Thu 7 Jul 2022 6:08PM

Should EarthArXiv expand beyond English? If so, how do we do this right?

BC Bruce Caron Public Seen by 102

We routinely reject non-English submissions. However, our moderation policy is to check for formal aspects of the submission, not to evaluate the science claims. So, we should be able to extend our languages to include non-English submissions. Any thoughts? Any ideas about process?


Giacomo Falchetta Fri 8 Jul 2022 3:02PM

I disagree with the proposition: a place like EarthArXiv should - in my opinion - be comfortable for any person in the field around the world, and - may we like it or not - English has since at least half a century become the standard language for scientific communication.


Dasapta Erwin Irawan Sun 10 Jul 2022 4:25AM

@Bruce Caron Thank you for bringing this issue to the community. As a citizen of non-English speaking country, off course I agree with your idea. It's very much inline with my other project Translate Science (with Victor Venema et al). Because these days, we have tools to read works written in non-English language. But I also give respect to @Giacomo Falchetta 's opinion. So let's wait for the opinion from other members in this group. Meanwhile, we could suggest non-English preprint to be sent to RINarxiv.


Bruce Caron Mon 11 Jul 2022 10:00PM

EarthArXiv has no mission to be encyclopedic in its scope. If there are other repositories in various languages for Earth science content, perhaps we could just curate a list of these to help others find them? RINarxiv is a good example. Any other examples?


Olivier Pourret Tue 12 Jul 2022 8:18AM


It would be great. I am currently working with several journals seeing how to consider multilingualism. I can help for French.

I am also working with Dasapta and Victor on the Translate Science project.

Further see my opinion on my blog https://olivierpourret.wordpress.com/2022/04/28/multilingualism-needed/




Elif Oral Tue 12 Jul 2022 8:46PM

Hello all,

I like the idea of accepting submissions in different languages, but I don't see how to do it consistently in long term. As Bruce said, the moderation is mostly a quick scan of the papers to check if they are relevant for geosciences. And the scanner is currently a EA moderator, not a software. That means either the moderator(s) is supposed to understand the language of the submitted paper, or we get support from translate projects. If we continue with the first case, we will need to specify and update the accepted languages depending on the moderation crew. I wonder what you think.


Jess Hillman Wed 13 Jul 2022 9:26PM

As Elif said, I like the idea of opening up to more languages; however, moderation may be the issue. For some languages Google can readily translate the text, allowing anyone to assess the general content of the document for moderation, but this isn't the case for all languages. I think it needs some consideration in order to avoid confusion going forward.


brandon Wed 13 Jul 2022 9:58PM

As long as one can adhere to the current submission criteria, extending to non-English submission is a great idea! @Bruce Caron, have you (or anyone) noticed any language in particular, or is it quite variable?

I have mixed feelings on people using a web service to "evaluate" something that is in a language they have no knowledge of, but perhaps I'm being too restrictive in my thinking.

On the flip side, perhaps there is an opportunity here to expand the reviewer/moderator pool?

Another thought --- many journals require the authors to include potential reviewers for the submitted manuscript. Perhaps any non-English manuscript could include something similar?


Dasapta Erwin Irawan Wed 13 Jul 2022 10:17PM

@brandon Google Translate works very good with Indonesian and I can help with submissions in Indonesian.


brandon Wed 13 Jul 2022 10:41PM

Thanks, @Dasapta Erwin Irawan, that's helpful.

One of the reasons I'm hesitant is that I, personally, have no real way of knowing whether or not Google Translate (or any other service) is "good" with any language other than maybe Spanish or German.

On that note though, perhaps a simple listing of acceptable Google Translate languages is more beneficial in this context?


Cara Manning Thu 14 Jul 2022 1:02PM

I am happy with the idea of publishing non-English submissons but I don't think the current moderation process (with new moderators every week who all have different language skills) is optimized for this. I don't know if it's possible, but one option would be to have a separate portal for non-English submissions, and a dedicated moderator who would match each submission to a moderator with the right language skills to check it. Otherwise, perhaps there could be a way to sort or tag the non-English submissions into a different folder during submission that a specific moderator would monitor. This would likely also require expanding our pool of moderators to bring in new people with different language skills.


Bruce Caron Thu 21 Jul 2022 5:21PM

It seems like step ONE is the compile a list of preprint services that support non-English content.

HERE is a google doc for people (Including YOU) to add the names of preprint services that support languages other than English:



brandon Sun 24 Jul 2022 11:41PM

@Bruce Caron I added several others to the spreadsheet. I did add a few that were either English only, or unspecified specifically one way or the other. I added these for reference so any/every one else doesn't spend time checking something which is already on the list.

Having said that, some of the criteria is fairly elusive; some of them may require further digging.