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        Faculty, Supply Chain Management

        Auburn professors guide Journal of Business Logistics' rise in rankings

        August 7, 2023 By Michael Ares

        All News


        Journal of Business Logistics slide

        Harbert College of Business faculty members Beth Davis-Sramek and Glenn Richey, who have served as co-editors-in-chief of the Journal of Business Logistics, have helped raise the publication's ranking during their tenure.

        Academic journals typically exist in a relatively static universe when it comes to impact and reputation – the prominence of one journal or another rarely changes from year to year. Lead times for high-quality, peer-reviewed research suitable for publication are long and standards are high. In many cases, the pool of contributors is all-too-often a fixed set – submissions from faculty at top-tier institutions traditionally dominate what is accepted for publication by the journals’ editors.

        In the most recent journal rankings report from Clarivate, the Journal of Business Logistics moved up from #42 to #20 out of the 227 business journals included in the report. This significant jump in the rankings occurred under the leadership of two Harbert College of Business scholars in the Department of Supply Chain Management,  Beth Davis-Sramek and Glenn Richey. They have served as co-editors-in-chief since October of 2020. The bar for successful publication is high, with an acceptance rate of only 5 to 8 percent of the research papers submitted.

        In the early days of their tenure, Davis-Sramek and Richey set out to impact the supply chain management discipline by bringing a broader set of studies to the journal. To that end, Richey recently returned from an extended overseas trip where he visited vital ports of call and other installations in Europe and Africa to promote engagement from non-traditional research sources. 

        "This is the second journal I've supported," says Richey, "and I've been encouraging research submissions from authors in non-Western places like Africa and Latin America for years. Unfortunately, most have gotten their work rejected because it didn’t meet the high bar established for successful publication at JBL. That's not good for anyone involved.

        “My goal for this past trip was to promote the journal, put a face to the publication, and provide support and guidance for researchers who are interested in publishing their research in JBL. It's also nice to be able to tell good, positive stories. On the trip, I used an example of a recently published paper from researchers in Africa. So, we're moving in the right direction, but it takes time."

        According to Davis-Sramek, sustainable supply chain management continues to be an important area of research.

        “We would love to see more research from places where environmentally and socially sustainable practices can make the most impact,” she said. “There is great potential to study how supply chains are evolving in areas like Africa and the Gulf States. We hope that continued engagement will lead to more opportunities for researchers around the globe.”

        Congratulations to Glenn and Beth for their success in raising the visibility of the Journal of Business Logistics and Auburn's highly regarded Department of Supply Chain Management.