When it comes to imparting cutting-edge, peer-reviewed psychiatric
research—and doing it in a clear and engaging manner—The
American Journal of Psychiatry (AJP) keeps proving it stands above the
rest of the pack.
Amariah Brigham, M.D., an APA founder, published the first psychiatric
journal in the summer of 1844—The American Journal of
Published in 1844 under the title The American Journal of Insanity,
AJP is the oldest continuously published medical specialty journal in the
country, according to its editorial director, Michael Roy. Over time it has
become the most cited publication in its field of psychiatry, Roy
Now comes news that the venerable journal has been cited with 99 other
publications as one of the most influential scientific journals to be
published over the past century.
According to a recent poll of 686 members of record of the Special
Libraries Association's (SLA) Division of BioMedical and Life Sciences,
AJP received more votes than any of the six other psychiatric medical
journals reviewed by the division's members.
"The laurels and weight of 100 years are on our shoulders," the
journal's editor in chief, Robert Freedman, M.D., told Psychiatric
The American Journal of Insanity, a 100-page quarterly, was the
predecessor of AJP, which is published monthly. AJP was
recognized as the most influential psychiatric publication by an international
scientific library association.
The Special Libraries Association's Division of BioMedical and Life
Sciences (DBIO) decided to conduct the poll as part of the library
association's 100th anniversary. Division members who took the poll were asked
to name the 100 most influential journals in biology and medicine over the
last 100 years. The polling instrument was constructed by an international"
panel of experienced DBIO members who worked at institutions with
particularly notable biomedical and life sciences journal collections and
clientele," according to a DBIO report of the process posted on the SLA
The goal of the poll was for the final vote to yield a balanced assortment
of journals (offering original research) in these three areas: clinical
medicine and allied health sciences (AJP's category), molecular and
cellular biology, and natural history.
"When one considers the vast number of journals out there—even
with an entity limiting the number of possible options from which to
choose—it would be considered an honor just to make that list of
available options," Roy told Psychiatric News. "There are
over 35,000 journals listed in PubMed and the molecular biology databases of
the National Center for Biotechnology Information. This is why the top 100 is
a big deal."
On June 16 the Special Libraries Association will name the top 10 most
influential journals—across all categories—from the top 100
already named. Then, from the top 10 journals, the library association will
bestow the ultimate honor: naming the single most influential "Journal
of the Centennial."
Both announcements will be made that day at the Special Libraries
Association's Centennial Conference in Washington, D.C., at an awards ceremony
featuring a roll call of all 100 winners and their publishers.
A list of the top 100 most influential scientific journals is posted
Information about the polling methodology and participants is posted at<http://units.sla.org/division/dbio/publications/resources/DBIO100.pdf?>.▪