A survey of orthopaedic journal editors determining the criteria of manuscript selection for publication

Caroline B. Hing, Deborah Higgs, Lee Hooper, Simon T. Donell, Fujian Song

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

Background: To investigate the characteristics of editors and criteria used by orthopaedic journal editors in assessing submitted manuscripts.
Methods: Between 2008 to 2009 all 70 editors of Medline listed orthopaedic journals were approached prospectively with a questionnaire to determine the criteria used in assessing manuscripts for publication.
Results: There was a 42% response rate. There was 1 female editor and the rest were male with 57% greater than 60 years of age. 67% of the editors worked in university teaching hospitals and 90% of publications were in English.The review process differed between journals with 59% using a review proforma, 52% reviewing an anonymised manuscript, 76% using a routine statistical review and 59% of journals used 2 reviewers routinely. In 89% of the editors surveyed, the editor was able to overrule the final decision of the reviewers.Important design factors considered for manuscript acceptance were that the study conclusions were justified (80%), that the statistical analysis was appropriate (76%), that the findings could change practice (72%). The level of evidence (70%) and type of study (62%) were deemed less important. When asked what factors were important in the manuscript influencing acceptance, 73% cited an understandable manuscript, 53% cited a well written manuscript and 50% a thorough literature review as very important factors.
Conclusions: The editorial and review process in orthopaedic journals uses different approaches. There may be a risk of language bias among editors of orthopaedic journals with under-representation of non-English publications in the orthopaedic literature.
Original languageEnglish
Article number19
JournalJournal of Orthopaedic Surgery and Research
Volume6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 28 Apr 2011

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