Peer Review Process
At the JNSPG, peer review for our journals is based on the single-blinded technique. Authors do not know the identity of reviewers, whereas reviewers see the names of authors and their institutions on the manuscript. For the most part, reviews are performed consecutively, which is unusual among scientific journals. Only for the Journal of Neurosurgery: Case Lessons are reviews performed simultaneously.
For the Journal of Neurosurgery, Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine, Journal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics, most reviews are performed by members of our Editorial Boards; a small group of ad hoc reviewers provides input on an as-needed basis. The Editor-in-Chief or Associate Editor reviews all manuscript submissions and all reviewers’ comments before making a final decision.
During an initial screening, some manuscripts are immediately deemed inappropriate for non-JNSPG journals and are returned to the authors with comments from the Editor-in-Chief. Remaining manuscripts are reviewed more extensively by current Editorial Board members, and sometimes specialist reviewers, as selected by the Editor-in-Chief.
Members of the Editorial Boards of the Journal of Neurosurgery, Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine, and Journal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics are selected by a vote undertaken by standing members of each journal’s Editorial Board. Members serve 5 to 7 years, advancing to the position of Chair of their specific Editorial Board in their final year. Editorial Board members usually review 200+ manuscripts per year during their tenure; this number increases to nearly 1000 manuscripts during their final year as Chair.
Peer review for Neurosurgical Focus and Neurosurgical Focus: Video is handled a bit differently. Editorial leadership lies in the hands of the Editor-in-Chief, Associate Editor-in-Chief, and Associate Editor. The structure of the editorial board also includes a group of topic editors that changes with each issue. Each topic editor is an expert in the particular topic covered by the issue and is carefully selected or recruited in advance by the Editor-in-Chief. All issues include a lead topic editor and up to four additional topic editors who serve as reviewers. TheEditor-in-Chief reviews all manuscripts/video manuscripts, as well as all topic editors’ comments, and is responsible for making all final decisions on submissions.
Peer review for the Journal of Neurosurgery: Case Lessons is simultaneous, unlike that for our other journals. The reason is that this open-access, peer-reviewed journal is a rapid-publication periodical that is published weekly. Simultaneous peer review is essential to keeping the time period from manuscript submission to article publication brief. Other than this, peer review for the Journal of Neurosurgery: Case Lessons follows a process similar to that for the Journal of Neurosurgery, Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine, and Journal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics. Most reviews are performed by members of the journal’s Editorial Board, with a small group of ad hoc reviewers providing input on an as-needed basis. The Editor-in-Chief or Associate Editor reviews all manuscript submissions, and both of these editors examine all reviewers’ comments before making a final decision.