How to launch a transformative and sustainable forum for publication and scholarly critiques of research in the life sciences?

By Harinder Singh Director, Division of Immunobiology and the Center for Systems Immunology Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center This perspective is a result of the various insightful commentaries that have been posted on the ASAPbio site in the context of the HHMI/Wellcome/ASAPbio meeting on “Transparency, Recognition and Innovation in Peer Review in the Life Sciences.” […]

Preprint QC

By Bernd Pulverer, EMBO As preprint posting takes hold in the biosciences community, we need both quality control and curation to ensure we share results in a reproducible and discoverable manner.

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Preprint Journal Clubs: building a community of PREreviewers


By Samantha Hindle and Daniela Saderi, PREreview The image above (DOI)  is CC-BY 4.0 licensed and is available for download on Figshare.

Preprints are freely available scientific manuscripts that have not yet undergone editorial peer review. They provide data and knowledge that is current, accessible by all, and at a stage where community peer review can contribute to scientific progression. Rather than restricting feedback to two or three journal-selected reviewers, preprints can be read and evaluated by a diverse population of interested scientists at different career stages. Theoretically, the advantages of opening up scientific evaluation to a larger pool of scientists should be straightforward: the more reviewers, the fewer mistakes – or to quote Linus’ Law, “Given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow.” Practically speaking, this can be more complicated as scientists have limited free time, are not well-incentivized for their reviewing activities, and some may argue that “too many cooks spoil the broth.”

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F1000: our experiences with preprints followed by formal post-publication peer review

By Rebecca Lawrence & Vitek Tracz, F1000, rebecca.lawrence@f1000.com We have been successfully running a service (which we call platforms, to distinguish from traditional research journals), for over 5 years at F1000 that is essentially a preprint coupled with formal, invited (i.e. not crowd-sourced) post publication peer review. We have consequently amassed significant experience of running […]

APPRAISE (A Post-Publication Review and Assessment In Science Experiment)

By Michael B. Eisen Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor of Molecular and Cell Biology, UC Berkeley mbeisen@gmail.com, @mbeisen With the rapid growth of bioRxiv, biomedical research is entering a new era in which papers describing our ideas, experiments, data and discoveries are made available to our colleagues and the public without having undergone peer […]

Opening up peer review

By Dr. Stuart Taylor, Publishing Director, The Royal Society, London, UK Peer review has been a key part of the research communication system for centuries. Scientists absolutely depend on a research literature that is as reliable, reproducible and trustworthy as possible in order to inform their future work and to help explain other findings. Subjecting […]

Hypercompetition and journal peer review

By Chris Pickett Journal peer review is a critical part of vetting the integrity of the literature, and the research community should do more to value this exercise. Biomedical research is in a period of hypercompetition, and the pressures of hypercompetition force scientists to focus on metrics that define success in the current environment—funding, publications […]

Peer Feedback

By Ron Vale, Tony Hyman, and Jessica Polka Summary We propose the creation of a scientist-driven, journal-agnostic peer review service that produces an “Evaluated Preprint” and facilitates subsequent publication in a journal. Introduction Scientists have a love-hate relationship with peer review. Sadly, this relationship has been drifting towards the latter over time. Much of the […]

Six essential reads on peer review

In preparation for our meeting on Transparency, Recognition, and Innovation in Peer Review in the Life Sciences on February 7-9 at HHMI Headquarters, we’ve collected some recent (and not-so-recent) literature on journal peer review. A full annotated bibliography can be found at the bottom of this post, and we invite any additions via comments. To […]

Should reviewers be expected to review supporting datasets and code?

by John Helliwell, Emeritus Professor of Chemistry University of Manchester and DSc Physics University of York (@HelliwellJohn) Introduction For the meeting entitled “Transparency, Reward, and Innovation in Peer Review in the Life Sciences” to be held on Feb. 7-9, 2018 at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Chevy Chase, Maryland (http://asapbio.org/peer-review) I have been asked by […]

Should scientists receive credit for peer review?

by Stephen Curry, Professor of Structural Biology, Imperial College (@Stephen_Curry) As the song goes – and I have in mind the Beatles’ 1963 cover version of Money (that’s all I want) – “the best things in life are free.” But is peer review one of them? The freely given service that many scientists provide as validation […]

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