SSA Names 2021 Outstanding Reviewers

14 March 2022–Christopher DuRoss of the U.S. Geological Survey, Golden, Adam Ringler of the U.S. Geological Survey, Albuquerque, and Vaclav Vavrycuk of the Institute of Geophysics in the Czech Republic, are the recipients of SSA’s 2021 Outstanding Reviewer awards.

In recent interviews, the recipients agreed that reviewing is an essential part of their careers, and that the process has given them a better sense of the state of research in across a variety of topics in seismology.

Vavrycuk was chosen as the outstanding reviewer for the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America (BSSA) by Editor-in-Chief P. Martin Mai. Mai said Vavrycuk poured his “knowledge and experience into the work of others to help them improve … in a sign of true collaborative spirit.”

In a recent interview, Vavrycuk said reviewing is a service that researchers provide to their scientific communities. “If we are willing to review papers and do this job properly, we all profit,” he said. “This is obvious, because we all are authors and we need the competent advice of others on how to improve our papers.”

Ringler was recognized by Seismological Research Letters (SRL) Editor-in-Chief Allison Bent for his “insightful, constructive and thoughtful suggestions to authors,” as well as his willingness to take on a heavy workload for the journal.

His time as a reviewer has made Ringler more conscious of how he presents his own research and which journals would be best to reach his target audience, he said. “When you’re doing the research and writing the article, you think more about how this is going to be communicated to the audience you’re trying to reach, in a way that will be efficient for everyone.”

DuRoss helped The Seismic Record (TSR) get off to a good start in its inaugural year, with Editor-in-Chief Keith Koper commending him for “promptly delivering comprehensive and cogent advice in a professional manner.”

Like Ringler and Vavrycuk, DuRoss sees reviewing “as a critical part of the research process, the dissemination and communication of results. Having somebody who can critically review that work is essential,” he said.

SSA is holding a publishing workshop on how to review and be reviewed on 19 April at this year’s Annual Meeting in Bellevue, Washington. Led by Mai, Bent and former SRL Editor-in-Chief John Ebel of Boston College, the workshop will focus on how to review colleagues’ papers in constructive and reliable ways. The workshop is geared toward students and early-career seismologists, but is open to all Annual Meeting attendees.