Manuscripts submitted to Francis journals are reviewed by at least two experts. Reviewers are asked to evaluate the quality of the manuscript and to provide a recommendation to the external editor on whether a manuscript can be accepted, requires revisions or should be rejected.
We ask invited reviewers to:
As part of the assessment, reviewers will be asked:
We ask reviewers to inform the journal editor if they hold a conflict of interests that may prejudice the review report, either in a positive or negative way. The editorial office will check as far as possible before invitation, however we appreciate the cooperation of reviewers in this matter. Reviewers who are invited to assess a manuscript they previously reviewed for another journal should not consider this as a conflict of interest in itself. In this case, reviewers should feel free to let us know if the manuscript has been improved or not compared to the previous version.
Reviewers should keep the content of the manuscript, including the abstract, confidential. Reviewers must inform the Editorial Office if they would like a student or colleague to complete the review on their behalf.
Francis journals operate single or double blind peer review. Reviewers should be careful not to reveal their identity to the authors, either in their comments or in metadata for reports submitted in Microsoft Word or PDF format.
Some journals offer authors the possibility to publish review reports with their paper and for reviewers to sign their open review reports, however this will only be done at publication with your express permission. If this is the case, it will be noted in the message inviting you to review. In all other cases, review reports are considered confidential and will only be disclosed with the explicit permission of the reviewer.
Note that reviewers are given access to all review reports for manuscripts they review via the online submission system after the final decision has been made.
Please rate the following aspects of the manuscript:
If reviewers become aware of such scientific misconduct or fraud, plagiarism or any other unethical behavior related to the manuscript, they should raise these concerns with the in-house editor immediately.
Please provide an overall recommendation for the publication of the manuscript as follows:
The manuscript makes a significant and unique contribution to current knowledge, is clearly presented, and describes the methodology with sufficient details to be verifiable.
The manuscript could be acceptable for publication, but would either benefit from specific changes to improve overall quality or from corrections to minor methodological errors (that do not change the conclusions of the paper). Reviewers may request that the revised manuscripts are sent to them for another review.
There is some merit in the article, but it fails to meet all the requirements for publication. Reviewers should clearly and specifically mention areas for improvement and, if possible, provide references to substantiate the comments made. A revised version of the article will usually be sent to the reviewer for further comment.
The article has serious flaws, makes no original contribution, or the amount of work required to make it publishable could not be completed in a reasonable amount of time. Reviewers should assist the authors by suggesting how the manuscript could be altered to bring it to a publishable standard. An opportunity to revise the manuscript may be offered to the authors at the discretion of the external editor. In this case, the reviewer will usually be invited to comment on the revised version.
Note that your recommendation is visible only to journal editors, not to the authors.
Francis aims to provide an efficient and high quality publishing service to authors and to the scientific community. We ask reviewers to assist by providing review reports in a timely manner. Please contact the editorial office if you require an extension to the review deadline.
Review reports should contain: