• Peer Review

    Peer Review Model

    The journal adopts a single-blind peer review model. Under this model, author identities are known to reviewers, but reviewer identities are kept confidential. The Academic Editor may decide that a direct discussion between the author and the reviewer would be helpful in some cases. If reviewers wish to reveal their identities, they should discuss this with the editorial office and any “un-blinding” will be performed by the editorial office.

    Peer Review Process

    After submission, manuscripts are subject to initial check by the managing editor and Academic Editor. Unqualified manuscripts will be rejected immediately without further peer review; and qualified manuscripts will be sent for peer review. More information about initial check can be found at Editorial Process.

    Suitable reviewers are selected based on the following:

    ★ They are independent of all the authors and their institutions;

    ★ They are experts in the same or similar research with the manuscript, and they can impartially assess the manuscript based on its originality, validity, and significance;

    ★ They have recent publications in relevant research areas;

    ★ They agree to complete peer review within the requested time.

    Reviewers complete the review by providing a constructive report within 14 days of acceptance of the invitation. Each manuscript will receive a minimum of two review reports. 

    Cases where more than two reports will be required include:

    ★ When two initial reports indicate divergent opinions;

    ★ When the Academic Editor thinks more reports are necessary to reach an informed decision.

    Manuscripts submitted by the editorial board:

    These manuscripts are handled separately by other editors, and the submitting editor is not involved in the decision-making or the review process.

    Authors Suggest Reviewers

    Authors may suggest reviewers who they believe are especially suited to review their works. This is particularly welcome when the review work requires highly specialized expertise. However, the managing editors retain the discretion as to whether to invite these suggested reviewers. Authors should provide a potential reviewers’ list including names, e-mail addresses, research areas, institutions, and ORCID (if available). Suggested reviewers

    ★ should have a recent publication record in the area of the submitted paper; 

    ★ should not have a recent publication/submission with any author; 

    ★ should not share or recently have shared an institutional affiliation with any author; 

    ★ should not be a current or recent collaborator of any author; 

    ★ should not have a close personal connection to any author; 

    ★ should not have a financial interest with the work.

    Other Participants and Their Responsibilities

    Managing Editor

    The managing editor is responsible for the first stage of initial check (including suitability of the scope, format integrity, and plagiarism check through iThenticate), seeking suitable reviewers, and coordinating the communication among authors, reviewers, and the Academic Editor.

    Academic Editor

    The Academic Editor assesses whether a manuscript is qualified for peer review, and makes the final decision to accept or reject the manuscript according to the review reports. The Academic Editor takes charge of the whole review process and evaluates the academic value of a manuscript.

    The Academic Editor is usually the Editor-in-Chief, and sometimes the Editor-in-Chief assigns another Editorial Board member or a Guest Editor as the Academic Editor for certain papers. 

    The name of Academic Editor will be listed together with the paper once it is published.

    Recognition for Reviewers

    The journal gratefully acknowledges the reviewers who dedicated their considerable time and expertise to the peer review process. And we seek to recognize the efforts of reviewers.

    ★ The journal releases the annual reviewer acknowledgement to appreciate their contribution to the high quality scientific content;

    ★ A Reviewer Recognition Certificate will be awarded after the review;

    ★ The journal encourages reviewers to register in Publons and add their review records there. Review records will be verified by the editorial office;

    ★ The journal encourages reviewers to register for an ORCID iD and link it to their Publons account. Pubons will automatically export the review history to the ORCID file.

    For more information about the peer review and whole editorial process, please refer to Peer Review Guidelines and Editorial Process.