The peer review process is the backbone of academic publishing and the most important vehicle for quality assurance of published material. The peer review process of academic texts leads to further development of each discipline as a whole, as well as for the researchers involved. Stockholm University Press values the tradition of collegial discussions while adding integrity to the review process and ensuring the widest dissemination of the final result.
Stockholm University Press ensures that all book publications are quality checked before publication. Each book proposal submitted to the Press will be sent to a dedicated Editorial Board of experts in the subject area. The Editorial Board will evaluate the proposal information with a focus on the academic nature of the submission and background of the project, the structure and style of the book and the intended audience. The Editorial Board will then recommend a book proposal for the Publishing Committee, who makes the final decision about moving forward with the project.
Sometimes the Press receives book proposals where the author(s)/editor(s) works at the same department or institution as the majority of the Editorial Board members for the subject area. In such cases, the Press recommends the Editorial Board to appoint at least one, but preferably two, external reviewers. They will be asked to comment on the quality and relevance of the proposal.
Once a book proposal is approved and a contract has been signed with the author or editor, the process continues with an evaluation of the full manuscript version of the book.
The manuscript will be sent for peer review where two independent and external experts (see further explanation below) are invited to comment either on the whole book or on chapters in an edited collection. Reviewers are selected based on their area of expertise in relation to the content of the book, and they are asked to follow these guidelines for ethical editing, based on recommendations from the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). The reviewer comments will be assessed by the Editorial Board, who will make a recommendation about accepting, revising or declining the book. Final approval before publication is made by the Publishing Committee, based on recommendations from an Editorial Board.
For a longer description of the book publishing process see the book author guidelines as well as the principles of working with editorial boards. Information about the peer review process will be available in each published book, and names of the reviewers can be made public at that point in time, given that all involved parties agree.
All journals published by Stockholm University Press are peer reviewed and must follow the general guidelines for ethical editing stipulated by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE).
All manuscripts submitted to a Stockholm University Press journal are initially assessed by an editor, who decides whether or not the article fits the scope of the journal and is suitable for peer review. Manuscripts are then sent to at least two external and independent reviewers (see the heading 'External Reviewers' below). The journals can use a double-blind, single-blind or open peer review processes. It is up to each Editorial Team to decide what works best for their subject area and audience.
Stockholm University Press ensures that journal teams receive editorial support, ethical guidance and undertake professional networking to follow best practice and to guarantee a high quality output.
The overall editorial responsibility for maintaining the rigour of the review process rests with each journal’s Editor-in-Chief. They are supported by an international Editorial Board of experts in the subject area and/or sub-disciplines. Please visit each journal website to learn more about their specific editorial policies.
Peer review is of importance to ensure the integrity of the scholarly record. A requirement for all books and journals published by Stockholm University Press is, therefore, to apply a structured and transparent process for assessment of the material before publication. Reviewers are asked to provide formative feedback about the clarity, validity, and sound methodology of the material under assessment. As the review process is based on trust, it is important that everyone involved behaves responsibly and ethically.
The guidelines from the Committee on Publication Ethics advice that reviewers should be independent of the author or editor of the book or journal, meaning that:
The Editors or Editorial Boards will use the reviewer comments to make a recommendation to the Publishing Committee about rejection, minor or major revisions, or acceptance of a manuscript. The Publishing Committee make the final decision about the manuscript.
Peer review is at the core of the quality assurance process for Stockholm University Press, meaning that the hard work done by reviewers of books is essential to recognise. While the press is a non-profit organisation, and as such, we can not give monetary remuneration for contributors and, therefore, we have to look at other ways to give merit to those involved.
The reviewers get credit for their work when we publish the names of the people involved in the review process for each book. The publication of the names is made not only to be transparent but also to create a public record of our appreciation for the work done.
To publish the names of reviewers requires the approval of all people involved in the process. No names are, however, revealed to the author before the final publishing decision.
The journals published by Stockholm University Press do not use this practice.