Guide for Reviewers
Purpose of Peer Review
The editors and publisher appreciate all the determined efforts and expertise that volunteer reviewers contribute to the evaluation process, otherwise it would be impossible to keep the journal growing.
Peer review is a vital element of high-quality publication, and it has come to the fore in the scientific process.
Peer Review includes two prime functions:
It is worthwhile to mention that the editor may not be aware of your specialty intimately, and may only be knowledgeable about your work in a broader context. Only accept an invitation if you are competent to review the article.
There are some key factors to be considered:
Conducting the Review
Reviewing of articles should be conducted confidentially, i.e., the article you have been invited to review should not be revealed to a third party. However, if you wish to elicit an opinion from colleagues or students regarding the manuscript, you should inform the editor in advance. Editors welcome additional comments, but whoever else is involved will also need to keep the review process confidential. Although journal practices vary, most journals do not share the identity of the reviewer with the author. To help us protect your identity, please do not reveal your name within the text of your review.
You should not attempt to contact the author. Be aware when you submit your review that any recommendations you make will contribute to the final decision made by the editor.
Reviewers would be expected to evaluate submissions according to the following:
Is the article sufficiently novel and interesting to warrant publication? Does it add to the canon of knowledge? Does the article adhere to the journal's standards? Is the research question an important one? In order to determine its originality and appropriateness for the journal, it might be helpful to think of the research in terms of what percentile it is in? Is it in the top 25% of papers in this field (resource recovery and related subjects)? You might wish to do a quick literature search using tools such as Scopus to see if there are any reviews of the area. If the research has been covered previously, pass on references of those works to the editor.
Is the article clearly laid out? Are all the key elements (where relevant) present: abstract, introduction, experimental, results and discussion, and conclusions? Consider each element in turn:
- Previous Research
If the article builds upon previous research, does it reference that work appropriately? Are there any important works that have been omitted? Are the references accurate?
- Ethical Issues
Communicating Your Report to the Editor
Once you have completed your evaluation of the article the next step is to write up your report. As a courtesy, let the editor know if it looks like you might miss your deadline.
It would be helpful to provide a quick summary of the article at the beginning of your report. This serves the dual purpose of reminding the editor of the details of the report and also reassuring the author and editor that you have understood the article.
The report should contain the key elements of your review, addressing the points outlined in the preceding section. Commentary should be courteous and constructive, and should not include any personal remarks or personal details including your name.
Providing insight into any deficiencies is important. You should explain and support your judgment so that both editors and authors are able to fully understand the reasoning behind your comments. You should indicate whether your comments are your own opinion or are reflected by the data.
When you make a recommendation regarding an article, it is worth considering the categories the editor most likely uses for classifying the article.