Peer Review Process

Peer Review Statement

The articles published in this journal go through a rigorous (double-blind) peer review process. After an initial review by the editor, each article is evaluated by two reviewers.

Anonymity

Reviewers are anonymous by default. During the review process, reviewers’ identities are not revealed to authors or to other reviewers unless reviewers themselves reveal their identities by signing their names at the end of their comments. However, reviewers are given credit by naming them on the title page of the published article unless they explicitly ask for staying anonymous.

The Section Editor is not anonymous to authors and reviewers. The Section Editor’s and Editor-in-Chiefs names are indicated on the title page of the published article.

Decision process

The Editor-in-Chief and the Section Editor(s) together make a decision based on the reviewers' comments.

Conflicting reviews

If reviewers appear to disagree fundamentally, the editors may try to invite an additional reviewer; another approach could be to share all the reviews with each of the reviewers to get additional comments that may help the editors to make a decision. It needs to be recognised that decisions are not necessarily made according to majority rule. Instead, the editors evaluate the recommendations and comments of the reviewers alongside comments by the authors and material that may not have been made available to those reviewers.

Notifying reviewers of decisions

Reviewers’ comments along with the decision letter are sent to all reviewers of the respective manuscript. If reviewers have revealed their identities, this information will be forwarded to other reviewers.

Reviewers who may have offered an opinion different from the final decision should not feel that their recommendation was not adequately considered or underappreciated. Experts often disagree, and it is the job of the editorial team to make a decision.Difference of opinion lies in the nature of things and should be seen as stimulation for scientific achievement.

Revisions and appeals

When a paper has been revised in response to the review- or when authors appeal against a decision, we may ask reviewers to provide additional comments in order to allow authors a fair hearing.