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<b>Complex Systems/CSAAW Special Seminar</b><br><i>Accelerating the Pace of Discovery By Changing the Peer Review Algorithm</i>

Thursday, April 22, 2010
12:00 AM
335 West Hall

Speaker: Stefano Allesina, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (University of Chicago)

Stefano Allesina will be speaking about his paper.

The peer review system for journals and grant proposals is under severe strain. Many possible corrections to the system have been proposed, but experiments that could determine which measures are the most effective are difficult to perform. Surprisingly, few attempts have been made to model peer review. Here I propose a framework in which alternatives to the current peer review system for journals can be studied quantitatively using agent-based modeling. I use the framework to implement three possible peer-review systems. The first is the classic peer review that is adopted by most journals, the second is a modification that includes editorial rejection and the third is a more radical departure in which journals bid on manuscripts. Results show how, all other things being equal, these alternatives produce very different results in terms of speed of publication, quality control, effort required for reviewers and editors and authors' impact. Results show that alternatives can be much more efficient than the current method for handling submissions.