MIND employs a system of ‘triple anonymous 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 Managing Editor on the basis of subject area to a member of the editorial team who makes an initial assessment about its suitability. To reduce the time that authors wait for decisions, many submissions will be rejected at this stage without comments. Even highly creditable submissions will be rejected at this stage. 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 will be rejected. When the advice is uniformly strongly positive, the paper will be considered by the Editors for a final decision. In many cases the advice that we receive from referees is mixed. In such cases it is MIND’s policy carefully to consider submissions in light of the referees’ comments and, occasionally, authors are given a verdict of either a ‘Major Revise and Resubmit’ or a verdict of a ‘Minor Revise and Resubmit’. 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 editors 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. The decision of the editors on the acceptability of any submitted article is final, and correspondence will not be entered into in relation to any submission that is not accepted for publication.
MIND receives over 600 submissions per annum, and our current acceptance rate is approximately 5%. Our mean time to decision is within 7 weeks, but it can take longer in some cases.