Introducing Jot — a new open-source tool that help researchers with journal selection

There’s a new tool available to help researchers choose the most appropriate scientific journal for the potential publication of their manuscript.

Say hello to Jot: a free, open-source web application that matches manuscripts in the fields of biomedicine and life sciences with suitable journals, based on a manuscript’s title, abstract, and (optionally) citations.

Developed by the Townsend Lab at the Yale School of Public Health, Jot gathers a wealth of data on journal quality, impact, fit, and open access options that can be explored through a dashboard of linked, interactive visualizations.

While other journal search tools are available online, Jot is believed to be the first that is free and open source, and the most comprehensive in terms of the scope of journals and metadata that it provides. Moreover, Jot creates a unique, composite metric of journal ‘fit’ and impact, giving researchers a clearer idea of the potential publication of a given submission.

“We hope that by sharing Jot with the wider research community—without cost and with the freedom to modify, tailor, and improve it—authors can benefit from a more comprehensive and informed view of their publishing options,” said Jeffrey Townsend, Yale’s Elihu Professor of Biostatistics and professor of ecology and evolutionary biology. “Jot has proven useful for our laboratory and has been enthusiastically adopted by our colleagues.”

Townsend and Stephen Gaffney, an associate research scientist in biostatistics at Yale, co-authored a commentary introducing Jot to the greater scientific community in December. The commentary appears in the Journal of the Medical Library Association.

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