Here at ProposalSpace we not only want to make peer review easier, we also want to provide a venue where best practices for peer review can be developed and promoted. As a first step, we want to pass along Dr. Stanley S. Siegelman’s “Golden Rule” for reviewers from the February 1988 issue of Radiology:
Most reviewers are also active authors. Referee the manuscript as you would like to have your own papers treated. Be thoughtful and helpful. Offer fair, thorough, and constructive criticism. The reviewer’s tone should be friendly and supportive, never harsh or adversarial. Avoid derogatory, potentially offensive, or demeaning comments. We don’t want to dampen the enthusiasm of budding young academicians. Test your critique for fairness and objectivity by asking yourself if you would be willing to sign it and send it to the author.
Reviewers in ProposalSpace are not only able to score proposals, they can also attach comments to them. The call administrator determines whether those comments are restricted (made available only to review chairs and administrators) or revealed to the proposal’s authors. Regardless of how comments are handled, Dr. Siegelman’s advice provides valuable guidance for making the most of every reviewer’s effort.