The Springer Nature journal BMC Biology plans to provide rival publications with peer reviews of papers it rejects. BMC Biologyaims to cut down on wasted time in the peer-review process by providing these reviews for reuse, for instance, when the manuscript did not fit the scope of the publication.
“We know academics’ time is precious, whether they are writing reviewer reports, or trying to find the right journal for publication,” says Mirna Kvajo, BMC Biology’s chief editor, in a statement on December 18.
Times Higher Education reports that authors may feel editors will be less likely to accept their work when they know details of its previous rejection. Yet Kvajo tells the news outlet she hopes that sharing peer reviews will help remove the stigma that accompanies rejection in academic publishing.
BMC Biology will not share reviews for papers that were rejected because of unsound science.
BMC was the first publisher to post peer reviews with reviewer names alongside the accepted articles.
Correction (January 7): The original version of this article incorrectly stated that the journal BMC Biology was the first to publish peer reviews with reviewer names alongside the accepted articles. It has been corrected to clarify that this was first done by other BMC journals. The Scientist regrets the error.