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

From: Steve Hitchcock <sh94r_at_ECS.SOTON.AC.UK>
Date: Fri, 21 Dec 2001 12:15:45 +0000

At 17:51 20/12/01 -0500, Arthur Smith wrote:
> > 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

Arthur, In this context, what are your comments on the journals
Advances in Theoretical and Mathematical Physics (ATMP) and JHEP?

ATMP appears to be a genuine 'overlay' on arXiv, pointing to papers it has
peer reviewed but which are stored on arXiv. JHEP allows submissions via
arXiv but after peer review papers are stored on its site rather than
arXiv. Thus it stops short of a full version overlay, instead relying on
"complete automation of the editorial work that is carried out by means of
a software robot" to minimize costs and ensure free and open access to
refereed papers". In both cases the emphasis is on peer review with much
scaled-down editorial processing.

I know you commented on this in your 'overlay' paper two years ago.
According to Fosmire and Yu (2000), "ATMP is a bona fide high impact
journal". Has anything changed?

Steve Hitchcock
Open Citation (OpCit) Project <>
IAM Research Group, Department of Electronics and Computer Science
University of Southampton SO17 1BJ, UK
Tel: +44 (0)23 8059 3256 Fax: +44 (0)23 8059 2865
Received on Fri Dec 21 2001 - 13:07:01 GMT

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