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What is Publons?


Introduction: Publons is a service used by academics that allows them to track, verify, and showcase their peer review for scholarly journals. Its mission is to speed up science by harnessing the power of “peer review”. It provides a verified record of an academic’s review and editorial activity for journals. Also, it provides tools for publishers to find, screen and contact potential peer reviewers; data about peer review; training for researchers who are new to review; and a venue for academics to discuss published research. Reviewers can choose whether or not to make their review open access after publication if the journal is in agreement.

History: Publons was launched in 2012 by Andre Preston and Daniel Johnston to address the moribund state of peer-reviewing practices in publishing, by encouraging speeding scientific development. It was acquired by Clarivate Analytics in 2017. Also the same year, Publons won the ALPSP Innovation in Publishing Award.

As of 2018, Publons states it has over 400,000 researchers, 2 million reviews, for over 25,000 Publons. It also offers Publons Academy, which is a review training course for new researchers. The course is free, as is the Publons service to academics. Publishers are charged a fee to use their services.

Features: Publons claims by using its service, academics can help in individual evaluations, such as performance reviews or with promotions and salary. It can also assist with funding, grant applications, and even green card applications. To many, Publons has been a welcome addition to “peer review”, which many needs to move forward into the 21st century.

Importance: Publons database is very-very important in today’s perspective. It is a portal which will keep all the records to the review profile. Meticulously, it would keep all those records, date and time; sequence in terms of the number of years. Also, new facilities are available; one can import all the databases and source of information from Scopus Id, Wave of Science Id.

Now, the Publons database is a profile where the researchers can easily detect the Databases and search publications and even the citations through the reviewed papers. This is sometimes very important in today’s competitive world. Suppose, if a person is a regular reviewer of a journal, the journal will give outstanding certificate related to that and all sorts of record will be catered related to the Publons.

Through Publons one can find typical journal reviews like how many reviewers have visited a particular page and also the reviewers in the world in the last 12 months. Through their photographs, one can find the person who reviewed the paper. To understand the reviewers from the top institute, there has to be a list of the faculty members and thus the research implications of an institute can be understood. A review is an honour but only if it is coming from a very-very good journal and the honour has to be executed with utmost care.

Publons Academy

Publons provide free online training that helps an individual to learn essential skills, which one need to become a master of “Peer review”. On course completion, one receives an official certificate and an endorsement demonstrating their compatibility and competency as a peer reviewer. The course is of approximately 10-15 hours only.

Publons (Peer review) Strategy

1. Publons gives researchers cross-publisher recognition for peer review.

2. Publons collect reviews, publisher integrations and turn them into verifiable, measurable research output.

3. If researchers join Publons, they should take pride in the peer-review process; try to review at least two papers for everyone we publish. Publons might be a good start for motivating inactive scientists to start reviewing more papers, but maintaining and updating the account could also become another chore on the academic to-do list and thus be counterproductive.

4. Publons is quickly gaining in popularity. As of 20 November 2015, it boasts about 50,000 members who together have uploaded nearly 250,000 reviews from 14,500 different journals.

5. The service is based on the hypothesis that “when reviewers get official recognition for their work, they are more willing to accept review requests, more willing to prioritize time to do the review quicker and more likely to do a comprehensive review”

6. Publons has also formed alliances with the scientific social media services ORCID and Impact Story, which means that Publons verified reviews can be automatically displayed alongside other online research profiles.  

Publons profile is quick and easy to maintain and can be used as evidence of one’s research work done. It also provides valuable insights into one’s publication and reviews history. Also as it is a free service it makes it easy for researchers to track and demonstrate all your work in a single profile.