Eos, Transactions American Geophysical Union

Implementing the peer review process in AGU publications



Recently, Russell and Reiff [1984] presented a flow-diagram analysis of the AGU publication process indicating how publication delays naturally occur. Perhaps because o f space limitations, their diagram did not include some important control statements. For example, according to their diagram, all manuscripts are either published or enter an endless loop. In fact, many papers end up elsewhere: As fish wrappers, in filing cabinets, or in non-AGU publications. (Accepted papers can end up in the same places, but they have the advantage of having been published in an AGU journal.) Significantly, the number of times the paper passes through the submission-refereeing loop (NJ) is not just journal dependent. NJ also depends inversely on nD, the density of Dogma in the paper. We are concerned with the publication process also and are motivated by reports that NJ is unusually large in the case of certain distinguished colleagues, particularly when introducing new concepts or criticizing older approaches. Some suggestions are offered here to speed publication and consequently to assist in the smoother functioning of the scientific method in geophysics.