PubCreds and the "burden" of peer review Sep 15. 2010 | Comments (0)
The Scholarly Kitchen's David Crotty has an excellent post on the "burden" of peer review. While scientists increasingly seem to find pre-publication peer review an overwhelming burden, it's not clear that this feeling is entirely justified. By many measures, pre-publication peer review is a terrific bargain for science as a whole, and for individual scientists. And the alternative idea of post-publication review (let's throw everything onto the web and let "the crowd" sort it out) doesn't hold up well under scrutiny.
I agree wholeheartedly with David's points. But he doesn't actually suggest any ways to tweak the existing system so as to address the real (as opposed to merely perceived) burdens imposed by that system. Real burdens do actually arise when too many manuscripts are chasing too few willing referees.
Hmm...if only there were a way to ensure that the availability of willing reviewers matched the number of manuscripts submitted...