Publications, peer review, and the young scientist



As scientists and communicators, we all make our living through the expression of our ideas and the results of our scientific research. This expression takes many forms, but, most notably, published articles lie at the heart of our endeavors. I would like to present my opinions on some problems that I, as a young scientist, see in our profession.

Several years ago, two wonderful letters appeared in Geology discussing the problems of honorary coauthorship [Zen, 1988, Means, 1988]. Honorary coauthorship is a by-product of the system set up to fund scientific research. More generally, the problem is the need to publish a great number of articles in order to survive.