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In 2019, Dr Pedro T. Ramirez, Editor-in-Chief of IJGC, in partnership with the European Network of Young Gynecological Oncologists (ENYGO), European Society for Gynecological Oncology (ENYGO-ESGO) and the International Gynecologic Cancer Society (IGCS) launched a joint IJGC Editorial Fellowship. The aim of the three- to four-month fellowships was to provide opportunities for young trainees and faculty to gain experience in the peer review process, scientific communication and working as part of an editorial team.
The competitive selection process for this fellowship for 2019/2020 was based on assessment of previous academic experience, personal motivation, and online interviews. Local support of the candidates was mandatory, given the time demands by the Editorial Fellowship. Selected Fellows were mentored by the Editor-in-Chief and Social Media Editor Dr Ane Gerda Zahl Eriksson. Lindsey Struckmeyer is the Managing Editor who coordinated the different tasks and deadlines.
One of the main tasks of the fellowship was the development and promotion of the journal’s social media channels, supervised by Dr Ane Gerda Zahl Eriksson. Succeeding teams developed and nurtured social media engagement with both readers and authors. Over the past year, numerous Tweetorials, IJGC journal clubs and podcasts were organized in different languages. Journal metrics have shown tremendous growth; and the Twitter account @IJGCfellows, created just before the COVID-19 pandemic, has gained over 1000 followers. This focus on timely communication of contemporary research through different types of media offers extra value to both experienced readers and young practitioners.
Fellows also received paired mentoring sessions with Dr Pedro T. Ramirez to discuss and share reviews of selected manuscripts and were involved in the planning of content in subsequent issues. During the ESGO Congress in November 2019, Fellows recorded video interviews with leaders in our field for use on Twitter and the journal website. In turn, these activities led to new academic collaborations and expansion of personal networks. As in-person meetings were canceled during the COVID-19 pandemic, most activity was planned online. The social media activity sparked many discussions and allowed us to engage with renowned scholars, inspiring us to develop new ideas and collaborations for future research.
Learning about the editorial process at IJGC has not only helped us prepare our own manuscripts for submission but has also helped us expand our horizons.
The IJGC Fellowship has been an amazingly rewarding experience for each and every one of us. Engagement in editorial activities is academic advancement and reflects scientific productivity. Since the Fellowship, several of the Editorial Fellows have progressed to becoming members of the IJGC Editorial Board. This illustrates that the Editorial Fellowship may prove valuable in consideration of future academic promotions, and may help to develop greater gender and cultural diversity in gynecological oncology.
Tips for prospective fellows include the following:
Ensure local support from your head of department and immediate colleagues.
Familiarize yourself with different types of social media and video conferencing, start following updates from the main journals in your field.
Enjoy the diversity of scientific activities from medical writing, to publishing, mentoring, peer review and guideline committees: get involved.
Be prepared to offer novel and innovative ideas regarding strategies on how to further improve the quality of the journal.
Twitter @AngelesFite, @HsuMd, @drsadiejones, @drlouisewan, @GabrielleVanRam
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Patient consent for publication Not required.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.