Spotlight on the unseen majority – the way to open community-driven publishing for global soil biodiversity


  • Nico Eisenhauer German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig & Leipzig University
  • Willi E. R. Xylander Senckenberg Museum of Natural History Görlitz
  • Anton Potapov German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig & Leipzig University & Senckenberg Museum of Natural History Görlitz



Data mobilization, policy advice, forum for discussion, open access, open science


Soil biodiversity does not only represent a major share of the total Earth’s biodiversity, but has also major importance for the functioning of terrestrial ecosystems. This realization has triggered an unprecedented scientific, public, and political interest in the distribution, drivers, trends, and conservation measures of soil biodiversity. Here, we outline the role of the journal Soil Organisms in this rapidly developing field and our planned approaches to address the most pressing scientific and societal issues related to soil biodiversity. In the last couple of years, Soil Organisms has played a pioneering role in the movement to mobilize soil biodiversity and function data, with the goal to become the hub for unbiased soil biodiversity knowledge publishing. We plan to follow this successful route and introduce new approaches, such as requiring authors to share their raw data and statistical code along with the results to ensure reproducibility, we will accept submissions of manuscripts published as preprints, and we invite authors to submit their rejected papers along with their responses to reviewers’ comments from other journals. Next to the already existing and successful paper formats of Research Articles, Invited Reviews, and Calls for collaboration, we will introduce Editors‘ Highlights and Invited Comments to complement the journal’s portfolio in a way that ensures fast information flow on important developments related to soil organisms. Together with our Editorial Board of international specialists in soil biodiversity, ecology, and taxonomy, representing expertise across taxa, scientific disciplines, and research approaches, we aim to further establish Soil Organisms as a globally recognized and esteemed scientific platform, serving as a worldwide forum for researchers in the fields of soil organismic and functional biodiversity.


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How to Cite

Eisenhauer, N., Xylander, W. E. R., & Potapov, A. (2023). Spotlight on the unseen majority – the way to open community-driven publishing for global soil biodiversity. SOIL ORGANISMS, 95(3), 173–177.