Submitting unpublished web-posted papers to RAE

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Wed, 15 Mar 2006 13:13:08 -0500

Last pass and then I withdraw from this much-repeating topic: Has any
of you actually tried to submit an unrefereed, unpublished paper,
posted on the web, for one (or more) of your four RAE submissions? How
did your department and your university feel about it? And what RAE
rank did they get?

I've done RAE submissions (from a 5* department) and we aimed at
articles published in peer-reviewed journals (and peer-reviewed
conference proceedings); we even discouraged book-chapters. Those who
did not have the requisite publications were simply not submitted as
among our active researchers. An earlier department I was in did the
same. Are we anomalous, or are the discussants on this thread talking
about empty formalities ("outputs") while missing substance and


PS before it starts: I know there are discipline differences, and I am
talking only about journal-based disciplines. I know that peer review
is not perfect, but this is not about perfecting peer review; I know
there is the rare unpublished masterpiece, but we are not talking about
rare exceptions but everyday bread. And last of all, this is a
repositories list, talking about what can and should be deposited in
IRs, how, and why. RAE is not one of the reasons for or against
depositing unrefereed, unpublished papers; nor is OA (though there are
other reasons for doing it).

On 06-03-15, at 12:17, Andy Powell wrote:

> As far as I can tell (though I confess that I haven't read it thru
> thoroughly), the RAE "Guidance on submissions" document at
> (June 2005) tends to talk in terms of 'outputs' (rather than
> publications). It doesn't use the word 'unpublished' anywhere. It
> does use the words 'published' and 'publication' but these appear to
> be meant in the looser sense that John indicates below (i.e. made
> available), e.g. as used in "internet publication"?
> Oddly(?) the document also doesn't seem to talk explicitly about 'peer
> review' except in the context of calculating research income.
> So it's not clear to me that it is safe to assume that the RAE uses
> 'published' (and 'publication') to mean 'peer reviewed' and
> 'unpublished' to mean 'non-peer reviwed'?
> Andy
> --
> Head of Development, Eduserv Foundation
> +44 (0)1225 474319
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Repositories discussion list
>> [mailto:JISC-REPOSITORIES_at_JISCMAIL.AC.UK] On Behalf Of Stevan Harnad
>> Sent: 15 March 2006 15:12
>> Subject: Re: Publication? was: Re: Generic Rationale and
>> Model for University Open Access Mandate
>> I don't disagree with anything John writes below:
>> (1) Yes, web-posted, unpublished papers are being read, used, cited
>> -- and sometimes they are even good!
>> (2) They can and should and are being deposited in IRs too,
>> in addition to the primary OA target: refereed journal articles.
>> (3) No, neither the RAE nor tenure/promotion committees nor
>> journals regard this unpublished papers as published papers.
>> They can and should be and are being listed in CVs and cited
>> as unpublished papers.
>> Where's the point of disagreement?
>> If unrefereed, unpublished papers deposited in IRs are to be
>> called some sort of publication at all, then that sort of
>> publication already has a name: Vanity Press (or
>> Self-Publication). (I prefer "preprint" or "ms. in prep",
>> because it has a more hopeful ring to it, heralding things to
>> come, like, maybe, publication!)
>> Chrs, Stevan
>> On 15-Mar-06, at 9:46 AM, J.W.T.Smith wrote:
>>> Stevan, et al,
>>> No amount of pontificating or dogmatic definition tweaking
>> is going to
>>> put this genie back in the bottle. Any document made publicly
>>> available is 'published' by any reasonable definition of
>> the word. To
>>> insist that it is not really published until it has been through a
>>> refereeing stage and appeared in an acknowledged journal is
>>> rearranging the deckchairs after the Titanic has sunk. Many
>>> respectable research papers are appearing (ie, being
>> published), being
>>> read and cited (and the citations are being tracked by search
>>> services) before any peer review or even if no peer review
>> is planned.
>>> IRs are part of a new publishing system whether their original
>>> proponents want them to be or not.
>>> How many IRs contain only the type of material specified by
>> Stevan?
>>> We are
>>> in the planning stage for our IR and it will be limited to research
>>> outputs but it will certainly not be limited to only
>> refereed material
>>> which has been (or is to be) published in a recognised journal.
>>> Regards,
>>> John Smith,
>>> University of Kent.
>>> On Wed, 15 Mar 2006, Stevan Harnad wrote:
>>>> On Wed, 15 Mar 2006, Wolfgang Greller wrote:
>>>>> Can anyone tell me whether articles published in an institutional
>>>>> e-print repository count as publication in UK RAE terms?
>>>> Absolutely not! "Publication" in the UK RAE and in every other
>>>> sensible venue, means (in the case of research articles)
>> publication
>>>> in a reputable peer-reviewed journal, not vanity self-publication.
>>>> Nor is OA self-archiving self-publication. It is
>> access-provision --
>>>> providing supplementary access to an already-published article, in
>>>> order to maximise its usage and impact, not in order to generate a
>>>> spurious entry under "Publications" in one's CV. The place
>> in one's
>>>> CV for unpublished papers is, as always, "Unpublished Papers."
>>>> Stevan Harnad
>>>> American Scientist Open Access Forum
>>>> Access-Forum.html
>>>> Chaire de recherche du Canada Professor of Cognitive
>>>> Science
>>>> Ctr. de neuroscience de la cognition Dpt. Electronics &
>>>> Computer Science
>>>> Université du Québec à Montréal University of Southampton
>>>> Montréal, Québec Highfield, Southampton
>>>> Canada H3C 3P8 SO17 1BJ United Kingdom
>>>> ~harnad/
Received on Thu Mar 16 2006 - 09:55:15 GMT

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Fri Dec 10 2010 - 19:48:16 GMT