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Peer review, Scholarly communication, Open access publishing


Scholarly publications often work to provide transparency of peer-review processes, posting policy information to their websites as suggested by the Committee on Publication Ethics’ (COPE) Principles of Transparency and Best Practice in Publishing. Yet this falls short in providing peer-review transparency. Using examples from an interview-based qualitative study, this article argues that scholarly publications should move from peer-review process transparency to a praxis of transparency in peer review. Praxis infers that values inform practices. Scholarly publications should therefore use clear communication practices in all matters of business, and bolster transparency efforts, delineating rights and responsibilities of all players in peer review. Moreover, the scholarly publishing community should offer improved and society-led referee and editor training, rather than leaving the commercial publishing industry to fill the gap which results in peer review as a service to industry’s needs – turning an efficient profit – and not the scholarly community’s needs for human-to-human discourse.


© 2019 Emily Ford.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


Article is published in Insights and can be found online at:



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