Editorial structure

Background and philosophy

The Puget Sound Science Review builds upon ideas explored and addressed in the Puget Sound Partnership's April 2011 Sound Science Update, emphasizing the creation of synthesis documents by small author groups of leading scientists (Ruckelshaus et al. 2011). Future content will derive from a community of commissioned and volunteer scientists led by an editorial board based primarily at academic departments within the University of Washington. These editors will be recognized authorities in their subject areas and will recruit and review contributions from a wide range of experts from state and federal agencies, academic institutions, area tribes and other sources. This "topic editor" structure is modeled after a similar structure developed at the Encyclopedia of Earth, "a comprehensive resource built and maintained by a diverse community of scholars."

Puget Sound Partnership logoEncyclopedia of Earth logo

A knowledge network

By bringing together scientists from across disciplines, the Puget Sound Science Review takes advantage of an already expansive knowledge network and seeks to provide the foremost scientific resource for understanding the current status and health of the Puget Sound ecosystem.


The review covers six broad topics related to Puget Sound science:

Ecosystem-based management: historical and current policy related to protection of the Puget Sound ecosystem; ecosystem indicators.

Biology: information on the status and health of species of the Puget Sound region, including vertebrates, invertebrates, tunicates, plants, fungi and lichens.

Chemistry: marine, freshwater, sediment, pollution, stormwater.

Physical environment: geology, bathymetry, cartography, meteorology, physical oceanography and hydrology.

Threats: climate change and population growth, shoreline armoring, eutrophication, water pollution. 

Social and economic sciences (chapter forthcoming): quality of life index, fisheries, culture, history.

Senior Science Editor

Each topic will be curated by a Senior Science Editor who will gather and review core documents from contributors. Materials are then integrated into a dynamic, web-based publication organized into new chapters or addendums to existing content.

Collaborative roles

In all, six collaborative roles are specified: Senior Science Editor, Assistant Science Editor, Editorial Assistant, nominated collaborator, nominated contributor, and registered user (un-credentialed commentator), each with varying rights and permissions according to their prescribed role. Collaborators and contributors can be self-nominated subject to approval of credentials. Guidelines for approval will be established with the help of the Puget Sound Science Panel.

Content integration

Upload and comment boxes will allow a broad network of scientists to share ideas and information through a dynamic editing process.

As it develops, the Puget Sound Science Review will become important source material to the Puget Sound Partnership as they periodically renew their legislatively mandated reporting and analysis, including the biennial State of the Sound Report and future Puget Sound Science Updates. The Review is intended to free the partnership to focus more on policy decisions, and less on gathering the source science behind these decisions.

The Review, which derived from the 2011 Puget Sound Science Update, will be the basis for future Updates and the biennial State of the Sound report.

The partnership's Puget Sound Science Panel will serve as advisers through the process, and the Puget Sound Institute will be a bridge to the resources and independence of the academic research community.