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ResourcesResearch IntegrityThe Rise of Peer Review: Melinda Baldwin on the History of Refereeing at Scientific Journals and Funding Bodies – Scholarly Kitchen (Robert Harington | September 2018)

Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)

The Rise of Peer Review: Melinda Baldwin on the History of Refereeing at Scientific Journals and Funding Bodies – Scholarly Kitchen (Robert Harington | September 2018)

Published/Released on September 26, 2018 | Posted by Admin on October 17, 2018 / , , , , , ,
 


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I  was recently given the opportunity to read a fascinating paper by Melinda Baldwin, (Books Editor at Physics Today magazine, published by the American Institute of Physics), entitled “Scientific Autonomy, Public Accountability, and the Rise of “Peer Review” in the Cold War United States” (Isis, volume 109, number 3, September 2018). Melinda is an accomplished historian of science, with a special emphasis on the cultural and intellectual history of science and scientific communication. Not only is her writing infectiously entertaining, the story itself is new, or at least it is new to me. It turns out that peer reviewing in scientific journals is a relatively recent construct, first emerging in the nineteenth century and not seen as a central part of science until the late twentieth century.

A great piece reflecting on the history of peer review that nicely contextualises current frustrations and future directions. A worthy inclusion in ‘further reading’ lists when speaking about peer review.

Melinda paints a picture of constant change in peer review, which perhaps provides a lesson for us all. Maybe this should be obvious, but there is no status quo in academic publishing, and while we may feel our moment is more important than those that have gone before, or those ahead of us, expectations and models are fluid, be you author, reviewer, publisher, institution, or funder.
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In this interview I ask Melinda to talk about her article, and provide some more personal views on peer review topics of the moment.
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Read the rest of this discussion piece



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