SIAMíS New Policy on Refereeing and Revision Times

SIAM’s 15 journals consider more than 4000 submitted manuscripts every year, an enormous effort that relies on hundreds of volunteer editors and thousands of volunteer referees. As with other mathematics journals, this process often takes quite a while, and in recent years the average interval from submission of a SIAM manuscript to its final acceptance, averaged over all journals, has been about 12.8 months. SIAM has decided to try to improve this figure, with the aim of bringing the average down to 8-9 months. In particular, SIAM’s journal editors will, by default, normally ask a reader to produce a referee report, if possible, within two months. This target can always be overridden for particularly lengthy or difficult manuscripts, and referees can always request extensions. In order to make the best use of volunteer referee efforts, editors also have the mandate to reject (without review) papers that in their opinion are not suitable for publication in the journal due to subject matter or clear weaknesses in scientific content or presentation style.

It is increasingly difficult to find suitable referees for all the papers submitted, and we hope that authors will also do their part to serve as referees for papers when requested by SIAM editors. We welcome comments from authors and referees on the important question of how SIAM should most effectively process its manuscripts, which can be addressed to jcrowley@siam.org.

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