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Open Peer Review

Learn more about the innovative Open Research Europe publication model

Think you know peer review? Think again!

At Open Research Europe, we do things differently. Traditional peer review typically follows a single- or double-blinded process, allowing journal editors and reviewers to act as curators of knowledge, deciding what research is published where.  

We are proud to offer a fully open and transparent post-publication peer review process. Our model is centered around transparency and innovation, allowing peer review to become a constructive and collaborative conversation within the research community.  

Keep reading to find out everything you need to know as an Open Research Europe author, including how our model works, your role in the peer review process, and the benefits of open peer review for you.

How the open peer review process works

The fundamentals of post-publication peer review  at Open Research Europe

At Open Research Europe, our peer review process is formal, invited, and open - so reports are published alongside the article, with reviewer names and affiliations.

Peer review takes place after the article has been published openly on the platform, so your research can be read and cited while being assessed by expert reviewers.

Reviewers assess the quality and validity of the research, not the novelty or perceived interest. We also welcome null and negative studies, and they will not be reviewed any differently. 

View our detailed infographic which takes you through every step of our open, post-publication peer review process, so you know what to expect at every stage.

What does 'pass peer review' mean?

Awaiting peer review: All articles are labelled with this immediately upon publication. As soon as a report is published, this is updated to reflect its new approval status.

Approved: The reviewer has asked for a few small changes, or no changes at all.

Approved with reservations: The reviewer believes the article has academic merit, but requires a number of small changes, or significant revisions.

Not approved: The reviewer considers the article to have fundamental flaws and be of low quality. The article is still published on Open Research Europe, and authors are strongly encouraged to publish an updated version which addresses specific concerns raised by the reviewer.

An article passes peer review with two Approved ratings, or one Approved and two Approved with reservations, and will be included in PubMed, Scopus, and other major indexes, along with its review reports.

What gets peer reviewed?

Open Research Europe publishes a variety of research outputs, which are all peer-reviewed. It's important to note that we don't publish Posters, Slides, and Documents. All other article types (such as Research Articles, Software Tool Articles, and Data Notes) undergo the same open, post-publication peer review process explained here.

Guidance for peer reviewers

Are you a peer reviewer? Check out our resources and guidance for peer reviewers, created to help you understand everything you need to know about our open model and what your role is throughout the process.
Learn more

Finding peer reviewers

Learn how to choose the right experts to review your research

Tips and tricks: how to find peer reviewers

Need some more help with finding reviewers? Download our essential guidance on how you can find and suggest suitable reviewers for your research.
Download now

Our peer review process is a collaboration between the author and the Open Research Europe Editorial team.

Before publication, you must suggest at least five potential reviewers who meet our basic criteria (and must continue to suggest names until at least two peer review reports have been published). If you struggle to find reviewers for your research, our Editorial team are there to support you. With our top tips, finding peer reviewers is straightforward!

  1. Use your knowledge of the field to identify possible reviewers at prominent institutions
  2. Try the Reviewer Finder Tool we provide to generate a list of potential reviewers
  3. Look at your references – authors of cited papers could be well-placed to review for you
  4. Explore academic databases like PubMed and Web of Science for recent articles with relevant keywords

Diversity in peer review

Diversity amongst your suggested peer reviewers is important. We advise you to consider choosing reviewers from different institutions, geographies and to ensure that there is a good gender balance. 

If the five names you provide aren’t diverse enough, we might ask you for more suggestions of potential reviewers.

Why choose open peer review?

Learn about the  benefits of our open model for researchers

At Open Research Europe, we believe that transparency in the peer review process is crucial for quality and accountability, which makes it easier to know if research can be trusted.

Here's how our innovative model benefits researchers:

  • Enable conversation within the research community with fully transparent peer review
  • Reduce the possibility of bias, as everything is openly available to all
  • Improve the quality of peer review
  • Let everyone benefit and learn from reading reviewer feedback
  • Empower authors to lead the process by suggesting reviewers themselves
  • Accelerate the pace of discovery by publishing research before it undergoes peer review

Support with open peer review

Do you have questions about our model? Get in touch with our team, apply to become a reviewer or check out our useful resources below 

Email the team

Our in-house team are here to ensure that all articles on Open Research Europe undergo the same rigorous process. Want to get in touch? Contact the team today!
Email the team

Finding reviewers

A short summary of our open peer review model, how our editorial team support you throughout the process, along with tips and tricks to find article reviewers.
Read now

Become a reviewer

Please fill out and send this form to our editorial team along with a copy of your CV at editorial@open-research-europe.ec.europa.eu to apply now.
Apply now

Read our blog

Our Senior Editorial Assistant gives us a brief introduction to the open peer review process and discusses the reviewer checks that allow this model to work.
Read now

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