Wednesday, 7 January 2009

J.H.E.P. and P.R.D.

Compare and contrast the following reviews of the same paper. This review is from PRD (subject masked to protect my identity)

"This article addresses an interesting question of XXXXXXXXXXX. The study is exploratory even though a lot of open ends are left for future investigations. The paper has revealed decriptively a wide class of XXXXXXXXXXX. The writeup is well organized and the presentation is clear. Therefore, the referee recommends its publication in Physical Review D."

Short and sweet. Now, this review is from JHEP:

"This paper is an elaboration on a marginal subject. There is no sound theoretical reason to expect XXXXXXXXXXX to exist and to discuss details of their XXXXXXXXXXX is certainly not something JHEP should do. We regret that we are unable to publish the paper. The decision is final."

Is the difference because of `quality' of the journals? Well no, not really. The difference is in their different (but not mutually exclusive) sets of reviewers. This is, of course, what really decides on whether you're published or not -- does the reviewer know you/ like you/ think you're a crackpot/ decide to take his frustrations out on you because he hasn't had any for 5 years?

Still, published without changes. Sweeeet.

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