Care to Referee More?


Some members of our profession are referee superstars, being asked multiple times a week to referee papers for journals (and often saying ‘yes’), while others are well-qualified but unnoticed, and are almost never asked to referee. The result is that some philosophers have become unfairly overburdened, journal editors have been having increased difficulty finding referees in a timely fashion, desk rejections have gone up, and authors continue to wait and wait and wait. 

One thing that might be helpful is to get some more prospective referees on the radar of busy editors. So, if you feel like you are not asked often enough to referee papers, enter your name and areas of specialization in a comment below (no need to include contact information if it is easy to find online elsewhere).

What is “often enough”? For the purposes of this post, we’ll leave that up to those deciding whether to add their names.

(Adding your name is not tantamount to saying ‘yes’ to any refereeing request that comes your way, of course.)

Laurie Frick, "Sleeping in Pink" (detail)

Laurie Frick, “Sleeping in Pink” (detail)

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Dale Miller
5 years ago

*Crickets* 🙂Report

Bill Wringe
Bill Wringe
Reply to  Dale Miller
5 years ago

That’s a fairly narrow specialization, though…would you consider other areas within the philosophy of entomology?Report

some person or other
some person or other
5 years ago

Is this a joke? I really can’t tell.Report

upstate
upstate
Reply to  Justin Weinberg
5 years ago

So, I get that. And I think I’m on board with what you’re trying to do. One issue is that those who believe they could be doing more reviewing might be hesitant to publically (or even privately) declare their desire to review. I feel a little dirty saying “Hey! I want to have more influence over what gets published!” But maybe I shouldn’t project my own discomfort onto everyone else.Report

Dale Miller
Reply to  Justin Weinberg
5 years ago

As a new editor, I do appreciate the thought. It seems to me that one thing that would help is a change in the way that the ScholarOne website works. Right now, as far as I can tell, when I look for people with an interest in topic X, I only see people who have had some contact with Utilitas previously. If you have an interest in X, and you’ve already indicated this in the profiles that you have with multiple other journals but have no profile with Utilitas, then you’re not going to come up in my search. If I could do a search that would include the profiles of other journals, that would help me cast a much wider net. Maybe this capability is there and I just haven’t found it yet.Report

Matt
Reply to  Dale Miller
5 years ago

Even without the feature mentioned by David Chalmers below being functional yet, I’d think that searching Phil Papers would be a good idea here. It has a fairly good search system that would let you find people who have published on pretty much any topic you’re interested in.Report

Jordan Dodd
Jordan Dodd
5 years ago

Happy to help. AOS: PhilMindReport

Bill Wringe
Bill Wringe
5 years ago

Well after 15 years in the profession, I’ve probably sent out more papers than I’ve reviewed. So I’m in. (Areas: punishment, collective obligation and collective action, emotion, folk psychology/theory of theory of mind.)Report

david chalmers
5 years ago

philpapers will shortly be releasing a new service (philpeople, a database of philosophers), which will include special functionality for editors to search for referees in a certain area and for philosophers to declare themselves (in a way accessible only to editors) able and willing to referee papers in certain areas.Report

GS
GS
5 years ago

Are grad students qualified to be referees? I would love to do so in my area if I could – the more exposure and experience the better (or so I assume). That said, I assume the answer to my question is a big fat “No.”Report

Porpoise
Porpoise
Reply to  GS
5 years ago

In my experienced, if you’ve published in the area, being a grad student won’t deter people from asking.Report

Ben
Ben
Reply to  GS
5 years ago

Yes, plenty of grad students referee. If you send a paper to a journal, you’re not unlikely to be asked to referee for it in the future (even if the journal rejected your paper!). Also, plenty of referees are completely unqualified, as anyone who’s ever received referee reports can tell you.Report

Emerson Doyle
Emerson Doyle
5 years ago

Also happy to help. AOS: History of Analytic (esp. Logical Empiricism) and Phil Math.Report

Suzy Killmister
Suzy Killmister
5 years ago

I could also be doing more. Areas of particular interest: autonomy/action theory; human rights; group rights; dignityReport

Kristopher
Kristopher
5 years ago

Sure. AOS: Early Modern, esp. Descartes.Report

Cher
Cher
Reply to  Kristopher
5 years ago

I love it.Report

Sam Baron
Sam Baron
5 years ago

I’m posting because I get asked a lot to referee by certain journals, and not at all by others. I’d be happy to ref for those other journals. I’m sure they could use the help as well. AOS: Metaphysics.Report

Justin Remhof
Justin Remhof
5 years ago

I’ll help out. AOS: 19th Century Philosophy, esp. NietzscheReport

Joshua Wretzel
Joshua Wretzel
5 years ago

Quick, thorough reviews at bargain-basement prices!
AOS: Kant and German Idealism, Hermeneutics, Philosophy of Mind.Report

Kevin DeLapp
Kevin DeLapp
5 years ago

Put me in, coach. AOS: metaethics, moral psychology, classical Confucianism.Report

Trevor Hedberg
5 years ago

I’ve received far more referee reports than I’ve provided, so I would certainly be willing to do more. AOS: Applied Ethics (especially environmental ethics), EpistemologyReport

Joe Ulatowski
Joe Ulatowski
5 years ago

I’m in, too… Some journals ask me two or three times a year, but I’d be happy to referee for others. AOS: Metaphysics & Philosophy of Language, esp. debates in philosophy of action; nature of truth.Report

Thom Brooks
5 years ago

I’ve written something about guidelines for referees – some advice from my 10 years as founding editor of the Journal of Moral Philosophy and reviewing for over 50 journals:

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1719043Report

Gabriel
5 years ago

Great service, guys. I’m in.

AOS: 19th century philosophy, esp. Hegel and Kierkegaard.Report

Paul Henne
Paul Henne
5 years ago

Paul Henne: metaphysics (causation, fiction, nothingness) and moral psychologyReport

Ryan T. O'Leary
Ryan T. O'Leary
5 years ago

AOS: Religion and nature; civil religion in America; philosophical theologyReport

Kevin Gray
Kevin Gray
5 years ago

I am happy to (and probably should) do more. AOS: Philosophy of law, social political philosophy (both informed by critical theory)Report

John R. Harris
John R. Harris
5 years ago

Happy to help too. AOS: Philosophy of Law, Political Philosophy, and Applied Ethics.Report

David DiQuattro
David DiQuattro
5 years ago

I’d like the chance to review more. AOS: Ethical Theory, especially virtue ethics; practical reason and moral psychologyReport

Clement Loo
Clement Loo
5 years ago

I get asked to review fairly regularly so I don’t feel like I’m being unfairly ignored but I really do enjoy getting the opportunity to read new work and see what folks with interests similar to mine are working on.

The above being the case, if any editors are getting articles about food systems, environmental justice, or consultation with marginalized communities (in instances relevant to development or the environment), please feel free to send a review request my way.Report

Alex Howe
Alex Howe
5 years ago

Still working the PhD, but fwiw: Ethics, esp. animal rights, political philosophy, and consciousness–esp. the weird panpsychism mess.Report