Re: ClinMed NetPrints

From: Christopher D. Green <christo_at_YORKU.CA>
Date: Wed, 5 Apr 2000 09:37:44 -0400

"ransdell, joseph m." wrote:

> It would hardly be surprising if what the gatekeepers do not permit to
> pass through the public gates does not become generally accepted, if the
> field is one in which the gatekeepers are efficient. What is unknown
> obviously cannot become commonly accepted. The question, then, is
> whether scholarly consensus is to be limited to what is found possibly
> acceptable by the gatekeepers, in the form of editors and their
> consultants. Gatekeepers tend to think so, needless to say, though
> dissenters can occasionally be found. In any case, others may smell
> something amiss in these pretensions.

Although it is well-known among psychologists (it may not be so well-known
among others), there was actually an empirical study of the reliability of
peer review published in Behavioral & Brain Science in 1982. The system did
not come off very well. To quote the abstract:

"12 research articles were resubmitted to the journals that had published
them 18-32 mo previously, with ficticious names and institutions substituted
for the original ones. Only 3 of the resubmissions were detected, and 8 of
the remaining articles were rejected--primarily for "serious methodological
flaws." Authoreviewer accountability is discussed, and recommendations for
improving the peer review system are presented. Commentary on this article
is provided by 56 authors along with the original authors'."

Peters, Douglas P. & Ceci, Stephen J. (1982). Peer-review practices of
psychological journals: The fate of published articles, submitted again.
Behavioral & Brain Sciences. 1982 Jun Vol 5(2) 187-255

Christopher D. Green
Department of Psychology
York University
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3
phone:  (416) 736-5115 ext. 66164
fax:    (416) 736-5814
Received on Mon Jan 24 2000 - 19:17:43 GMT

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