Ron Hacker, Chair, Publications Committee.  Email:

New appointment to the Publications Committee

Council has appointed Dr Jen Silcock to fill one of the vacancies on the Publications Committee. In her own words: ‘Jen Silcock has lived and worked in the arid lands, mostly in western Queensland, for the past 12 years, on historical ecology, flora and fauna conservation, rare species, wetlands, grazing impacts and management, and vegetation dynamics. She looks forward to maintaining the high quality and expanding the reach of the Journal, and encouraging more articles focusing on rangeland conservation and natural and cultural history.’ Welcome Jen!

With this appointment there remains one vacancy on the Publications Committee and I would welcome contact from any member who would be interested in contributing to the Society in this way.

The Rangeland Journal

The Impact Factor (IF) for TRJ in 2016, released in June, increased from 1.19 to 1.21. Although only a small increase it is nevertheless an increase. The 2016 impact factor reflects the number of citations in 2016 of articles published in the journal in 2014 and 2015, divided by the total number of citable articles published in that two-year period.  Given that some of the papers published in 2016 (particularly in the Special Issues) have been cited frequently I am hopeful that the IF will increase further in 2017.

Following the tender process, Council has awarded the contract to publish the journal in the period 2018-2022 to our current publisher, CSIRO Publishing.  Under the new contract the cost to the Society of publishing the journal will be considerably reduced and a range of benefits will be available to members. However, the contract is still under negotiation. Further details will be provided in the next newsletter when I expect the contract will have been signed.

Range Management Newsletter

Thanks to the efforts of Newsletter Editor Noelene Duckett the complete archive of Range Management Newsletter is now available on the web site.  This includes the several issues of Range Assessment Newsletter, the precursor of RMN. Noelene is currently working on an index of articles which will make this archival content more readily searchable. Our thanks to Noelene for undertaking this important task.

Web site and social media

With the Port Augusta conference rapidly approaching the web site is functioning effectively as the conference portal, accepting registrations and payments in a user-friendly fashion. This is the first time the web site has been used in this way, as previous conference organising committee’s established separate conference web sites, and justifies Council’s decision to ensure that the design of the new web site incorporated this functionality.   The Society’s social media presence via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram continues to be highly effective in contacting people with an interest in rangelands well beyond the Society’s membership.