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New Nature EIC Talks Transparency

Magdalena Skipper, who has been named the next editor-in-chief of the journal Nature, tells NPR's Weekend Edition Sunday that she wants to continue the trend of transparency in science.

"Transparency to the process, transparency of the results that leads scientists to make discoveries and come to their conclusions," she says.

Skipper was named to the position earlier this month and will be the journal's eighth editor in 149 years. She will be the first woman as well as the first life scientist to hold the position. She currently is editor-in-chief of Nature Communications and will take over at the Nature spot from Sir Philip Campbell at the beginning of July. Campbell has held the position for 22 years and is moving to the newly created position of editor-in-chief of Springer Nature.

Skipper also tells NPR that it's a shame that it has taken so long for a woman to take on this role, but she's pleased to be a role model. "A big part of me wishes I wasn't the first female editor," Skipper told Stat News earlier this month. "It is a little bit odd for my X chromosome to have acquired so much attention all of the sudden. It really shouldn't matter whether I'm female or male."

At NPR, Skipper also notes that she's aware of the outsize role a Nature publication can have in a researcher's career. She adds that, as editors, they look for novel discoveries, but also surprising ones.