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Journal of Scientific Exploration  
Language English
Edited by Peter Sturrock
Publication details
Publisher Society for Scientific Exploration (USA)
Publication history founded in 1987
Frequency quarterly
ISSN 0892-3310
OCLC 15153049

The Journal of Scientific Exploration (JSE), founded in 1987, is a quarterly publication of the Society for Scientific Exploration. According to its mission statement, the journal provides a forum for research on topics "outside the established disciplines of mainstream science."[1] However, due to its scope of examining anomalies, fringe science, protoscience, and other controversial topics, the editors of the JSE acknowledge that the periodical "publishes claimed observations and proffered explanations that will seem more speculative or less plausible than in some mainstream disciplinary journals. Nevertheless, those observations and explanations must conform to rigorous standards of observational techniques and logical argument."[2]


Topics and policies

The Journal's website describes the publication's purpose as providing "a professional forum for presentations, criticism, and debate concerning topics which are for various reasons ignored or studied inadequately within mainstream science", and describes the Journal as a "critical forum of rationality and observational evidence for the often strange claims at the fringes of science."[1]

Responding in part to opinion surveys results indicating that many mainstream scientists were interested in reasoned examination and debate about unidentified flying objects, the JSE was initially established to provide a forum for three main fields that had largely been neglected by mainstream science: ufology, cryptozoology, and parapsychology. They have also published research articles, essays and book reviews on many topics, including the philosophy of science; pre-Columbian trans-oceanic contact; astrology, alternative medicine; the process of peer review for controversial topics;[3] astrology; consciousness; reincarnation, minority opinion scientific theories; and paranormal phenomena.[1][4]



Bernard Haisch and Martha Sims, respectively past editor in chief and past executive director, describe the Journal of Scientific Exploration "as peer-reviewed Journal following the customs and standards of academic journals but designed specifically for the scholarly study of anomalies".[1][4] If an article or essay paper is accepted "but there remain points of disagreement between authors and referee(s), the reviewer(s) may be given the option of having their opinion(s) published "subject to the Editor-in-Chief's judgment as to length, wording, and the like".[2] The policy of the journal is to maintain a critical view by presenting both sides of an argument so as not to advocate for or against any of the published topics.[5][6]

The JSE publishes letters or commentary[7] which dispute or critique articles, and also typically allows authors to publish rejoinders.

Scope of research

Some observers regard the JSE as a legitimate attempt to explore the frontiers of science,[8][9] while others view it as a forum for scientifically objectionable or dubious ideas.[10] Some academics have noted that JSE publishes on anomalous issues, topics often on the fringe of science.[11] The journal is not indexed in Web of Science, an indexing service for leading scientific journals, provided by Thomson Reuters.

Of the SSE and JSE, journalist Michael Lemonick writes, "Pretty much anything that might have shown up on The X-Files or in the National Enquirer shows up first here. But what also shows up is a surprising attitude of skepticism."[12]

Kendrick Frazier, Editor of Skeptical Inquirer and CSICOP fellow has criticized JSE and argues that:

"The JSE, while presented as neutral and objective, appears to hold a hidden agenda. They seem to be interested in promoting fringe topics as real mysteries and they tend to ignore most evidence to the contrary. They publish 'scholarly' articles promoting the reality of dowsing, neo-astrology, ESP, and psychokinesis. Most of the prominent and active members are strong believers in the reality of such phenomena."[13]

Key personnel



  1. ^ a b c d "Journal of Scientific Exploration website". Retrieved 2008-07-12.  
  2. ^ a b "JSE Instructions for Authors". Retrieved 2008-07-12.  
  3. ^ Juan Miguel Campanario and Brian Martin, "Challenging dominant physics paradigms" (2004) Journal of Scientific Exploration, vol. 18, no. 3, Fall 2004, pp. 421-438
  4. ^ a b c B.Haisch, M.Sims (2004). "A Retrospective on the Journal of Scientific Exploration" (pdf). Journal of Scientific Exploration 18 (1).  
  5. ^ "As an example for presenting both sides of an argument (Mars effect)" ( – Scholar search). Journal of Scientific Exploration 11 (1). Spring 1997.  
  6. ^ "As an example for presenting both sides of an argument (Roswell):" ( – Scholar search). Journal of Scientific Exploration 12 (1). Spring 1998.  
  7. ^ such as Klass, Philip J. 2000. "Response to 'Valentich Disappearance New Evidence and a New Conclusion' by Richard F. Haines and Paul Norman" Journal of Scientific Exploration, Volume 14, Issue 4, p. 646
  8. ^ A Resource List for the Spirituality and Psychiatry Special Interest Group of the Royal College of Psychiatrists
  9. ^ Journals and Other Media at the Department of History of the University of North Texas
  10. ^ See archives on [1]
  11. ^ Cross A (2004). The Flexibility of Scientific Rhetoric: A Case Study of UFO Researchers. Qualitative Sociology. Volume 27, Number 1 / March, 2004
  12. ^ Michael D. Lemonick/Gainesville (2005-05-24). "Science on the Fringe". Time magazine.,9171,1064461,00.html. Retrieved 2008-06-02.  
  13. ^ CSICOP Responds to the Recent UFO Report Sponsored by the Society for Scientific Exploration (SSE)
  14. ^ ManyOne - Management: Dr. Bernard Haisch, Ph.D.
  15. ^ Henry H. Bauer Papers, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

External links


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