Letter from the Editor-in-Chief

Letter from the Editor-in-Chief

Dear JTS Readers,

This issue completes our seventh volume of JTS and seventh year of publication. As the new JTS Editor-in-Chief, I'd like to bring your attention to several changes in the journal that have taken place over the last few months. You can see on the front cover of this issue that the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) is now an office of the new Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA) within the Department of Transportation (DOT). RITA's staff come several groups within DOT: the Research and Special Programs Administration's Office of Innovation, Research, and Education, including the Volpe National Transportation Systems Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and the Transportation Safety Institute in Oklahoma City; the Secretary's Office of Intermodalism; and, of course, BTS. I do believe that JTS will have the opportunity to flourish within this new research environment.

In line with my vision for the journal, our editorial board endorsed a broader scope for JTS. We are just starting to include more applied papers. In the future, some of these papers will be from authors within RITA, keeping you, the readers, informed regarding DOT data and research directions. In this way, we hope to provide more information to researchers and planners, to applied and theoretical statisticians and economists, and to readers involved in numerous aspects of transportation analysis. As always, all papers we publish will undergo a thorough peer review.

You should note two new sections that make their appearance in this issue of the journal—Data Reviews and Book Reviews. Our Data Review editor, Jennifer Brady, will present synopses on new data releases from BTS. In this issue, she gives us an interesting discussion of BTS's America's Freight Transportation Gateways and the Gateways Resource CD, which contain detailed analysis and data on merchandise trade into and out of the United States.

Our second new section is Book Reviews. Vincent Yao, from the Institute for Economic Advancement at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, joins the JTS staff as this section's editor and coordinator. Vincent's contact information appears at the beginning of the new section, so get in touch with him if you would like to author a book review in the future. We thank our editorial board for suggesting these additions—I hope you find them of value in your research.

Finally, this issue includes two new calls for papers. The first is a general call for papers reflecting our broader scope. The second is for a special JTS issue on transportation investment, which is scheduled for publication in 2007. Vincent Yao, along with Cletus C. Coughlin (Vice President and Deputy Director of Research, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis), and Randall W. Eberts (Executive Director of the W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research), will be guest co-editors. If you're interested in submitting a paper, check out the details on page 99.

BTS, as part of RITA, continues to pursue its mission of making the best possible transportation data available to improve the quality of transportation decisionmaking. JTS authors play a key role in this process by providing high-quality quantitative analysis as it applies to transportation issues. I hope the articles in the journal, along with the new sections that appear in this issue, will provide valuable information that you can use in your work.

Peg Young

PEG YOUNG, Ph.D.
Editor-in-Chief