With this first issue of 2005, the IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering ( TKDE) has completed its 16th year of publication. Thanks to the hard work and outstanding efforts of the four previous editors-in-chief, and their associate editors, reviewers, authors, and support staff from the IEEE Computer Society Publications Office, TKDE is now commonly recognized as the premier journal in the field of knowledge and data engineering, including database systems, data mining, and knowledge engineering. It will be a great challenge to maintain this "premier" status for the years to come, given that there are many similar journals published by sister societies and commercial publishers, each of which is seeking to become a premier journal in the field.
As the new Editor-in-Chief, I do not have any other choice, but to 1) learn the successful footsteps from the previous Editors-in-Chief and 2) keep enhancing the journal's value to its authors and readers. I will work hard to advocate the following activities:
a. Revise TKDE topic areas to cover new emerging areas and technological advancements, and organize special issues on promising topics when the need arises.
b. Invite well-recognized researchers in TKDE areas to serve on the Editorial Board.
c. Push for a target turnaround time of three months from submission, by i) keeping regular reminders to associate editors from the TKDE assistant in the IEEE Computer Society Publications Office on Manuscript Central and ii) adding monthly paper-status checking from the Editor-in-Chief. Inactive associate editors will be replaced after their first term of two years.
d. Minimize the delay in publication by reducing the backlog of accepted papers. The previous Editors-in-Chief managed to increase the page budgets several times in the past. We need to keep working along this line when the need arises again, to maintain the journal's attractiveness to our authors.
I plan to appoint one or two Associate Editors-in-Chief very soon, partly to help me with items a) and b) above, and partly to deal with papers that would require special attention, such as paper submissions from my (previous and current) graduate students and postdocs. As an established policy for all IEEE Computer Society transactions, an Editor-in-Chief is not allowed to submit any (new) papers to his/her own transactions during his/her tenure as editor-in-chief. I fully support this policy.
I will also start an annual Editorial Board meeting at one or two major IEEE conferences, so that the Associate Editors on the Editorial Board will be invited to come and discuss their experiences, concerns, and insights.
I am very familiar with TKDE. I have published in TKDE in the past, and was an associate editor for TKDE between January 2000 and December 2003 (two terms). I know many of the current associate editors as well as all of the four previous Editors-in-Chief. In terms of high-quality, peer-reviewed conferences, I am the founder and current Steering Committee Chair of the IEEE International Conference on Data Mining (ICDM), and was the Conference Chair for ICDM 2001, and a Program Chair for ICDM 2003. ICDM has now become a premiere international forum for the sharing of original research results and innovative, practical development experiences in data mining. I have also served on the program committees and advisory boards of more than 90 international conferences, including various IEEE and ACM conferences. I will encourage selected papers from first-rate conferences to be expanded and revised for possible inclusion in TKDE, after an expeditious reviewing process.
Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to invite all authors and readers to contact me at email@example.com to share their comments and advice on how to further enhance the journal's value to the wider research community in knowledge and data engineering, and how to move TKDE to the next level of excellence.
• X. Wu is with the Department of Computer Science, University of Vermont, 351 Votey Building, Burlington, VT 05405. E-mail: cs.uvm.edu.
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