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Reviewer Fatigue? Why Scholars Decline to Review their Peers’ Work

  • Marijke Breuning (a1), Jeremy Backstrom (a2), Jeremy Brannon (a3), Benjamin Isaak Gross (a4) and Michael Widmeier (a5)...
Abstract

As new academic journals have emerged in political science and existing journals experience increasing submission rates, editors are concerned that scholars experience “reviewer fatigue.” Editors often assume that an overload of requests to review makes scholars less willing to perform the anonymous yet time-consuming tasks associated with reviewing manuscripts. To date, there has not been a systematic investigation of the reasons why scholars decline to review. We empirically investigated the rate at which scholars accept or decline to review, as well as the reasons they gave for declining. We found that reviewer fatigue is only one of several reasons why scholars decline to review. The evidence suggests that scholars are willing to review but that they also lead busy professional and personal lives.

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References
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Breuning, Marijke, and Sanders, Kathryn. 2007. “Gender and Journal Authorship in Eight Prestigious Political Science Journals.” PS: Political Science and Politics 40 (2): 347–51.
Chetty, Raj, Saez, Emmanuel, and Sándor, László. 2014. “What Policies Increase Prosocial Behavior? An Experiment with Referees at the Journal of Public Economics.” Journal of Economic Perspectives 28 (3): 169–88.
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PS: Political Science & Politics
  • ISSN: 1049-0965
  • EISSN: 1537-5935
  • URL: /core/journals/ps-political-science-and-politics
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