Scholars’ views on Open Peer Review – Presenting Survey Results

Scholars’ views on Open Peer Review – Presenting Survey Results

Since its inception, ScienceOpen has actively been facilitating the open peer reviewing process, not only within its network but also across the digital publishing landscape. We have continuously been focusing on ways to promote a more open scholarly environment for reviewers, and a few weeks ago, we launched a survey to help us with that.

Today, we have some results to share with all of our readers as part of Peer Review Week 2022.

Presenting the results

Our survey was broad in scope, with the goal of exploring more diverse perspectives and experiences on the advantages and disadvantages of Open Peer Review. We asked about the number of articles our respondents had reviewed, where they published them, and some more specific questions about various aspects of open peer review.

We gathered in total 79 responses from all over the world, with the majority of our respondents experienced in peer reviewing.

91% of our respondents said they had reviewed at least one article, and 25% stated that they had over 100 reviewed articles in their scholarly portfolio. 32% of our respondents have been invited to review over 100 articles, demonstrating the importance of the peer reviewing process in today’s academic environment.

62% agree that open peer review improves the quality of scholarly publications, and 1 in 2 scholars believes that open peer review is necessary for greater trust in scientific research.

The majority of the respondents find comments and reviews on preprints helpful in their scholarly works, but only 31% of them have ever openly reviewed or made public comments on a preprint.

  • 40.5% of our respondents have already peer-reviewed an article for publication in a journal that was also available as a preprint.
  • 45.5% of our respondents have published a manuscript as a preprint in an open online preprint repository before or during the peer review process.
  • 53% of our respondents have previously been invited to peer review an article that had an open peer review policy.

Views and attitudes towards Open Peer Review

Sometimes publishers are afraid that it will be difficult to get researchers to peer review if they ask them to publish their full name and peer review report. Our survey attempted to look into the issue by asking scholars about their views and attitudes toward open peer review, as well as what they would be willing to do as reviewers.

When it comes to open peer review, only half of the respondents are willing to publicly publish their name as well as their peer review report.

Peer review reports appear to be very important to our respondents, as the majority of them are willing to get their reports published. Below some results on views and attitudes:

  • 39% are willing to have their name published as a reviewer, but not the peer review report.
  • 58% are willing to have their peer review reports published, but not their names.
  • 59.5% of our respondents are willing to remain anonymous as reviewers and share the peer review report only with the authors and editors.
  • 50% agree with publishing both the peer review report and their names with their article.
Which services do you use regularly for Open Peer Review?

The majority of our respondents are aware of the platforms used for open peer review, including ScienceOpen, Publons, F1000, and PubPeer. Some of our respondents use Publons (23.5%), ScienceOpen (9.8%), and F1000 (7.8%) on a regular basis.

When asked about different platforms for open peer review, more than 70% of respondents mentioned ScienceOpen.

We also asked about features that an open peer review platform should have, in order for it to be successful in attracting reviewers, and the results are:

  • Crossref DOIs for citation and tracking – 82.4%
  • A link between preprint and published article – 81%
  • Integration with ORCID – 77%
  • Editor mediation – 47.3%

At ScienceOpen we have been developing infrastructure for open peer review for nearly 10 years because we believe that it increases transparency and trust in science. The thing I find most encouraging about this survey is that 53% of the respondents have been invited to review for a journal with an open peer review policy and 50% would willing to make both their name and their report public. Open peer review is becoming increasingly one of the standard options for publishers in organizing their peer review workflows. I hope to see those numbers increase even more in the next years as the review of preprints becomes more prevalent

Stephanie Dawson, CEO of ScienceOpen

Reviewing made easy!

ScienceOpen is constantly keeping track of the needs that emerge from open publishing processes, as well as the changes imposed by the rapidly changing digital publishing landscape. Over the years we have continued to explore open peer review tools and workflows to support preprint management, post-publication review, and the creation of open access journals based on open peer review.

We recently joined the #PublishYourReviews initiative, and we encourage all our users to sign the pledge on Open Peer Review. On this blog, you can learn more about the initiative and Open reviews on ScienceOpen.

Visit the section Review on ScienceOpen, where you can learn more about all the guidelines and requirements for reviewing on our platform. Take a look and don’t hesitate to contact our team if you have any further questions.

1 thought on “Scholars’ views on Open Peer Review – Presenting Survey Results”

  1. Very interesting questionnaire, to run once in a while to assess the evolution of the trend towards more open peer reviewing, especially in view of supporting the reform in research assessment taking place in the coming years.

    About the results on the features of the platforms, I wonder whether editors really meditate;-)

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