Peer Review

Long discussion with Matt Thomas, PSU Professor of Entomology, on our road trip back from a meeting in Manhattan.  The meeting was to set up our 7-year project on malaria in India, just recently funded by NIH.  Professor Jane Carlton at NYU has done a wonderful job at setting the thing up.  But she worried today about our aim to figure out whether malaria will get better or worse in India under various climate change scenarios.  Too controversial, she asked?

She might be right.  But we decided the Indians have a right to know, and we should try to contribute what we can.  This is important, whatever the answer.
We also pondered how I should teach peer review on this course.  Peer review is a pillar of the scientific process.  But how to teach it?  Maybe I have to fall back on my own personal experiences?  I’ve certainly had some cracker referees’ comments over the years.  My favorite is the recent comment calling one of our papers morally reprehensible but recommending immediate publication.

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