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Reviewer compensation

DANIEL BUENOCollabra, a new Internet-based open-access scientific journal, will pay small sums to its reviewers—qualified researchers tasked with judging manuscripts and determining which ones get published. This practice breaks with the traditional model, under which most journals use volunteer editors and reviewers. The objective is to enable a portion of the money from the publication fees charged to authors to be paid forward to the scientific community. To save readers the cost of fees or subscriptions, open-access journals charge fees to authors so their papers can be freely disseminated without charge. Collabra plans to charge $875 per article, of which $250 will go to a fund used to pay for peer review. The journal will pay reviewers whether or not the articles are accepted. “Collabra is not just about paying reviewers, but also about directing some of the value generated back into the research community,” said Neil Blair Christensen, Director of Digital Business Development at the University of California Press, which publishes Collabra, in comments to the journal Science.