Some even recommend abolishing the traditional process used by science journal editors to evaluate submitted manuscripts

During the past several years, the practice of peer review of article submissions--accepted unquestioningly by some authors--has come under increasingly harsh scrutiny by others. Many of these authors--joined, in some cases, by the editors of the very publications they are criticizing--are demanding change: Some are suggesting that reviewers' identities be revealed to the author; some, indeed, want to see the traditional peer-review system abolished altogether.

Advocates of such changes fear that reviewers either are competitors of the authors whose research they are critiquing--and thus may have a vested interest in delaying the publication of their rivals' work--or are immersed in a subdiscipline at such a distance from the papers they are ostensibly reviewing that they may know nothing about the subject. Some also worry that, because publishing is essentially a buyers' market, there is...

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