Two perspective on peer review

To publish articles open access has been discussed for a long time and we have come a long way. We have not come as far when it comes to publishing scientific books open access. The book is still an important form for publishing in many sciences – mainly Humanities and Social Sciences. A project with members from five Swedish universities and financed by the National Library, Swedish research counsil and The Swedish Foundation for Humanities and Social Sciences have been investigating how the book could be strengthen as a publishing form and meet the new demands in scientific publishing. The final report is now available and the main recommendation is to start a national consortium which would peer review scientific books. Read the whole report A national Consortium for Open Academic Books in Sweden.

The other perspective on peer review is Scholarly Kitchen’s newest podcast about PeerJ – a peer review journal which uses open review and a different kind of business model for publishing scientific journals. Scholarly Kitchen interviews Peter Binfield, one of the founders. PeerJ publishes peer reviewed articles and pre-print articles. According to a survey PeerJ conducted among its authors, 42% of authors think that the publishing process was the best they had ever been involved in and 94% would recommend PeerJ to their colleagues. According to the business modell all co-authors must become members (life-time membership) but they will be able to publish their following articles in PeerJ with no other costs. To publish open access might cost anywhere between $1000 and $3000 per article! For PeerJ means peer review an objective determination of scientific and methodological soundness and not subjective ideas about impact, novelty or intrest. Read an interview with an author who has published with PeerJ. Unfortunately PeerJ only publishes articles in Biological Sciences, Medical Sciences and Health Sciences.

Pieta Eklund