Friday, March 12, 2010

"Manuscript published for discussion" !?

The title of this post was the surprising subject of a recent e-mail I got from a scientific journal. It's not the review method I'm used to, but a quite interesting one nonetheless.

I recently made a contribution to a paper by Wouter Buytaert and others, entitled "Uncertainties in climate change projections and regional downscaling: implications for water resources management", which has now appeared in the on-line journal Hydrology and Earth System Sciences Discussions (you can find it here). It will undergo a kind of public on-line review. These are some of the instructions given by the journal:

"In addition to the Author Comments, you and your co-authors can individually publish Short Comments under your names. Short Comments can also be published by all other members of the scientific community. To foster scientific discussion, please forward this information to your co-authors and any other interested colleagues. Please respond to the Referee Comments and relevant Short Comments published in the discussion forum of your paper as soon as possible in order to stimulate further discussion by interested scientists."

After responding to the comments by referees and colleagues and revising the paper, an editorial decision will be made whether or not to publish the paper in the ISI journal Hydrology and Earth System Sciences. I'm curious to see how this will work and, of course, you are all invited to comment!