MIND employs a system of ‘triple blind review’: the referees and editors do not know the identity of the authors, and authors do not know the identity of the referees.
New submissions are sent by the Editorial Administrator to a member of the editorial team who makes an initial assessment about its suitability. To reduce the time that authors wait for decisions, some submissions are rejected at this stage without comments. In this case, we aim to give a decision within one month, often sooner. Other submissions are sent for review by specialist referees. We ask referees to return reports and recommendations to us within eight weeks, and we aim to provide authors with a decision within four months. Unfortunately in some cases this is not possible. The main reason is the time it takes to find suitable referees and receive reports from them. Most delays are caused when referees agree to provide a report, but then fail to do so. If there are delays in the review process, authors will be kept informed.
Once we receive reports, a member of the editorial team will make a decision regarding the submission, taking into account the advice that we have received from referees. Where the advice is straightforwardly negative, the submission is rejected. When the advice is uniformly strongly positive, the paper is passed over to the Editor for a final decision. But in many cases the advice that we receive from referees is mixed. In such cases, rather than automatically treating recommendations to reject as ‘dominant’ over more positive recommendations, it is MIND’s policy to carefully consider submissions in light of the referees’ comments and in some cases authors are encouraged to revise and resubmit in the light of the reports (and further comments from the editorial team). Resubmitted papers are sent out for review again, usually to the same referees, but sometimes also to a new referee (e.g. where the original referees do not want to report again). If the resubmitted paper receives support from referees it is then transferred to the Editor for final decision. Again, we aim to complete this process within four months.
In the interests of transparency, all referees’ comments will be sent to authors, unless they are deemed offensive or are confidential advice for the editors. Editorial decisions are made with reference to the advice that we receive from referees; however the editorial team should not be taken to endorse the content of referees’ reports, and reserve the right to give a different verdict from that recommended by the referees. All editorial decisions are final, and no dialogue will be entered into regarding editorial decisions.
We endeavour to reply to all correspondence to the MIND office in a timely fashion. However, please be aware that delays might arise at certain times, particularly when the journal is being prepared for production (all copy-editing and proof-reading is done in-house), at busy times of the academic year (the Editorial Administrator and Editorial Assistants all have academic positions), and due to holidays, illness, and other external factors.
MIND received around 450 submissions in 2012, and our current acceptance rate is around 6%(correct at January 2013). Our average time to first decision is currently less than three months, but please bear in mind that it can take longer in some cases for the reasons described above.