Publishing a paper can be a long, tedious and ultimately very frustrating process. Publishers can take weeks if not months to get back to you, to eventualy find out that your work does not fit the journal’s scope or is not quite as polished as it should be to be accepted. The work done before the submission such as optimizing the manuscript’s quality and selecting the right journal is key to speed up publication. There is clearly a need for tools and service like Edanz’s journal advisor to help in the process.
Rubriq, launched in beta phase last week, goes a step further. Rubriq offers a rigorous peer-review service for your biological and medical sciences-related manuscript before their submission to publishers. With the help of peer-scientists, they will judge the manuscript’s quality and check for issues such as plagiarism, conflicts of interest and ethical issues. The paper is then attributed a scorecard that can be used as a pre-publishing metric of quality.
The service is still in the beta phase, with a progressive release of the different services over the course of 2013. As of today, Rubriq accepts manuscripts in the field of immunology, cancer biology, and microbiology and offer scorecard completed by three reviewers in two weeks for $500. The full set of service is expected to go live in March 2013.
I like this initiative. It helps streamline a the pre-submission review of manuscripts, a process that often already exists, but is slow and not always very honest. It help authors get published and should help science get communicated better and more efficiently. One aspect I appreciate in particular is that the scientists reviewing the manuscripts through Rubriq are compensated for their time and effort. This is contrast to the volunteering reviewing work currently done by researchers that directly benefit for-profit publishers. Rubriq will also be an energetic partner for the open access community thinking about how to improve the peer-reviewing process.
Rubriq was founded by entrepreneur Shashi Mudunuri and Keith Collier. Rubriq is a sister company of American Journal Experts which offer related services such manuscript editing and preparation.