Peer review week 2017

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Although peer review is not universally liked or practiced in scholarly venues, it is a tradition widely recognized as integral to the integrity of scholarly publication. A celebration of peer review began in 2015 with a small number of people and organizations and has expanded since that inaugural event. For Peer Review Week 2016, which occurred September 19th to 25th, the theme was Recognition for Review; this year, the theme is Transparency and the dates are September 11th–17th. The groups supporting the event now numbers 28 and the activities and resources have commensurately expanded. The website has a useful resource page (, a twitter hashtag (#PeerRevWk17) and promotional material available for everyone. For academics teaching research or professional development courses, these resources should be useful to graduate students.
As the editor of this journal I have written many times about peer review. I have seen some improvement in the quality of peer reviews I receive, but I continue to see problems with the peer review process. A significant problem is a failure of reviewers to follow through on their commitments to complete a review; another is a lack of substantive comments in a review. Both actions create long delays for authors and increase the chances that errors in the science get through the reviewing process. Novice reviewers need guidance and mentoring in how to do a peer review. This is a learned skill and those who have learned it do a great service to the profession by teaching and mentoring the next generation. In addition to the peer review week resources above, JAANP has published a general guide to peer review (Pierson, 2015), an application of a checklist to a systematic review (Pierson, 2016b), and an editorial on recognition of peer reviewers (Pierson, 2016a). For those who want to contribute to the peer review process, there are many opportunities and resources.
I close with a plea for my colleagues to pay attention to Peer Review Week 2017 and celebrate it by checking some of the resources mentioned in this editorial. For those who wish to participate as peer reviewers for JAANP, contact the editorial office ( with a request to become a reviewer. Reviewers are assigned by the editor based on the type of article and the expertise of the reviewer. When asked to review, please respond promptly (it is fine to decline a review and there will be a link in the invitation letter to do that), and complete the assignment within the agreed time. We greatly appreciate our reviewers and hope to continue our relationship as the journal transitions to a new publisher in January 2018. This transition may require reviewers to update their profiles on the new submission and review platform. More information on that will be announced shortly.
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