Reviewer Roles and Responsibilities

The quality of the research generally depends on the quality of the evaluation. With this in mind, peer review is the principal mechanism by which the quality of research is judged. Funding is generally awarded on the basis of peer review. The majority of journals submit manuscripts to at least two reviewers and in some cases more than three when a statistician is required to review the calculations.

1- Reviewer responsibilities toward authors

  • Providing written, unbiased, constructive feedback in a timely manner on the scholarly merits and the scientific value of the work, together with the documented basis for the reviewer’s opinion
  • Indicating whether the writing is clear, concise, and relevant and rating the work’s composition, scientific accuracy, originality, and interest to the journal’s readers
  • Avoiding personal comments or criticism
  • Maintaining the confidentiality of the review process: not sharing, discussing with third parties, or disclosing information from the reviewed paper

2- Reviewer responsibilities toward editors

  • Notifying the editor immediately if unable to review in a timely manner and, if able, providing the names of alternative reviewers
  • Alerting the editor about any potential personal, financial or perceived conflict of interest and declining to review when a conflict exists (see section "conflict of interest")
  • Complying with the editor’s written instructions on the journal’s expectations for the scope, content, and quality of the review
  • Use the journal's evaluation sheet
  • Providing a thoughtful, fair, constructive, and informative critique of the submitted work, which may include supplementary material provided to the journal by the author
  • Determining scientific merit, originality, and scope of the work; indicating ways to improve it; and, if requested, recommending acceptance or rejection using whatever rating scale the editor deems most useful
  • Refraining from direct author contact

3- Reviewer responsibilities toward readers

  • Ensuring that the methods and analysis are adequately detailed to allow the reader to judge the scientific merit of the study design and be able to replicate the study
  • Ensuring that the article cites all relevant work by other scientists

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