Double-blind peer review guidelines
For journals that use double-blind peer review, the identities of both reviewers and authors are concealed from each other throughout the review. To facilitate this, authors must ensure that their manuscripts are prepared in such a way that they do not reveal their identities to reviewers, either directly or indirectly.
Please therefore ensure that the following items are present in your submission and are provided as separate files:
1. Title page
The title page will remain separate from the manuscript throughout the peer review process and will not be sent to the reviewers. It should include:
- The manuscript title
- All authors' names and affiliations
- A complete address for the corresponding author, including an e-mail address
- Conflict of interest statement
2. Anonymised manuscript
Please remove any identifying information, such as authors' names or affiliations, from your manuscript before submission.
As well as removing names and affiliations under the title within the manuscript, other steps need to be taken to ensure the manuscript is correctly prepared for double-blind peer review. The key points to consider are:
- Use the third person to refer to work the authors have previously published. For example, write “Black and Hart (2015) have demonstrated” rather than “we/the authors have previously demonstrated (Black & Hart, 2015)”.
- Make sure that figures and tables do not contain any reference to author affiliations
- Exclude acknowledgements and any references to funding sources. Use the title page, which is not sent to reviewers, to detail these and to declare any potential conflicts of interest to the editor.
- Choose file names with care, and ensure that the file’s “properties” are also anonymised. If you are using Microsoft Office 2007 or later, consider using the Document Inspector Tool prior to submission.
- Take care to ensure that you do not inadvertently upload identifying information within any of the files that will be shared with reviewers. All file types except title page, cover letter and LaTeX source files are typically included in the version of your manuscript shared with reviewers.