“Nature” is one of the oldest scientific journals in existence. First Published in 1869, it is also one of the most distinguished and prestigious scientific journals and was ranked the world’s most cited academic journal in 2010. The Nature Publishing Group (NPG) includes 117 academic journals ranging from Acta Pharmacologica Sinca (China’s leading journal on pharmacology) to Vital (for the British Dental Association). NPG also publishes Smithsonian.
Two of NPGs journals, Nature Climate Change and Nature Geosciences, are beginning a new trail in peer review publishing: the double blind review. Normally in a blind review, the author of the paper does not know who the reviewers are. This helps the anonymity of the reviewer and encourages open and honest critique. In a double blind peer review, the review does not know who the author(s) is/are either, further encouraging completely unbiased critique.
The double blind option (Opening blurb from this months eVersion of Nature Climate Change)
Concerned about referee bias? During submission to Nature Climate Change, consider choosing the double-blind peer review option so that author information is not shared with reviewers. Some background on our reasons for offering this choice can be found in a recent Nature Climate Change Editorial. We also provide a checklist to help authors to anonymize their papers.
Blind Faith (Editorial about the new procedure in Nature Climate Change)