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Re: Costs of peer-review (Was: May issue of the SPARC Open Access =

X-edited-by: liblicen@pantheon.yale.edu
Date: Fri,  7 May 2010 22:55:27 EDT
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I agree that your costs are about spot on. Most of the online=20
submission systems make a charge per manuscript (regardless of=20
whether it is accepted/published or not) of about USD20, then=20
there is the staff time to process the article (ensure that=20
submitted data are correct, contact/chase reviewers, run reports,=20
etc.)(it may sound ephemeral but the costs of editorial staff can=20
be substantial).

And this ignores the setup cost of establishing an editorial=20
system (to get an online submission system configured and set up=20
will cost upward of USD100,000.

Finally, most journals pay their editors some form of honorarium=20
which would be additional to these costs.

(There are open source submission systems available - notably OJS=20
- but the saving in cost to the external commercial developer is=20
largely offset by the internal costs of developing and=20
maintaining the system.) Pippa

Pippa Smart
Research Communication and Publishing Consultant
PSP Consulting
email: pippa.smart@gmail.com
Web: www.pspconsulting.org

On 7 May 2010 02:05, Rich Dodenhoff <rdodenhoff@aspet.org> wrote:

> The notion that peer review is free or low cost is based on=20
> misinformation. =A0In STM publishing, at least, editors are=20
> normally paid a stipend or honorarium that can range from=20
> thousands to tens of thousands of dollars (it can be even=20
> higher for clinical journals). =A0In some cases, the editor's=20
> institution gets the money, but it still has to be paid by the=20
> publisher.
> Online manuscript submission and peer-review systems are not=20
> cheap. =A0Editors, editorial boards, and reviewers expect more=20
> than just getting a PDF via email. =A0They want to track=20
> turnaround times, reviewer performance, and other statistics=20
> related to the process. =A0Authors expect the ability to track=20
> submissions from anywhere. =A0Online systems may be less=20
> expensive to run than sending paper manuscripts back and forth=20
> and tracking them with manual data entry, but the systems are=20
> far from low cost.
> It takes paid staff to run the process, so you have to add=20
> their salaries, rent, and overhead. Even if the work is done by=20
> the editor's administrative assistant, the journal normally=20
> pays for that person's time.
> We publish four journals that have "volunteer" editors and=20
> editorial boards. =A0It's a rather bare-bones operation with=20
> minimal staff who handled 2,508 submissions in 2009. =A0Peer=20
> review for those journals for 2009 cost about $700,000.
> Richard Dodenhoff
> Journals Director
> American Society for Pharmacology
> =A0& Experimental Therapeutics
> 9650 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, MD 20814
> www.aspet.org