The hidden map of science: Pre-publication history of articles tells us that rejection leads to higher citations

Vincent Calcagno’s research on science journal submissions

Vincent Calcagno wanted to understand why work is rejected by academic journals. He quickly realised that he could only find out why articles were rejected by asking the people who had submitted them in the first place.

This prompted him to design an ambitious research study to collect 10,000 responses from people who had submitted work to journals for publication. The data he collected from the email responses was complex; he did not expect to find significant patterns but ultimately proved himself wrong. He did find patterns and the most intriguing finding is that the more times a piece of work is submitted to journals before being accepted for publication, the higher the ultimate number of citations for the article.

Calcagno also found that about 75 per cent of all published articles are actually published by the journal to which they are initially submitted. He had expected a majority of published articles to have been resubmitted from another journal.

This was a complex piece of research, and the article published on the LSE blog gives more much detail.  Calcagno’s work should encourage all researchers to recognise the ‘benefit of rejection’ and continue editing and resubmitting their work to journals.

Click here to read his full blog post on the London School of Economics Impact of Social Sciences blog.

Diana Hayes
A key part of the founding team, Diana is achievement-oriented, forward-thinking and strategic in creating a high-yielding network of interested academics, universities and related associations. Her research and content have created genuine engagement amongst both candidates and employers resulting in a network of 250,000 academics. Diana’s experience is in sales, marketing, event management and business development.

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