Ecological Research


    Vol. 31 (2016)
    Submitted: 469
    Accepted: 98


    Current issue (vol. 32, issue 2)
    Days for acceptance:
    144 (37–293)
    Days for online-first:
    158 (50–308)
    Days for publication:
    209 (90–375)


  • Online First

  • The 30th anniversary of Ecological Research: past, present, and future

  • Tomonori Tsunoda, Buntarou Kusumoto, Kei-ichi Okada, Yuko Aoshima, Atsushi Kume

    The 30th anniversary of Ecological Research: past, present, and future

    Keywords: Editorial system; International research; Editorial strategies; Journal; The Ecological Society of Japan

    Abstract In 2016, Ecological Research (ER) celebrated its 30th anniversary. ER's goal is to be the leading ecological, evolutionary, and biodiversity journal in Asia. This article introduces the development of ER, improvements to its editorial system and their outcomes, and the strategies designed to achieve this goal. ER has already become a leading comprehensive and international publication as shown by statistical evidence and its strong editorial foundation. However, some members of the Ecological Society of Japan (ESJ) retain impressions of an old stereotype about ER. The discrepancy between the current status of the journal and its stereotype may explain why submissions from Japan remain static. A new article category for ER, Biodiversity in Asia, was created to encourage Asian studies. In addition, the Forum category is dedicated to promoting a broad understanding of the ESJ's various activities. To promote open science, the proportion of open access articles in the journal is increasing. The publication of Data papers has been accelerated to improve the public availability of excellent open data sets. ER symposia and seminars provide good opportunities for members to participate. ER financially supports the invitation of scientists internationally to facilitate research exchanges with other countries and consequently promotes the internationalization of the ESJ. The ESJ is open to the world's ecologists, and your participation in developing ER is welcome.

  • Vol. 31 issue 1

  • Citizen science: a new approach to advance ecology, education, and conservation

  • Kobori H, Dickinson JL, Washitani I, Sakurai R, Amano T, Komatsu N, Kitamura W, Takagawa S, Koyama K, Ogawara T & Miller-Rushing AJ

    Citizen science: a new approach to advance ecology, education, and conservation

    Keywords: Citizen science; History; Human-natural system; Web-based approach; Worldwide case studies

    Abstract Citizen science has a long history in the ecological sciences and has made substantial contributions to science, education, and society. Developments in information technology during the last few decades have created new opportunities for citizen science to engage ever larger audiences of volunteers to help address some of ecology's most pressing issues, such as global environmental change. Using online tools, volunteers can find projects that match their interests and learn the skills and protocols required to develop questions, collect data, submit data, and help process and analyze data online. Citizen science has become increasingly important for its ability to engage large numbers of volunteers to generate observations at scales or resolutions unattainable by individual researchers. As a coupled natural and human approach, citizen science can also help researchers access local knowledge and implement conservation projects that might be impossible otherwise. In Japan, however, the value of citizen science to science and society is still underappreciated. Here we present case studies of citizen science in Japan, the United States, and the United Kingdom, and describe how citizen science is used to tackle key questions in ecology and conservation, including spatial and macro-ecology, management of threatened and invasive species, and monitoring of biodiversity. We also discuss the importance of data quality, volunteer recruitment, program evaluation, and the integration of science and human systems in citizen science projects. Finally, we outline some of the primary challenges facing citizen science and its future.