We are pleased to add this inaugural Early Career Scholars in Materials Science Annual Issue to the publication calendar for the Journal of Materials Research. The issue highlights young scientists carrying our research forward in the field of materials. By publishing these papers together, we spotlight this group of early career scholars at a particularly important stage in their careers. Their photos and biographical details are included to personalize the authors and to help other scientists meet them and thus facilitate networking for them. To further extend that exposure, we have published all of these papers on an Open Access basis. It is impressive to see the degree of international cooperation (ten countries represented) and the efforts taken by this group to carry out state of the art research on a global scale.

The topical coverage represented by the nine papers in this issue parallel the diversity of subjects represented by the Materials Research Society. The papers range from the effects of processing on materials to the behavior of defects in controlling materials properties connected to electronic, energy, and structural applications. Central to all of the papers is a perspective on processing-microstructure-property relations – a common theme in materials research.

We are enthusiastic to see how the careers of this group of young professionals (seven faculty members) advance in the coming years. We expect they will continue to grow and prosper in the field of materials and assume future leadership roles. Feel free to contact the editors if you have any questions about publishing a paper in a future Early Career Scholars in Materials Science Annual Issue.

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Correspondence to Gary L. Messing.

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Messing, G.L., Löffler, J., Nan, C. et al. Introduction. Journal of Materials Research 31, 1 (2016).

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