We know that assessing manuscripts is not easy yet is highly critical to scientific publication. We certainly acknowledge and appreciate the considerable effort and time referees dedicate to the scientific community and the decisive role they play in ensuring the quality of published articles. Feedback from our reviewer community has illustrated, however, that reviewers often feel their efforts go unnoticed.
As a small step towards addressing this and as part of our ongoing efforts to recognize and support our reviewer community, we have initiated an annual recognition program for our journals' reviewers. Starting with 35 journals as a pilot and using a range of criteria such as speed, quality and frequency of review, Editors of the selected titles have hand-picked approximately 25 Reviewers per title whose efforts, dedication and professionalism have been considered outstanding in the past year.
At the beginning of this month, these "outstanding" Reviewers were sent an email informing them of this accolade, together with a link to their digital certificate of excellence - hosted on a secure environment on Elsevier's WebShop and afforded to them in conjunction with the Editors-in-Chief / Editors of the Journal.
Feedback from recipients so far has been overwhelmingly positive; a reviewer for Midwifery commented:
"TO ALL, I received the lovely "certificate of excellence in reviewing" today – and I want to say THANK YOU to the Editorial team members. I am very touched, and deeply appreciate this recognition."
Moving forward, we hope to include many more titles in this program.
You may also be interested to know that we can now provide reviewer certificates upon request to the journal publisher, for those reviewers who require a formal acknowledgement from their institutes that they have reviewed a paper for an Elsevier journal.
If you are interested in learning more about the other ways we strive to offer support and guidance for our Reviewers, please read the article on our Peer Review Challenge or visit our Reviewers' Home page on elsevier.com.
Ursula van Dijk has over 20 years of experience in STM Journals marketing communications. She is based in Amsterdam and as Group Marketing Communications Manager leads a team of marketers within the Physical, Formal and Applied Sciences area with a focus on supporting publishing initiatives by communicating and interacting with our Editors, Authors and Reviewers. Additionally, she is responsible for reaching out to and engaging with our reviewer community with initiatives helping recognize their invaluable contributions to science.