Since January 1996, manuscript submission to Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has been changed to three tracks:

  1. an academy member may "communicate" manuscripts for others that are within the member's area of expertise;

  2. authors may submit their manuscripts directly to the Proceedings office and the office will choose an academy member to "edit" the manuscripts;

  3. an academy member may "contribute" his or her own manuscripts for publication.

The manuscripts submitted through Tracks I and II are reviewed by qualified referees selected by "communicator" members and "editor" members, respectively, while those submitted through Track III are reviewed by a knowledgeable colleague of the "contributor" member prior to the submission.

This change has benefited authors who do not know or have no connection with academy members, since they can directly submit their manuscripts to the Proceedings through Track II. But one may ask whether a manuscript is published faster if...

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