Peer Review in eScholarship


eScholarship provides a publishing platform for both peer-reviewed and non-peer-reviewed scholarly works. Manuscripts designated in eScholarship as peer-reviewed have been accepted for publication and include all revisions and modifications resulting from a peer review process. 


All peer reviewed publications within eScholarship are designated as such with the following icon:  peer review iconPeer Reviewed



Current eScholarship guidelines for peer review


Standards and processes for peer review vary across the many disciplines represented in eScholarship. For an item to be designated as “peer reviewed” via the eScholarship icon, we require that: 

  • The journal or publication series has a peer-review process that is transparent, and a statement outlining these policies is readily available for readers to inspect on the information pages of the journal or publication series.

  • The publication's policies include an editorial process which encompasses at least single-blind peer review by one or more specialists in a relevant field selected by an editor or editorial board. We will occasionally make exceptions to this policy; contact us if you believe a publication you manage should be designated as peer reviewed.


Peer Review Best Practices


While peer review best practices can vary by discipline, all rigorous peer review processes share some commonalities (adapted from the American Association of University Presses Best Practices for Peer Review)

  • Confidentiality and anonymity are built into the process.

  • The process involves at least two simultaneous reviews of manuscripts.

  • Reviewers are chosen for their expertise in the subject matter of each individual work.

  • Policies are in place to avoid conflict of interest, including avoiding reports from colleagues at the same institution, members of the author’s dissertation committee, members of the author’s graduate student cohort, and close friends or collaborators 

  • Peer reviewers are provided a short list of questions to guide their evaluation of a project in order to improve the chances that the review will address the points most pertinent to the publication decision. 


Help with the Peer Review Process within eScholarship


eScholarship also provides a back-end peer-review-management system to handle the mechanics of the peer-review process. This system enables editors or publishing program administrators to:


  • Accept online proposals and submissions

  • Track editorial process; maintain version control

  • Send automated reminder emails to reviewers and editors

  • Track referee correspondence and manuscript status

  • Eliminate mail and copy costs


Learn more about the peer review management system here.


How is the peer review status of a publication within eScholarship determined?


Since October 19, 2009: Authors or editors must self-report the peer review status of a manuscript upon upload to eScholarship. We further encourage all journals published in eScholarship to include explicit peer review statements as a part of their policy materials. 


Prior to October 19, 2009: The peer review status of manuscripts was manually determined by eScholarship staff. For the purposes of accommodating the broadest spectrum of disciplines and taking into account evolving publishing practices, we designated a work as peer reviewed if it conformed to the following criteria:

  1. The manuscript published or disseminated by eScholarship is the version that had been accepted for publication after a peer review process and;

  2. The peer-review process of the publication is transparent and a statement outlining these policies is readily available for readers to inspect and;

  3. The publication's policies include an editorial process which encompasses at least single-blind peer review by one or more specialists in a relevant field selected by an editor or editorial board.