Past Issues

In Appreciation of 2010 Journal Reviewers

Winston W. Shen

Since the introduction of the refereed process
in Nature in late 1950’s, most scientifi c journal
editors rely on manuscript reviewers to assess the
quality of the submitted articles. The editors at
Taiwanese Journal of Psychiatry also use the consultants
chosen from the members of Taiwanese
Society of Psychiatry to review all the submitted
All the blind reviewers do not know the identities
of the authors. They need to write two copies
of assessments. One copy of the assessment is intended
for both authors and editors on what are
the strengths of the submitted manuscripts, and
what are their weaknesses. The second copy of the
assessment is intended to be read only by the editors
for advising the status of the manuscript: to
accept, to reject or to review again after major or
minor revisions are made according to reviewer’s
assessment. To my surprise, the expressed opinions
of two reviewers are often strikingly similar.
If there is a discrepancy, I do not hesitate to seek
the third reviewer’s opinion. When the manuscript
is fi nally accepted or rejected, all the blind opinions
are carbon copied to all blind reviewers’ for
their self-education and to show how other peers
stand for their opinions.
When I was in St. Louis, the people there in
academia did not believe that there are such persons
called “experts,” but that all experts are all
self-proclaimed. An expert, if any, is based roughly
on two operational criteria: a person who is
from out of town and who has some slides in the
The assignments for reviewers for TJP are
not purely by chance or serendipity. They are specifi
cally chosen from the pool of 1,300 members
who have some background in the topic areas.
They are currently doing the same sorts of research
or clinical work. Or they used to work in
the same topic area of the given manuscripts. For
example, among the gourmet reviewers to review
the quality of restaurants, a reviewer is good to assess
a dish of entrée, but not necessarily qualifi ed
to say any thing about other dish such as an horsd'oeuvre
or a désert. The same thing is applicable
to the TJP reviewers. One reviewer is competent
for assessing a biological research article but not
necessarily good for reviewing a psychotherapy
report, or vice versa.
In the year of 2010, TJP used 55 reviewers.
To note, four reviewers assessed the same manuscript
repeatedly for four times! Due to their selfless
diligent devotion, TJP is blessed to keep our
standard as a refereed journal. The listing below
of 55 names desert our thanks.
Key Word
Editorial Committe, Taiwanese Journal of Psychiatry
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