eLife Latest: Welcoming our newest editors in Latin America

eLife’s representation in Latin America more than triples as over 40 researchers based across the region join our editorial board.

Today we are pleased to welcome 43 scientists based in Latin America who have joined the eLife editorial board following our first open call for self-nominations for Reviewing Editors. Working in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico and Uruguay, our new editors bring expertise across 17 of the 18 major research areas within eLife’s scope.

As Reviewing Editors for eLife, the new editors will work with eLife Senior Editors to select which new submissions to review in-depth, oversee the peer review for those articles including inviting the peer reviewers, and draft an eLife assessment that captures the major conclusions of the review process, which will be posted publicly on the preprint.

Among the new editors, Marion Brunck is an early-career group leader at the Tecnológico de Monterrey. Her research focuses on neutrophil biology and breast milk immunity, and she comments, “As a female scientist working in Mexico, I want to leverage my position at eLife to advocate for positive changes, to showcase quality science, and to positively impact future generations of researchers.”

Pablo Hernán Strobl-Mazzulla researches developmental biology and epigenetic regulation of gene expression at the Instituto Tecnológico de Chascomús in Argentina. “I wanted to become an eLife Reviewing Editor because I think Latin American researchers are currently disadvantaged by the publishing landscape,” says Strobl-Mazzulla. “I want to help remind reviewers that important research questions can still be addressed without high-tech equipment but with simple, carefully designed experiments.”

Paula Casati leads a group at Centro de Estudios Fotosintéticos y Bioquímicos in Argentina that studies plant biochemistry and molecular biology. Casati says: “I am excited to join eLife’s Board of Reviewing Editors and look forward to now increasing the contribution of research done in Latin American countries to the journal.”

Daniel Takahashi is an assistant professor at the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte in Brazil interested in understanding the emergence of complex biological phenomena. “From the quality and diversity of publications to the transparent editorial policy and adoption of new publishing technologies, everything in eLife resonates with me,” says Takahashi. “I am delighted for the opportunity to be part of this revolution.”

The open call for self-nominations was designed in partnership with existing eLife editors and members of eLife’s Early-Career Advisor Group. As a pilot initiative, it was limited to researchers based in Latin America and the Caribbean because these regions have traditionally been underrepresented within our editorial board. Prior to the open call, researchers in Latin America represented less than 2% of our Board of Reviewing Editors; now 7% of our Reviewing Editors are based in Latin America.

The open call originally ran in March and April 2022, before the deadline was extended into May to allow for additional outreach to improve gender balance within the pool of applicants. Overall, 68 applications, across eight Latin American countries, met the eligibility criteria: 61% of applicants were men, 34% were women (up from 23% before the deadline extension) and 4% were non-binary.

Eligible applications were then anonymously reviewed by a committee of eLife editors and early-career advisors, with every applicant being reviewed by at least one local editor from Latin America. This assessment primarily focused on the candidate's interest in the role and eLife’s mission, their prior peer-review experience, and their ability to articulate feedback clearly and constructively.

María Mercedes Zambrano at CorpoGen Research Center in Colombia is an eLife Reviewing Editor who assessed applications. She shares, “As a scientist based in Latin America, I greatly appreciate eLife’s commitment to diversifying its editor base by actively recruiting from historically underrepresented regions. The quality and diverse scientific backgrounds of the applicants reflect a breadth of research and expertise that will help drive ongoing efforts to change the way science is considered and communicated.”

Also involved in this first review was Carolina Quezada, an eLife early-career advisor and academic researcher at the Universidad Católica de la Santísima Concepción in Chile. She says, “Diversification of the reviewer pool is a key step towards a fairer publication process. I was both proud and inspired to witness such a high level of scientific achievement and commitment to building a better research community among the applicants to eLife’s open call for new editors.”

Following this first round of review, 57 applicants (84%) were put forward to eLife's Senior and Deputy Editor to evaluate their scientific expertise and contributions to quality science. This process selected the final 43 new editors who have now joined eLife’s editorial board.

The overall success rate for eligible applicants was 63%, and there were no significant differences in the success of applicants based on gender, career stage or ethnicity. There are fewer women among the new editors compared to the rest of our Board of Reviewing Editors – 33% vs 44% respectively – but the gender balance of the new editors does reflect the number of women who applied to the open call. Early-career researchers, however, are much better represented: 24% of our new editors are early-career group leaders and 9% are research scientists who do not lead a research group, whereas around 10% of the rest of our board are early-career researchers. Finally, over a third of our new editors (38%) self-identify as a member of a minority or underrepresented group based on their race or ethnicity, compared to one in five (20%) for existing Reviewing Editors.

Demographic information for the new editors, all applicants to the open call and eLife’s Board of Reviewing Editors as of October 2022. For new editors and applicants, at least 90% answered these demographic questions. Figures for the Board of Reviewing Editors are based on 549 self-reported responses for gender; 496 for career stage (with the categories as reported here); and 520 for membership of a minority or underrepresented group based on race or ethnicity. Any individuals who did not answer or responded “Prefer not to say” have been excluded from this analysis.

Mone Zaidi is the eLife Deputy Editor who championed the working group that designed this pilot open call. He says: “It is gratifying to see so many talented researchers joining eLife and supporting our mission to improve the process of peer review. Following the success of our first call for self-nominations, we will be looking to continue to diversify our editorial board with further open calls in the future.”

Our new Reviewing Editors include:

  • Alan Talevi, National University of La Plata, CONICET, Argentina
  • Alejandro San Martín, Centro de Estudios Científicos, Chile
  • Ana Maria Faria, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Brazil
  • Daniel Takahashi, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil
  • Dario Zamboni, Universidade de Sao Paulo, School of Medicine Ribeirao Preto, Brazil
  • David Arturo Paz-García, Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas del Noroeste, Mexico
  • Emilio Kropff, Fundación Instituto Leloir, IIBBA/CONICET, Argentina
  • Esteban Beckwith, Instituto de Fisiología, Biología Molecular y Neurociencias, CONICET-UBA, Argentina
  • Ethel Bayer Santos, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil
  • Fernán Agüero, Universidad de San Martín, Argentina
  • Gustavo Henrique Goldman, Universidade de Sao Paulo, Brazil
  • Ignacio Enrique Sanchez, Universidad de Buenos Aires, CONICET, Argentina
  • Ivan Velasco, Instituto de Fisiología Celular, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico
  • Joao Marques, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Brazil
  • José Biurrun Manresa, National University of Entre Ríos, CONICET, Argentina
  • Juan Ernesto Ludert, Center for Research and Advanced Studies of the National Polytechnic Institute, Mexico
  • Karina Andrea Gomex, Instituto de Investigaciones en Ingeniería Genética y Biología Molecular (INGEBI-CONICET), Argentina
  • Laura Ruth Delgui, Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (CONICET), Argentina
  • Leonardo Elias, University of Campinas, Brazil
  • Luis Caetano Antunes, Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, Brazil
  • Marcelo Mori, University of Campinas, Brazil
  • Marcio Rodrigues, Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, Brazil
  • Marcos Nahmad, Center for Research and Advanced Studies of the National Polytechnic Institute, Mexico
  • Mariana Gómez-Schiavon, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico
  • Mariano Soiza-Reilly, Instituto de Fisiología, Biología Molecular y Neurociencias CONICET-UBA, Argentina
  • Marianoel Pereira-Gómez, Institut Pasteur de Montevideo, Uruguay
  • Mariela Monteoliva, INTECH, CONICET-UNSAM, Argentina
  • Marion Brunck, Tecnológico de Monterrey, Mexico
  • Marisa Nicolás, Laboratório Nacional de Computação Científica, Brazil
  • Martín Graña, Institut Pasteur Montevideo, Uruguay
  • Mauricio Comas-Garcia, Universidad Autónoma de San Luis Potosí, Mexico
  • Nara Muraro, Biomedicine Research Institute of Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • Natalia de Miguel, INTECH, CONICET-UNSAM, Argentina
  • Natalia Rubinstein, University of Buenos Aires, CONICET, Argentina
  • Nicolás Pírez, Institute for Physiology, Molecular Biology and Neurosciences (IFIBYNE CONICET-UBA), Argentina
  • Nicolas Unsain, INIMEC-CONICET, Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina
  • Pablo Wappner, Fundación Instituto Leloir, Argentina
  • Pablo Aguilar, IFIBYNE (CONICET-UBA), Argentina
  • Pablo Hernán Strobl-Mazzulla, INTECH, CONICET-UNSAM, Argentina
  • Paula Casati, Centro de Estudios Fotosinteticos y Bioquimicos, Argentina
  • Paula del Carmen Fernandez, Instituto Nacional de Tecnología Agropecuaria (INTA), Argentina
  • Renan Souza, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Brazil
  • Yaroslav Ispolatov, Universidad de Santiago, Chile

Other eLife Reviewing Editors in Latin America include:

  • David Donoso, Escuela Politécnica Nacional, Ecuador
  • Dirce Carraro, AC Camargo Cancer Center, Brazil
  • Hugo Merchant, Instituto de Neurobiología National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico
  • John Ewer, Universidad de Valparaiso, Chile
  • Juan Saez, Universidad de Valparaíso, Chile
  • Leon Islas, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico
  • Luis Larrondo, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Chile
  • Marcelo Ferreira, University of São Paulo, Brazil
  • María Zambrano, CorpoGen, Colombia
  • Mashaal Sohail, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico
  • Mauro Teixeira, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Brazil
  • Pablo González, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Chile
  • Pablo Manavella, Universidad Nacional del Litoral-CONICET, Argentina

Questions and comments are welcome. Please feel free to comment here or via email: edi@elifesciences.org. Anonymous feedback may also be shared via this form.

Project led by:

Maria Guerreiro, Head of Journal Development
Millicent McConnell, Editorial Manager
Stuart King, Research Culture Manager


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