The Council of Science Editors (CSE) began life in 1957 as the Conference of Biology Editors (CBE), originally organized by the American Institute of Biological Sciences and funded by the National Science Foundation primarily as an organization for biological science editors. Eight years later in 1965, the organization incorporated as the Council of Biology Editors and soon thereafter expanded membership to include all scientific publishing endeavors from science editors to copy editors.
Over time the scope of the council expanded, until January 1, 2000, when the Council of Biology Editors became the Council of Science Editors, a name that more accurately reflects its vast and varied membership.
Today, CSE functions autonomously, relying on the vigor of its dedicated members to attain the goals of the organization. Any individual interested in the purpose of the CSE is eligible for regular membership.
CSE enjoys close relationships with a number of scientific publishing organizations, both national and international. In the 1960s, CBE directly encouraged or inspired a number of related international organizations including the Latin American Association of Editors of Biological Journals, a forerunner of European Association of Science Editors (EASE), and the Association of Biological Editors of Japan.
CSE continues to have an international impact. In October 2007, CSE organized a Global Theme Issue on Poverty and Human Development, in which 235 science journals from developed and developing countries simultaneously published articles on this topic of worldwide interest. CSE serves as an administrative partner on the African Journal Partnership Project, which has the mission of building capacity and visibility for African health and medical journals.
Publications: From CBE Newsletter to Science Editor and beyond
Starting as a simple mimeographed & stapled CBE Newsletter distributed “at no regular intervals but whenever some material of interest to members is ready and timely” (quoted in Tucker, 2000), the Council’s regular publication has grown into a full-featured scholarly journal first as CBE Views in 1978 and finally becoming Science Editor in 2000 to reflect the Council’s expanded scope and new name. Today, Science Editor is a quarterly publication and serves as a “forum for the exchange of information and ideas among professionals concerned with publishing in the sciences.”
In addition, since its founding, the Council has been publishing authoritative reference works beginning with the first edition of the Style Manual for Biological Journals in 1960 and continuing to the present with the publication of Scientific Style and Format: The CSE Manual for Authors, Editors, and Publishers, Eighth Edition published in 2014.
Editors of the CBE Newsletter, CBE Views, & Science Editor
- 1959-1962 Fred R Cagle
- 1963-1969 Robert E Gordon
- 1969-1974 Karl Heumann
- 1975 David Frost
- 1975-1978 Bernard Forscher
- 1978-1979 Bernard Forscher
- 1979-1980 Evelyn S Myers
- 1981 Margaret Broadbent
- 1981-1986 Stephen R Geiger
- 1987-1991 Gisella Pollock
- 1991-1993 Sharon Boots
- 1993-1994 Alan Brush
- 1994-1998 Martha M Tacker
- 1998-1999 Barbara Gastel
- 2000-2010 Barbara Gastel
- 2010-2011 Rebecca Benner
- 2011 Teresa Melcher
- 2012-2014 Patty Baskin
Altman, PL. The Council from 1957 to 1991: CBE Foundations for CSE. Science Editor. 2007;30:111-113.
Krischer D. CSE’s First 50 Years: Blazing the Trail for Science Editors Everywhere. Science Editor. 2007;30:39-40.
Tacker MM. CBE Views: A Look Back. Science Editor. 2000;23:3-7.