Peer reviewing / peer reviews

This is the process by which papers submitted to journals are sent to others “peers” to be reviewed, often in two waves: a first in which the peer reviewers make a lot of criticisms/suggestions, and a second after the authors resubmit having made changes to the paper and accept and/or reject the criticisms/suggestions. When it works well peer-reviewing can be a genuine contribution to keeping what gets published in the “peer-reviewed literature/journals” accurate and of good quality. Too often it’s a pretty erratic and unreliable system, arguably made worse by the pressures on everyone in the research world to publish more and more.

Details #

Peer review was traditionally anonymous, either singly anonymous, i.e. the reviewers were not identified but the authors of the paper were, or doubly when the authors and editors were expected to adjust things in the paper, like removing the author details but also other things in the text that might have leaked the authors’ identities.

Increasingly there has been a shift toward open peer review where identities are not concealed and reviews are published with the paper. This is no panacea for the many problems of the peer-review system but it is probably a small improvement on the traditional methods.

Try also #

Open peer review

Chapters #

Not specifically addressed anywhere in the book but chapter 10 is a plea for a different, less adversarial and more honest, more constructive mode for criticism and argument about change data more generally.

Online resources #

Typically good page:

Dates #

First created 18.viii.23.

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