Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2014, Vol. 69 ›› Issue (7): 1025-1038.doi: 10.11821/dlxb201407014

• Orginal Article • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Comparison of the mainstream geographical journals between the West and China

Xiaoling LI()   

  1. Guangzhou Institute of Geography, Editorial Office of Tropical Geography, Guangzhou 510070, China
  • Received:2014-05-10 Revised:2014-06-12 Online:2014-07-20 Published:2014-07-20
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of Guangdong, China, No.S2013010013320;


Taking Acta Geographica Sinica (AGS), Journal of Geographical Sciences (JGS), Annals of the Association of American Geographers (AAAG) and Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers (TIBG) as typical representatives of mainstream journals in China and western countries, according to the information from the respective official websites and documents, and with the background and development history of each journal, the author of this paper makes a comparative analysis on the aims of the journals, report content, internationalization degree, characteristics and their requirement for the articles. The results show that: 1) In terms of the arms of publication, AAAG and TIBG focus on their discipline construction, express definitely their high orientation of international authority, and emphasize contribution of publication to the discipline knowledge, i.e. they have specific and definite requirements for innovativeness, while AGS and JGS, in addition to serving the discipline construction, put forward their objective to serve national economic construction, and emphasize the high level and originality of publication. 2) On the report content, AAAG laid stress on physical geography for its publication in the first two decades, but human geography has been in a dominant position in the following period; attention is also paid to environment science and geographical methodology in recent years; and basic theory study for geography is deepening, but the publication tendency of weakening physical geography becomes a problem faced by the comprehensive geography journals. For the publication of AGS, the ratio of physical geography and human geography is reasonably balanced. JGS pays attention to physical geography and comprehensive research involving physical and human geography. Both of them lay stress on empirical research articles. 3) As for the degree of internationalization, the authors of all selected journals are mainly from their own country, the international authors mostly come from USA, UK, and Canada. The internationalization degree of authors of AAAG is the highest, and the internationalization degree of editors and editorial boards of those journals is similar to that of the authors, with a slight difference, the proportion of international editorial members in TIBG is the highest, but the number of international editorial members of AAAG is the biggest. As international mainstream journals, they are all included by the most important international retrieval systems. 4) As for journal characteristics, AGS and JGS pay more attention to empirical research; AAAG mainly features in the special issues and the presidential speech, and TIBG is mainly embodied in virtual issues and articles' contribution requirements.

Key words: mainstream geographical journals, AAAG, TIBG, Acta Geographica Sinica, Journal of Geographical Sciences