Peer Community In

“Peer Community in” (PCI) is a non-profit scientific organization that aims to create specific communities of researchers reviewing and recommending, for free, unpublished preprints in their field.

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PCI Webinar Series


17 PCIs
1,370 SUBMISSIONS (Nov 2023)
3,147 PEER-REVIEWS (Nov 2023)

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We are pleased to announce the 4th seminar of the PCI webinar series:

7th of December 2023 at 4 pm CET (until 5.15 pm) via Zoom

Interventional Research on Research to improve the peer-review process

by Isabelle Boutron (APHP, France)

Online via Zoom.

Mandatory registration at:


The peer-review process is considered a cornerstone for ensuring the dissemination of trustful research results. The presentation will focus on the existing evidence of the impact of the peer-review process on the quality of scholarly publications as well as how Interventional Research on Research could question and improve the process.

Isabelle Boutron is Professor of Epidemiology at the Université Paris Cité and head of the METHODS research team at the Centre for research in Epidemiology and Statistics (CRESS). She is also director of the Cochrane France within the international Cochrane network.

Her work focuses on the methodological issues when evaluating pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments. She is exploring new methods of synthesizing evidence (e.g. living systematic reviews).

She is internationally recognised for her work in the field of “Interventional Research on Research “, which aims to rethink and transform our research practices (open science, transparency of research, publication bias, selective reporting, distortion of research results (spin) and impact of the peer-review process). She is a member of the steering committee of the SPIRIT-CONSORT group, which draws up international recommendations for writing protocols (SPIRIT) and scientific articles (CONSORT) in order to promote transparency in health research.

What is the PCI webinar series?

-What is it? Seminars on research practices, publication practices, evaluation, scientific integrity, meta-research.
-How does it work? Remote conferences using Zoom with registration.
-For whom is it? For anyone interested in scholarly publication, all PCI users, all PCI recommenders who do preprint evaluations for PCI, authors of articles, etc.
-When is it? Once a quarter
-Why is it for? To learn about scholarly publishing, to improve our knowledge about scholarly review, to become better reviewers, to create a sense of community among PCI users. 

Past webinars


21st September 2023

Registered Reports 2.0:
Introducing the Peer Community in Registered Reports

by Chris Chambers (Cardiff University, UK)


Registered Reports are a form of empirical publication, offered by over 350 journals, in which study proposals are peer-reviewed and pre-accepted before research is undertaken. By deciding which articles are published based on the question, theory, and methods, Registered Reports offer a remedy for a range of reporting and publication biases. In this talk, I will introduce a relatively new platform for supporting Registered Reports called the Peer Community in Registered Reports (PCI RR). PCI RR is a non-profit, non-commercial platform that, like the many other PCIs, coordinates the peer-review of preprints ( but in this specifically for RRs. PCI RR is also joined by a growing fleet of “PCI RR-friendly” journals that agree to endorse the recommendations of PCI RR without further review (, giving the authors the power to choose which journal, if any, will publish their manuscript. By reclaiming control of the peer review process from academic publishers, PCI RR offers a promising avenue for ensuring that Registered Reports are made as open, accessible, and rigorous as possible, while also moving toward a future in which journals themselves become obsolete. Background:


15th June 2023

Publication bias in ecology and evolutionary biology

by Alfredo Sánchez-Tójar (Department of Evolutionary Biology, Bielefeld University, Germany)


Recently, several worldwide multi-lab replication attempts in the social sciences and medicine have exposed alarmingly low rates of replicability of scientific findings. This ‘Replication Crisis’ – perhaps better named ‘Credibility revolution’, has been the catalysts of a movement towards more open, reliable and transparent science. Although the fields of ecology and evolutionary biology currently lack multi-lab replication projects of similar magnitude to those in the social sciences and medicine, we can obtain indirect but key information about replicability by studying publication bias. Publication bias occurs when a subset of research findings, such as statistically non-significant results, are less likely to appear (or appear earlier) in the scientific literature, leading to a distorted view of the overall evidence for a hypothesis. In this talk, I will introduce (1) what publication bias is and the most commonly observed types of publication bias, (2) briefly explain how we can study publication bias, and (3) showcase some of the most outstanding and worrying examples of publication bias (past and present) in ecology and evolutionary biology. I will finish off my talk by introducing and discussing a few procedure that can help researchers actively combat publication bias and, thus, lead to a less distorted understanding of the natural world.


16th and 20th March 2023

Ethical publishing: how do we get there?

by Fernando Racimo (Globe Institute, University of Copenhagen)


The academic journal publishing model is deeply unethical: today, a few major, for-profit conglomerates control more than 50% of all articles in the natural sciences and social sciences, driving subscription and open-access publishing fees above levels that can be sustainably maintained by publicly funded universities, libraries, and research institutions worldwide. About a third of the costs paid for publishing papers is profit for these dominant publishers’ shareholders, and about half of them covers costs to keep the system running, including lobbying, marketing fees, and paywalls. The paywalls in turn restrict access of scientific outputs, preventing them from being freely shared with the public and other researchers. Thus, money that the public is told goes into science is actually being funneled away from it, or used to limit access to it. Alternatives to this model exist and have increased in popularity in recent years, including diamond open-access journals and community-driven recommendation models. Here, we give a brief overview of the current state of the academic publishing system, including its most important systemic problems. We then describe alternative systems. We explain the reasons why the move toward them can be perceived as costly to individual researchers, and we demystify common roadblocks to change. Finally, in view of the above, we provide a set of guidelines and recommendations that academics at all levels can implement, in order to enable a more rapid and effective transition toward ethical publishing.