Re: The True Cost of the Essentials (Implementing Peer Review)

From: Arthur Smith <apsmith_at_APS.ORG>
Date: Thu, 20 Dec 2001 17:51:37 -0500

Stevan Harnad wrote:
> [concerning my speculations on what we would do if our journals no longer
> had any control over "presentation"...]
> It's my opinion that in this case Arthur's opinion does not
> represent the APS (Marty?)...

Probably there are many different opinions here - it's not so much what
I or Marty say but what the society (governed by members and various
committees and boards) would actually do that's my question. One piece
of evidence I might be wrong is the "virtual journals" we've sponsored:

but note that the "peer review" that goes into those is selection by one
or a small number of editors, with no consulting of outside reviewers -
of course the links are to articles in existing peer-reviewed journals
where that review process has already been done.

> It think that if the Physics
> community should ever decide that all it wants/needs is peer
> review, APS will then faithfully provide that, rather than
> ceding the titles...

peer review is a pretty thankless task, for editors and referees alike.
If the product of that review becomes less "meaningful" I just don't see
how it will be sustained. Which is why it's tempting to look at new ways
of doing the peer review at the same time.

But back to my speculation on what the society would do: if all the
information were already available for free online in an acceptable,
readable, long-term archival format, with full searching capabilities,
etc. why would we want to simply be some sort of contractor to
universities in assessment of their faculty? Better a commercial company
takes on that task, and leave us to planning meetings and lobbying the

Received on Fri Dec 21 2001 - 01:35:48 GMT

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