered by ACS Publications. Under a CC BY license, others can share, modify, and expand upon your work, both for commercial and non-commercial purposes. Even so—and this is where the “BY” comes into play—others must attribute you as the original author and creator of the published work. 
 

CC BY-NC-ND: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 

CC BY-NC-ND Licensing Option

The CC BY-NC-ND licensing option contains more limitations: others are permitted to share your work, but they can only do so for non-commercial use (NC) and they cannot modify or expand upon the work in any way (ND). As with CC BY, others are required to credit you as the original author.  

If you are unsure which licensing option to choose, it is best to start by confirming any licensing requirements already established by your research funder. You can also easily check this on the ACS Journal Finder by indicating your funder and/or institution in the search tool.  

To learn more about licensing options, visit the Creative Commons website.   

Additional Resources 

How to Publish Open Access with ACS

ACS Read + Publish Agreements

Open Access Pricing

Fostering a Climate of Open Science

This post is part of a five-part series published in celebration of International Open Access Week 2022. We encourage you to explore the entire series below, which offers valuable insights and resources in support of advancing transparency and inclusion in the scientific community through open access.

OPEN ACCESS WEEK 2022 BLOG SERIES
Celebrate Open Access Week 2022 with ACS Publications
Fostering a Climate of Open Science
Open Access Copyright and Licensing: A Guide for Authors
The Journey to Open Access: Past and Present
Looking Ahead: The Future of Open Access

Open Access vs. Open Science—What’s the Difference?

“Open access” and “Open Science” are terms frequently used in the scientific and scholarly publishing communities, but they are not the same. Open access refers to the process of making research articles openly and freely available for anyone who wants to access them. However, it is just one piece of the Open Science puzzle.

Open Science describes a broad, collective movement with a goal of increasing transparency and access across all components of the research process beyond the traditional article—including open peer review, data repositories, scholarly communication, and much more. Open Science champions a globally inclusive landscape built on collaboration across academic fields and among researchers around the world.

ACS Publications is at the forefront of initiatives, products, and services supporting open access and the broader, ever-evolving Open Science landscape. Read below to learn more about our commitment to Open Science and the various resources available for our community.

ChemRxiv: Celebrating Five Years of Preprints

ChemRxiv: Celebrating Five Years of Preprints

Launched in 2017, ChemRxiv serves as the primary preprint server for the global chemistry community. By allowing authors to share initial versions of their manuscripts online prior to formal peer review, ChemRxiv supports the Open Science goals of global collaboration and advancing scientific progress through the timely sharing of research.

Now in its fifth year, ChemRxiv is home to more than 14,000 unique preprints across all fields of chemistry, which have generated nearly 38 million views and downloads.

SciMeetings: Global Visibility Beyond the Conference

SciMeetings: Global Visibility Beyond the Conference

SciMeetings is an ACS platform that helps researchers easily and openly share their work presented at conferences and events. SciMeetings is an invaluable tool that offers worldwide visibility for conference posters and presentations, extending reach and impact beyond that of a typical week-long scientific meeting. All published items receive a DOI, enabling them to be easily cited by others. 

More than 273,000 research items have been uploaded to SciMeetings since its launch in 2020, and the platform continues to grow and support researchers in alignment with Open Science goals.

Toward Greater Transparency in Peer Review

Toward Greater Transparency in Peer Review

Peer review is an essential step in the publishing process, but it has traditionally existed as a confidential exchange between authors and reviewers. To support our commitment to Open Science objectives, ACS Publications launched a transparent peer review pilot in ACS Central Science and The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters in 2021, providing authors with the option to make their peer review correspondence publicly available (while still maintaining reviewer anonymity).

Transparent peer review allows readers and emerging researchers to gain a better understanding of an article’s journey through the peer review process, and it also upholds research integrity by instilling a higher level of accountability for authors, reviewers, and editors. To date, the transparent peer review pilot has resulted in more than 250 published papers with publicly available peer review correspondence.  

Taking Data Sharing to a New Level

Taking Data Sharing to a New Level

Around the same time as the 2021 transparent peer review pilot launch, ACS Publications also announced a new Research Data Policy aimed at establishing open data sharing as the eventual norm across all journals. At the initial Level 1 of this four-level policy, authors are strongly encouraged to make the data associated with their research openly available for ease of analysis, comparison, and even reproducibility by others in the field.

One year later, three journals decided it was time to level up. in September 2022, ACS Publications launched a new Data Availability Statement pilot for The Journal of Organic ChemistryOrganic Letters, and ACS Organic & Inorganic Au. These journals now fall under Level 2 of the Research Data Policy, which requires authors to submit a statement describing the availability status of all supporting data associated with the article’s results. Although still in its early days, this new pilot has great potential to lead more journals into further supporting Open Science through the public visibility and sharing of research data.    

Our commitment to Open Science is ever-growing. If you are interested in learning more about how ACS Publications supports the Open Science movement, visit our all-new Open Science Resource Center to find out how you can take the next step toward making science more accessible for all.

Visit the New Open Science Resource Center

Take Your Next Steps Towards Open Science

Take the Open Access Survey

Celebrate Open Access Week 2022 with ACS Publications

This post is part of a five-part series published in celebration of International Open Access Week 2022. We encourage you to explore the entire series below, which offers valuable insights and resources in support of advancing transparency and inclusion in the scientific community through open access.

OPEN ACCESS WEEK 2022 BLOG SERIES
Celebrate Open Access Week 2022 with ACS Publications
Fostering a Climate of Open Science
Open Access Copyright and Licensing: A Guide for Authors
The Journey to Open Access: Past and Present
Looking Ahead: The Future of Open Access

Visit the All-New ACS Publications Open Science Resource Center

ACS Publications is a long-time supporter of, and leader in, open access. Our commitment to the open science movement is reflected across our author-focused open access programs, ACS Read + Publish Agreements, and a wealth of resources available for authors and administrators to understand and navigate the ever-evolving open access landscape.

Visit our Open Science Resource Center (now with a new look!) to learn more about our dedication to open access and explore resources including:

ACS Transformative Journals
Read + Publish Agreements
ACS Open Science Programs
Open Science Policies

Visit the New Open Science Resource Center

Take Your Next Steps Towards Open Science

Take the Open Access Survey

Open Access Week 2022 Webinar Series

This week-long webinar series brings together researchers, funders, institutions, librarians, publishers, and open access advocates. Participants will learn about the latest developments in open access publishing from speakers at every stage in the academic publishing community.

It’s not too late to sign up! Registrants will be able to access all webinar recordings. An overview of the agenda is provided below.

Register Now

MONDAY, OCTOBER 24
Mythbusting Open Access in the Chemical Sciences
10:00 AM – 11:00 AM EDT / 15:00 PM – 16:00 PM BST

The Role of Institutions in Fostering a Climate of Open Science
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM EDT / 16:00 PM – 17:00 PM BST 

TUESDAY, OCTOBER 25
Copyright for Researchers
12:00 PM – 13:00 PM EDT / 17:00 PM – 18:00 PM BST

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 27
Open Access for Early Career Researchers
7:00 AM – 8:00 AM EDT / 12:00 PM – 13:00 PM BST

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 28
Preprints in Chemistry – Now and Next
10:00 AM – 11:00 AM EDT / 15:00 PM – 16:00 PM BST

The OSTP ‘Nelson’ Memo and its Impact on Chemistry
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM EDT / 16:00 PM – 17:00 PM BST

Safety Information in Journal Articles Part 3: FAQs and Additional Resources

Safety is a core value of the American Chemical Society and an integral part of the overall research process. In the final part of this three-part series, we cover frequently asked questions and highlight additional chemical safety resources from ACS. If you haven’t caught up, be sure to read the full series below.

Part 1 |  Part 2 | Part 3

Frequently Asked Questions

Quote: Authors must emphasize any unexpected, new, and/or significant hazards or risks associated with the reported work.

There will undoubtedly be many questions that will arise when considering how to best structure your safety statement within the context of your manuscript.

Here, we’ve provided additional clarification for commonly asked questions when authors seek to meet the ACS requirement to “emphasize any unexpected, new, and/or significant hazards or risks associated with the reported work.”

How do I determine what classifies as a “significant” hazard or risk?

A “significant or unusual” hazard is anything that presents a major risk or requires preventative measures beyond those commonly expected to be present in a laboratory setting. Any hazards that fall within the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) Category 1 classification should always be noted. Even with novel or less hazardous materials, it is always best to use discretion, perform a comprehensive risk assessment, and note any potential risks associated with your processes. It will never hurt to be as thorough as possible during this reporting step!

Which section of my manuscript should include the safety statement?

To maximize visibility and utility, it is recommended to insert your safety statement in the Experimental Materials or Methods section of your manuscript. It is also a good idea to reiterate or expand upon your safety statement in the Supporting Information section, especially if it includes any details and context related to the author’s specific experience with the hazardous materials or procedures used.

At what point in the research process should I perform a risk assessment?

The risk assessment is the second step of RAMP, and it should be conducted after you’ve identified any hazards and before you begin your experimental methods. As mentioned in Part 2 of this series, your risk assessment will be the most complex step of RAMP, but it will help inform the necessary components of your safety statement as you begin writing.

RAMP Methodology

Does my safety statement count towards my overall word limit? 

If your statement is 100 words or fewer, it will not contribute towards your final word count. Longer summaries will be handled differently by each individual journal—you can learn more about length requirements by either consulting the journal’s Author Guidelines or contacting the Editor-in-Chief’s office.

Additional Safety Resources

ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety

ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety

The ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety is a technical division of ACS and a premier source for advancing best chemical and health safety practices through authoritative technical resources and mentorship. With nearly 2,000 members, the Division provides educational tools, training, and support for chemists, educators, safety professionals, and the public.

For more information or to become a member of the Division, contact membership@dchas.org.

ACS Committee on Chemical Safety

ACS Committee on Chemical Safety

The ACS Committee on Chemical Safety (CCS) was established in 1963 with the vision of fostering “a scientific community that embraces safety in all activities of the chemistry enterprise.” Through collaborative partnerships, peer-reviewed publications, tools for professional and educational use, and advisory support for other ACS committees and members, CCS is leading resource for promoting chemical and laboratory safety throughout the Society.

Visit the CCS website to learn more about the Committee and its members, explore resources, and browse upcoming events.

ACS Chemical Health & Safety

ACS Chemical Health & Safety

The journal ACS Chemical Health & Safety is a global platform for ensuring that all members of the chemical enterprise receive access to new research, safety information, regulatory updates, effective chemical hygiene practices, and hazard assessment tools. The Journal publishes high-quality articles and research appropriate for scientists, EH&S industry professionals, educators, and others who work in settings that contain chemicals or hazardous materials.

If you would like to learn more or are interested in publishing in ACS Chemical Health & Safety, visit the Journal’s website to browse the latest issue or view manuscript criteria.

ACS Center for Lab Safety

Part of the ACS Institute, the ACS Center for Lab Safety is a one-stop shop for educational resources supporting safe, ethical, and sustainable chemistry practices. From grade school classrooms to industrial laboratories, you will find training tools and learning opportunities—both in person and online— that aim to strengthen ACS’s Core Value of Safety through education.

Further Reading

SAFETY INFORMATION IN JOURNAL ARTICLES: THE COMPLETE SERIES
Part 1: The Necessity of Communication
Part 2: Tips for a Well-Written Safety Statement
Part 3: FAQs and Additional Resources


ARTICLES FROM ACS CHEMICAL HEALTH & SAFETY

Approaches to Understanding Human Behavior When Investigating Incidents in Academic Chemical Laboratories

Ronald W. McLeod
ACS Chem. Health Saf.
 2022, 29, 3, 263–279

Safety Data Sheets: Challenges for Authors, Expectations for End-Users
Anne DeMasi, Harry Elston, and Neal Langerman
ACS Chem. Health Saf. 2022, 29, 4, 369–377

The Ten Most Common Laboratory Safety Issues
Richard Palluzi
ACS Chem. Health Saf. 2022, 29, 1, 19–26

Peer Reviewed Methods/Protocols
Mary Beth Mulcahy
ACS Chem. Health Saf. 2022, 29, 1, 1–2


ADDITIONAL SAFETY RESOURCES
Periodic Table of Safety Elements
ACS Essentials of Lab Safety for General Chemistry: A Course
CHAS Workshops 2022-2023
CCS Publications and Resources
ACS Guide to Scholarly Communication: Communicating Safety Information

Safety Information in Journal Articles Part 2: Tips for a Well-Written Safety Statement

Safety is a core value of the American Chemical Society and an integral part of the overall research process. In Part 2 of this three-part series, provide tips and best practices for authors to formulate a well-written safety summary statement. If you haven’t caught up, be sure to read the full series below.

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

How to RAMP Up Your Safety Statement

Including a clear, articulate safety summary statement in your research is vital to ensuring that others who reproduce or expand upon your work can prepare for significant hazards and conduct their own methods as safely as possible. Therefore, crafting your statement should go beyond simply writing a few lines of text—there are many important things to consider before and during the safety reporting process in your manuscript.

In Part 1 of this series, we provide an overview of RAMP, a system that guarantees laboratory safety measures are at the top of every scientist’s mind before and during experimental processes. After Recognizing significant hazards and Assessing associated risks, you can apply this information to your safety statement to help both yourself and others Minimize these risks and Prepare thoroughly for possible emergencies.1

Safety Hazard Pictograms

Credit: GHS Hazard Communication Pictograms/ACS Guide to Scholarly Communication. Click image to view full size.

This figure contains the nine pictograms established by the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS).2 These symbols are located on chemical containers and labels, allowing you to quickly recognize the nature and possible hazards of a chemical. Certain chemical classes are noted as being of particular concern and should always be included in your safety statement.3

It is crucial to document any reaction or process hazards as well. Some examples include elevated temperature or pressure, highly exothermic processes, oxygen/fuel mixtures that are ignitable, or any factors that could make your process more complex such as radiation or biological pathogens.3

After identifying all hazards involved in your experimental process, you must then assess any risks from these hazards. Risk assessment involves consulting authoritative resources and analyzing the available data throughout all stages of your experiment to inform the best strategies for minimizing risk. There is no denying that risk assessment is often the most lengthy and complex component of RAMP, but there is a wealth of information and resources available for you to reference along the way.

Essential safety information should outline the approaches and strategies used to minimize risks and prepare for unforeseen emergencies. Examples may include using special equipment, substituting with a less hazardous method, or, in extremely high-risk scenarios, eliminating the use of certain hazards.3

What to Include in a Safety Summary Statement: A Checklist

The checklist below contains important items to include in your safety statement as they apply to the journal, procedures, and audience.3 Other things to consider:

  • Using numbers and bullets helps compartmentalize your risks and mitigations, making your statement easier to read.
  • Know your audience—with a research audience, certain standard safety procedures are widely known, but a teaching audience might benefit from a bit more detail.
  • Be sure to cite all sources used during the risk assessment portion of your statement.
Information to Include in a Safety Summary Statement: A Checklist

Credit: ACS Guide to Scholarly Communication. Click image to view full size.

Join us on Monday, October 24 for the third and final part of our series, in which we address common questions and provide additional tools and resources for communicating safety information. In the meantime, catch up on Part 1 and explore the resources below to learn more about evaluating hazards, writing your safety statement, and the importance of chemical health and safety.

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Further Reading

ACS SAFETY RESOURCES
ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety (CHAS)
Identifying and Evaluating Hazards in Research Laboratories
ACS Chemical Health & Safety
ACS Style Sheet for Writing Safety Statements

FROM THE AXIAL ARCHIVE
Safety Information in Journal Articles Part 1: The Necessity of Communication
Sharps in the Lab: Safety Procedures
How to Make Safety a Priority Before Students Enter the Lab
The Missing Piece of the Lab Safety Puzzle
RAMP Up Your Safety Education and Practice

References

  1. What is RAMP? The ACS Center for Lab Safety.
  2. About the GHS. United Nations Economic Commission for Europe.
  3. McEwen, L. and Sigmann, S. Communicating Safety Information. ACS Guide to Scholarly Communication 2020:1.3.1–1.3.7.

Celebrate National Chemistry Week 2022 with Resources on the Chemistry of Fabrics from the Journal of Chemical Education

National Chemistry Week, a community-based annual event uniting ACS local sections, businesses, schools, and individuals in communicating and promoting the value of chemistry in our everyday life, is celebrated this year from October 16–22, 2022 with the theme “Fabulous Fibers: The Chemistry of Fabrics.”

The Journal of Chemical Education has a wide range of articles for exploring and experimenting with fabrics through topics such as textile fibers, fabric dyes, treating and cleaning fabrics, and the future of fabrics. These materials can be used to motivate students, illustrate important chemical concepts, and communicate the value of chemistry. Chemistry involving fabrics can be linked to advanced topics in organic, inorganic, analytical, physical, and polymer chemistry. Make the most of this annual celebration by connecting chemistry to students’ everyday lives through resources from the Journal of Chemical Education.

Textile Fibers

From Textiles to Molecules—Teaching about Fibers To Integrate Students’ Macro- and Microscale Knowledge of Materials
Hannah Margel, Bat-Sheva Eylon, and Zahava Scherz
Journal of Chemical Education 2006, 83 (10), 1552
DOI: 10.1021/ed083p1552

A Closer Look at Cotton, Rayon, and Polyester Fibers
Trevor M. Letcher and Nothando S. Lutseke
Journal of Chemical Education 1990, 67 (5), 361
DOI: 10.1021/ed067p36

Textile Chemistry for the Artist
Sara Butler and Sally Malott
Journal of Chemical Education 1981, 58 (4), 295
DOI: 10.1021/ed058p295

Fiber Identification: A Colorful Experiment for All Ages
Jean Allan
Journal of Chemical Education 1990, 67 (3), 256
DOI: 10.1021/ed067p256

Textile Fiber Identification: An Organic-Polymer Laboratory
Robert L. Flachskam and Nancy W. Flachskam
Journal of Chemical Education 1991, 68 (12), 1044
DOI: 10.1021/ed068p1044

Identification and Characterization of Textile Fibers by Thermal Analysis
Fiona M. Gray, Michael J. Smith, and Magda B. Silva
Journal of Chemical Education 2011, 88 (4), 476-479
DOI: 10.1021/ed1004068

Fabric Dyes

Tie-Dyeing with Foraged Acorns and Rust: A Workshop Connecting Green Chemistry and Environmental Science
Christian Machado, Anton O. Oliynyk, and Julian R. Silverman
Journal of Chemical Education 2022, 99 (6), 2431-2437
DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.2c00086

A Green Nucleophilic Aromatic Substitution Reaction
Liza Abraham
Journal of Chemical Education 2020, 97 (10), 3810-3815
DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.0c00181

Tie-Dye! An Engaging Activity To Introduce Polymers and Polymerization to Beginning Chemistry Students
A. M. R. P. Bopegedera
Journal of Chemical Education 2017, 94 (11), 1725-1732
DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.6b00796

Introducing Students to Fundamental Chemistry Concepts and Basic Research through a Chemistry of Fashion Course for Nonscience Majors
Karen A. Tallman
Journal of Chemical Education 2019, 96 (9), 1906-1913
DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.8b00826

Colors to Dye for: Preparation of Natural Dyes
Journal of Chemical Education Staff
Journal of Chemical Education 1999, 76 (12), 1688A-1688B
DOI: 10.1021/ed076p1688A

Cooking Up Colors from Plants, Fabric, and Metal
Jennifer E. Mihalick and Kathleen M. Donnelly
Journal of Chemical Education 2007, 84 (1), 96A
DOI: 10.1021/ed084p96A

Using Metals To Change the Colors of Natural Dyes
Jennifer E. Mihalick and Kathleen M. Donnelly
Journal of Chemical Education 2006, 83 (10), 1550
DOI: 10.1021/ed083p1550

The Chemistry of Fabric Reactive Dyes
Marcia C. Bonneau
Journal of Chemical Education 1995, 72 (8), 724
DOI: 10.1021/ed072p724

The Chemistry of Plant and Animal Dyes
Margareta Sequin-Frey
Journal of Chemical Education 1981, 58 (4), 301
DOI: 10.1021/ed058p301

Colors for Textiles—Ancient and Modern
Max Bender
Journal of Chemical Education 1947, 24 (1), 2
DOI: 10.1021/ed024p2

Growth of the Dyestuffs Industry: The Application of Science to Art
R. E. Rose
Journal of Chemical Education 1926, 3 (9), 973
DOI: 10.1021/ed003p973

Treating and Cleaning Fabrics

CO2 Dry Cleaning: A Benign Solvent Demonstration Accessible to K–8 Audiences
Reuben Hudson, Henry M. Ackerman, Lindsay K. Gallo, Addison S. Gwinner, Anna Krauss, John D. Sears, Alexandra Bishop, Kristin N. Esdale, and Jeffrey L. Katz
Journal of Chemical Education 2017, 94 (4), 480-482
DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.6b00412

Experimenting with Synthesis and Analysis of Cationic Gemini Surfactants in a Second-Semester General Chemistry Laboratory
Mary E. Anzovino, Andrew E. Greenberg, and John W. Moore
Journal of Chemical Education 2015, 92 (3), 524-528
DOI: 10.1021/ed500395u

Using a Flatbed Scanner To Measure Detergency: A Cost-Effective Undergraduate Laboratory
J. A. Poce-Fatou, M. Bethencourt, F. J. Moreno-Dorado, and J. M. Palacios-Santander
Journal of Chemical Education 2011, 88 (9), 1314-1317
DOI: 10.1021/ed100635z

Future of Fabrics

Transforming a Classic Polymer Demonstration into a Flexible, Inquiry-Based Laboratory Experience for Lower and Upper Division Laboratories
Ani Nvehr Davis, Stephan Georgiev Michaelov, Clayton Joshua Rogers, Leighann Rose Weber, Brycelyn Marie Boardman, and Gretchen Marie Peters
Journal of Chemical Education Article ASAP
DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.2c00361

Detecting Microplastics in Soil and Sediment in an Undergraduate Environmental Chemistry Laboratory Experiment That Promotes Skill Building and Encourages Environmental Awareness
Laura Rowe, Maria Kubalewski, Robert Clark, Emily Statza, Thomas Goyne, Katie Leach, and Julie Peller
Journal of Chemical Education 2019, 96 (2), 323-328
DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.8b00392

Chemical Oxidative Polymerization of Polyaniline: A Practical Approach for Preparation of Smart Conductive Textiles
Nedal Y. Abu-Thabit
Journal of Chemical Education 2016, 93 (9), 1606-1611
DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.6b00060

Synthesis, Characterization, and Secondary Structure Determination of a Silk-Inspired, Self-Assembling Peptide: A Laboratory Exercise for Organic and Biochemistry Courses
Tyler J. Albin, Melany M. Fry, and Amanda R. Murphy
Journal of Chemical Education 2014, 91 (11), 1981-1984
DOI: 10.1021/ed5001203

Chemistry of Durable and Regenerable Biocidal Textiles
Gang Sun and S. Dave Worley
Journal of Chemical Education 2005, 82 (1), 60
DOI: 10.1021/ed082p60

Using Fabrics to Teach Chemical Concepts

The Hunt for Maya Purple: Revisiting Ancient Pigments Syntheses and Properties
Jean-Yves Winum, Laurent Bernaud, and Jean-Sébastien Filhol
Journal of Chemical Education 2021, 98 (4), 1389-1396
DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.0c01306

An Advanced Spectroscopy Lab That Integrates Art, Commerce, and Science as Students Determine the Electronic Structure of the Common Pigment Carminic Acid
Suqing Liu, Asami Odate, Isabella Buscarino, Jacqueline Chou, Kathleen Frommer, Margeaux Miller, Alison Scorese, Marisa C. Buzzeo, and Rachel Narehood Austin
Journal of Chemical Education 2017, 94 (2), 216-220
DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.6b00644

Adsorption of a Textile Dye on Commercial Activated Carbon: A Simple Experiment To Explore the Role of Surface Chemistry and Ionic Strength
Angela Martins and Nelson Nunes
Journal of Chemical Education 2015, 92 (1), 143-147
DOI: 10.1021/ed500055v

Analysis of a Natural Yellow Dye: An Experiment for Analytical Organic Chemistry
Alexandre Villela, Goverdina C. H. Derksen, and Teris A. van Beek
Journal of Chemical Education 2014, 91 (4), 566-569
DOI: 10.1021/ed400331f

Identification of Onion Dye Chromophores in the Dye Bath and Dyed Wool by HPLC-DAD: An Educational Approach
Cristina Barrocas Dias, Marco Miranda, Ana Manhita, António Candeias, Teresa Ferreira, and Dora Teixeira
Journal of Chemical Education 2013, 90 (11), 1498-1500
DOI: 10.1021/ed100668k

Accurate, Photoresistor-Based, Student-Built Photometer and Its Application to the Forensic Analysis of Dyes
Anna L. Adams-McNichol, Rayf C. Shiell, and David A. Ellis
Journal of Chemical Education 2019, 96 (6), 1143-1151
DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.8b00862

Adsorption Kinetics and Isotherms: A Safe, Simple, and Inexpensive Experiment for Three Levels of Students
Polly R. Piergiovanni
Journal of Chemical Education 2014, 91 (4), 560-565
DOI: 10.1021/ed400267j