Where to now for health-related journal peer review?

23 June 2014

Peer review of health-related manuscripts has enormous power in determining what is published in health-related journals, and what makes its way into health policy and clinical practice. However, peer review is at times ethically problematic and not always effective in achieving its goals. Over the past 25 years, a large number of debates about, and studies of, the peer review process has been published. Despite this, there is limited agreement about the strengths and weaknesses of peer review, and limited evidence about whether peer review achieves its goals and whether interventions to improve it have been successful. The authors argue that this state of affairs is not acceptable and that there is a need to systematise efforts to understand and improve the review process.