An international conference devoted to the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Geologica Carpathica and the 100th anniversary of the birth of academician Bohuslav Cambel was held at the Smolenice Congress Centre on 9-12 October 2019. The conference contributions in five thematic areas presented the main directions of geoscience research, which form the publication framework of the Geologica Carpathica journal, namely tectonics, structural geology, geochemistry, petrology, mineralogy, stratigraphy, paleobiology, sedimentology and applied geophysics.
The production of Geologica Carpathica began in 1950 under the name “Geological Journal” with the aim of presenting the results of geological research in Slovakia and thus helping to expand the state's raw materials base. During the 1970s, the transformation of the journal into an international scientific journal began under the leadership of the academician Bohuslav Cambel. It is indexed in Web of Science (WOS) since 1996, with an impact factor of 1.69 in 2018. The current editorial board includes the whole spectrum of geoscientists from the Carpathian-Balkan region. The main mission of the Geologica Carpathica is dissemination of the results of research achieved by geoscience from the orogenic regions, but especially from the Carpathians and their adjacent areas. During his introductory address, prof. Peter Moczo, the chairman of the Learned Society of Slovakia and the chairperson of the Committee for scientific degrees, praised the high level of the journal, especially the reasonably low share of autocitations, the high share of foreign authors and the fact that articles published in Geologica Carpathica are cited mainly in world-leading geoscience journals. The aim of the conference was not only the presentation of the latest scientific results, many of which were cross-cutting, but the conference also sought to look at the history of the journal and to open discussion to future direction of the journal at a time when science is threatened by predatory journals exclusively focused on profit and not on science. The practices of such predatory journals were analyzed by doc. Vojtěch Janoušek from Prague, the chief editor of the WOS impacted Journal of Geosciences, in his conference speech. He pointed out that the absence of reviews or dubious reviews of contributions in predatory journals (in order to publish quickly) means that distorting and inaccurate information is published, threatening the essence of scientific research. Prof. Lutz Nasdala from Vienna, who is Editor-in-Chief of the Springer journal Mineralogy and Petrology, one of the oldest mineralogical journals in the world founded in 1872, highlighted the friendly attitude of our editorial board members and their certain complementarity. Also, he emphasized the fact that Geologica Carpathica is a broad-spectrum geoscientific medium with strong regional focus. The latter (emphasis on regional relevance) does not apply anymore to Mineralogy and Petrology, where even actual final production of the magazine is taking place abroad, Nasdala said. Prior to the scientific part of the conference, there was a meeting of the editorial board, where, apart from the editorial agenda, a discussion started on the latest assessment of the journal made by Professor Reto Gieré from the University of Pennsylvania. Gieré has recommended adding an English subtitle to the journal name Geologica Carpathica, to include more review articles, and to organize special monothematic issues.
At a special conference ceremony, Bohuslav Cambel's medal for an extraordinary contribution to the development of geosciences was awarded to doc. Dr. Vojtěch Janoušek from Prague, who is also the author of a world widespread software GCDkit facilitating geochemical research of rocks. Positive responses to the conference from abroad and great interest in the conference of the best current domestic geological experts underlines the growing awareness that without high-quality journals the development of science is hardly conceivable. The international position and tradition of Geologica Carpathica is obliging us to the further development of this journal. The partner of the conference was the company DPP Žilina who carries out geological works on line constructions. Other sponsors were UNESCO, Nafta a.s. and Unichema, s.r.o.
Text: Igor Broska
Photo: Ján Madarás, Igor Broska, Martin Ondrejka