alexa Society for the Study of Evolution

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Society for the Study of Evolution

The work of the Committee revealed that such a keen interest in the problems of evolution that it was felt that a larger and more permanent organization was needed than a temporary Committee of the National Research Council. This was particularly true in view of the obvious need for a journal that would include evolutionary studies from the diverse fields of biology and thus help to bridge the gaps between them. Informal correspondence between Professor Dobzhansky, Dr. Simpson, Dr. Mayr, and other members of the Committee, revealed much enthusiasm for such a journal, as well as for a society that would support it. Dr. Emerson suggested that the dormant Society for the Study of Speciation should join forces with the National Research Council group in the establishment of a Society for the Study of Evolution. An organization meeting was held in St. Louis on March 30, 1946, at which Dr. Emerson presided. At this meeting, attended by fifty-seven biologists, the Society for the Study of Evolution was officially founded, a tentative policy adopted, and a slate of officers elected.

Over 500 members joined the Society during the first year of its existence, and on the occasion of the First Annual Meeting in Boston, December 28-31, 1946, the Society felt sufficiently well established to authorize publication of a research journal in the field of evolution. In a wave of enthusiasm and optimism the Council voted to publish 1500 copies of the Journal. Thanks to this decision the Society lived for years on the sale of back copies. A grant had been awarded to the Society by the American Philosophical Society to make this publication possible. At this same meeting, a constitution was also adopted by the Society.

Despite considerable interest in assuming control of the American Naturalist the Society decided to found a new journal. Some of the older members wanted the word "Organic" included in the Journal title but in the final vote the title "Evolution" won out, not only for its simplicity but also because it corresponded to Ecology and Genetics. Several long defunct journals had that same name and efforts to avoid legal difficulties included leters to the former publishers all of which were returned for a "better address". During the fall of 1946 six firms were invited to submit bids for the printing. All but Lancaster Press declined to submit a serious bid because of the post war printing backlog and the great paper shortage. Additionally there was a shortage of suitable manuscripts and at least one paper was written just to fill an issue

Following policies established during its first year of existence, the function of the Society is to promote the study of organic evolution in all its aspects. The Society is a common meeting ground for representatives of all fields of science concerned with organic evolution, including genetics, paleontology (vertebrate, invertebrate, plant), taxonomy (animal, plant), ecology, anthropology, and others. The journal EVOLUTION is established in order to stimulate evolutionary research and to bring its results together in readily accessible form. A journal broadly devoted to the particular subject of evolution will help to counteract the previous extreme scattering of pertinent literature, which has handicapped evolutionary study by the tendency to confine results within numerous different narrowly specialized groups. The journal will not publish taxonomic monographs or other descriptive studies properly addressed to a more specialized audience, but it will encourage the expression of the evolutionary significance of such material and will make this available to the broader group of students of evolution in general. Research primarily directed toward various evolutionary problems will also be encouraged.

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The following is the list of scholars from Society for the Study of Evolution who contributed and/or serves as editors for one or more OMICS International journals and conferences