repost about peer review
We obtain four sets of results.
First, shorter deadlines reduce the time referees take to submit reports substantially.
Second, cash incentives significantly improve speed, especially in the week before the deadline. Cash payments do not crowd out intrinsic motivation: after the cash treatment ends, referees who received cash incentives are no slower than those in the four-week deadline group.
Third, social incentives have smaller but significant effects on review times and are especially effective among tenured professors, who are less sensitive to deadlines and cash incentives.
Fourth, all the treatments have little or no effect on rates of agreement to review, quality of reports, or review times at other journals.
We conclude that small changes in journals’ policies could substantially expedite peer review at little cost. More generally, price incentives, nudges, and social pressure are effective and complementary methods of increasing prosocial behavior.
A new paper in the JEP by Chetty, Saez and Sandor.