Guidance for Reviewers

We value the work done by peer reviewers in the academic community, who provide an essential service to the process of publication excellence, driving research within their fields of expertise.

Detailed guidance is available via the SAGE Reviewer Gateway on the following topics:

  • Ethics & Responsibility
  • How to Review an Article
  • Online Submission & Peer Review System
  • Purpose of Peer Review
  • Resources for Reviewers & FAQs
  • Reviewer Rewards
  • Get Credits for Reviews

See Reviewer Gateway for full details.

Review ethics and responsibility

If reviewers suspect any of the following problems with any article that they are reviewing, we recommend that they contact the journal editor to discuss the situation without delay. Reviewers should keep all information about such matters confidential and not discuss them with colleagues other than the journal editor.

• If you suspect that the paper has been either published or submitted to another journal.
• If you suspect that the paper is duplicating the work of others.
• If you suspect that there might be problems with the ethics of the research conducted.
• If you suspect that there might be an undeclared conflict of interest attached to the paper (editors might have more information about this than you do so it is best to check).

We recommend that reviewers should:
• Think carefully about their own potential conflicts of interest relating to the paper before undertaking the review.
• Notify the editor if they become aware of the identity of the author during blind peer review.
• Be careful not to make judgements about the paper based on personal, financial, intellectual biases or any other considerations than the quality of the research and written presentation of the paper.

Full guidelines for peer reviewers can be found on the COPE website

Instructions to reviewers

Reviewers should not pass on the invitation or involve anyone else in the review process without first consulting the handling editor.

Assigned reviewers will find the journal’s Aims and Scope plus the following instructions on how to complete their review online in their Reviewer Centre.

Viewing the manuscript
There are two ways for you to view the manuscript assigned to you:
– Download to a printer
– Read directly from your screen: If you wish to view the manuscript and the review form simultaneously, click on the manuscript title; it will open in a new window. Leave the new window open, switch back to the main window, and open the score sheet.

Score sheet – please complete all fields
In addition to providing qualitative comments on the manuscript outlining your views as to its strengths and weaknesses and suitability for the journal, it would be very helpful if you could let the editor know your views on how the manuscript rates in terms of its:

1. Conceptual contribution
2. Methodological contribution
3. Overall contribution
4. Appropriateness of methods
5. Methodological rigour
6. Integration of theoretical framework and data
7. Practical relevance

Comments to Editor
Contextual information only. Please use this section for confidential comments to the editor ONLY for contextual information, such as how confident you are in your ability to assess the paper; all substantive comment on the paper itself must appear in the Comments to Author section that will be seen by the author(s), editor and any reviewers.

Comments to Author
These comments WILL be conveyed to the author and any other reviewers.
Use this space to convey to the Author and Editor your comments on the paper, suggested changes, etc.
Please comment specifically on the use of analytic methods.
Please number your review comments to make it easier for the editor to refer to specific comments in the decision letter.
Please DO NOT include decision recommendations in this section; instead, please select one of the decision options in the Recommendation section.
Avoid attaching files – please ONLY use the file attachment option for graphical representations, such as suggested changes to tables or figures; please paste your Comments to the Author(s) into the appropriate field instead of attaching them as a file. If you need to use a file attachment because your review comments contain a table or figure, you may attach a file at the bottom of the score sheet, provided:
1. To maintain your anonimity and double-blind peer review, you have removed the ‘Document properties and personal information’ (in MS Word, see under File on the menu bar). Please do not attach PDF files, as these require anonymization of the file creator before they can be forwarded to the author(s) and any reviewers.
2. You have completed the score sheet itself.
3. You have clicked on the ‘This file is for the Author and Editor’ radial button
Please don’t forget to click ‘Attach’ after you have browsed for and selected the correct file(s).

Special symbols – as with other plain text transmissions, such as e-mail, your use of special symbols is restricted. Please use symbols that are found on your keyboard and plain text notations, such as (^) for superscript. For example, you will not be able to use the symbols for Greek letters. You will need to spell these out (e.g. µ needs to be denoted with mu). If you will be repeatedly using a Greek letter, you can re-define the symbol (e.g. G = gamma) at the beginning of the section in which you will be using it.

Submitting your review – it is essential that you first click the ‘Save as Draft’ button located beneath the review, otherwise, none of the information that you have entered will be saved in the system! You may also save the review as a file on your own computer using the cut-and-paste option. You MUST click on the ‘Submit’ button to finalize your review.

Please do not hesitate to contact the Editorial Office if you have any queries about the review process.

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