The search for the first ACS Publications Ombudsperson is ongoing with the publication of a call for proposals for the role. This call follows on from a special joint editorial from June 2020 outlining five steps our organization would take to combat systemic racism in our publishing processes:

  • Collecting and publishing our basic diversity statistics in our journals, which include our editors, consultants, reviewers and authors; report annually on progress.
  • Training new and existing editors to identify and break bias in peer review
  • Inclusion of the diversity of magazine authors as an explicit measure of the editor-in-chief’s performance
  • Appoint an ombudsperson to act as a liaison between the editors and our community
  • Develop an actionable diversity plan for each ACS magazine

These steps are highly interdependent, and ACS Publications has made steady progress over the past year while working on these goals.

One of the most difficult steps was creating a new role as ombudsperson at ACS Publications, a position the organization never had. This role will act as the independent liaison between ACS Publications and the chemistry community to address concerns related to editors, members of the Editorial Advisory Board, or reviewers regarding editorial processes. The ombudsperson will assist ACS Publications in achieving our goal of providing the most comprehensive peer review services possible to the chemical community, regardless of gender, sexual orientation / identity, race / ethnicity, religion, employment status or status in this area .

The call for proposals was developed after intensive collaboration with the International Association of Ombudsmen to learn more about the role of an ombudsperson and how best to implement and support such a position. ACS Publications is currently accepting applications and hopes to have someone in this position this fall.

Applicants should have the following qualifications:

  • At least 3 years of experience as an organizational ombudsman or completed training in conflict resolution, law or a related area; and ombudsman training (degree from International Ombudsman Association Foundations or equivalent).
  • You must be familiar with the IOA Code of Ethics and standards of practice. Membership in the International Ombudsman Association is not mandatory, but is preferred.

A scientific background is desirable, but not essential.

Application process:

Applicants for this position should apply on or beforehand 5:00 p.m. EDT on August 13, 2021.

Proposals should include a résumé and 2 letters of recommendation from experienced organizational ombudsmen, and a review of ACS Publications’ policies and compensation expectations.

Applications should be sent to: Ombuds_Applications@acs.org

Read the 2021 editorials on Racial Issues in Chemistry from the ACS Publications journals:

Queer, PoC, creative, MINT
Anal. Chem. No. 2021, 93, 21, 7541-7542
DOI: 10.1021 / acs.analchem.1c01826
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introduction Analytical chemistry‘s Diversity and Inclusion Cover Art Series
Anal. Chem. No. 2021, 93, 3, 1211-1212
DOI: 10.1021 / acs.analchem.0c05466
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Shaping the Future of Higher Education: Practical, community-led initiatives to improve the academic climate
ACS cents. science 2021, XXXX, XXX, XXX-XXX
DOI: 10.1021 / acscentsci.1c00491
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A reflection on Juneteenth and the diversity of our Chemical Neuroscience Community
ACS-Chem. Neurosci. 2021, XXXX, XXX, XXX-XXX
DOI: 10.1021 / acschemneur.1c00378
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Black scientists are not the door to diversity
ACS-Chem. Neurosci. 2021, XXXX, XXX, XXX-XXX
DOI: 10.1021 / acschemneur.1c00375



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