Manuscripts Published in a Specific Chemistry Journal Must Be Both Important and Suitable According to Peer Reviewers
A Review of:
Bornmann, L., & Daniel, H.-D. (2010). The manuscript reviewing process: empirical research on review requests, review sequences, and decision rules in peer review. Library & Information Science Research, 32(1), 5-12. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.lisr.2009.07.010
Objective – To examine the peer review process at a single journal.
Design – Analysis of business records.
Setting – Peer review system of a single journal.
Subjects – Documents produced when reviewing manuscripts submitted for publication to journal Angewandte Chemie International Edition and reviewed in the year 2000.
Methods – Peer review process information was extracted from the journal’s archives. Various aspects, such as review sequences and decision rules, were analysed and summarised in tables.
Main results – Of the 1899 manuscripts reviewed in the year 2000, 46% (n = 878) were accepted for publication and 54% (n = 1021) were rejected. On average, a manuscript received 2.6 reviews before an editor made a publication decision. Just over half (n = 962, approx. 51%) of manuscripts were subject to two review steps. A small number of manuscripts (n = 104, approx. 5.5%) were subject to 5, 6 or 7 review steps. The more steps an article was subject to, the greater likelihood it would be accepted. Editors “generally follow a so-called clear-cut rule” (p.11) in which manuscripts accepted for publication must be considered both important and suitable for publication by at least two peer reviewers.
Conclusion – The results “give a sense of commitment [and care] ...probably typical of most prestigious journals” (p.11).
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