Transparency in peer review

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Go to the profile of Elizabeth Moylan
Sep 05, 2017
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Elizabeth Moylan, Senior Editor of Research Integrity at BMC, talks about the role played by transparency in different models of peer review.

  • - I'm also a great believer in opening up peer review, 00:03
  • so there's a role for transparency in peer review. 00:07
  • And that might be at the level 00:10
  • of naming the handling editor, 00:12
  • naming the peer reviewers on a paper. 00:13
  • It may be sharing the content of the peer review report, 00:16
  • so EMBO started this with 00:19
  • their transparent peer review in 2009. 00:21
  • Nature Communications started a trial of that in 2016, 00:24
  • and if you want to go further than transparency, 00:31
  • then there is open peer review, 00:34
  • which is where authors get to know 00:36
  • who the reviewers are because their names are shared, 00:38
  • and if the article is published, 00:41
  • then those comments accompany publication 00:44
  • with the reviewers' names, 00:46
  • so the whole reading public can see 00:48
  • who reviewed the article. 00:51
  • And I think that really makes peer review very accountable. 00:52
  • It makes the editor accountable 00:54
  • for who they've chosen to peer review, 00:55
  • and it makes the peer reviewers accountable 00:57
  • for what they've said. 00:59
  • It can be hard to do. 01:01
  • It's not easy to review openly. 01:03
  • But I think the benefits are that 01:07
  • it gives reviewers recognition 01:09
  • for the work they do, 01:11
  • and it really helps early career researchers 01:12
  • see the benefit that peer review can bring. 01:14
  • And, in fact, there are people doing studies 01:18
  • on just how a manuscript has changed 01:20
  • as a reason for having that open peer review, 01:23
  • and how it's improved. 01:26
Go to the profile of Elizabeth Moylan

Elizabeth Moylan

Senior Editor (Peer Review Strategy & Innovation), BioMed Central

Elizabeth has a PhD and post-doc from the University of Oxford, UK. In 2004, she moved into publishing as an in-house Editor handling peer review on the BMC-series journals. In her present role as Senior Editor (Peer Review Strategy and Innovation), Elizabeth supports and initiate the development and implementation of new approaches to peer review and related policy at BMC.

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