NAJ Economics

Peer Reviews of Economics Publications            

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Editorial Board

Susan Athey
Marco Battaglini
Michele Boldrin
V.V. Chari
Jeff Ely
Drew Fudenberg
Matthew O. Jackson
Jon Levin
David K. Levine
Thomas R. Palfrey
Matt Rabin
Debraj Ray
Arthur Robson
Jose A. Scheinkman
Ran Spiegler

ISSN 1558-4682

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FAQ

What is NAJEcon?

  1. What does NAJ stand for? 
  2. What is the purpose of NAJ Economics? 

What is your editorial policy?

  1. What is the formal policy?
  2. Are there informal guidelines?
  3. How do I submit a paper to NAJ Economics? 
  4. Do you get the authors’ permission before publishing a review? 
  5. Can I publish my paper after you review it? 
  6. What about papers that have already appeared in print? 
  7. Will you fix broken links to authors cites? 

How is NAJEcon used?

  1. Can I list a review in NAJ Economics as a peer-reviewed publication in my vita and when I am up for a promotion? 
  2. How can you claim "peer reviewed publication" for articles reviewed in your non-journal? 
  3. How do I cite an article that was not published but was reviewed in NAJ Economics? 
  4. Can I list the fact that an article was reviewed in NAJ Economics in the paper itself? 
  5. Why on earth don’t you provide an engine for full text searches? 

What about the competition?

  1. How do you feel about imitation? 
  2. Are there related or complementary efforts?

What resources can NAJEcon provide?

  1. How can I mirror NAJ Economics? 
  2. How can I get the software used to operate NAJ Economics? 

Information For New Editors

  1. Why am I not listed as a member of the editorial board?
  2. When can I post reviews?
  3. What things should I do as a new editor?

What is NAJEcon?

1. What does NAJ stand for?
NAJ = Not A Journal of. Inspired by GNU = Gnu is Not Unix. Or you may prefer Jeff Ely's suggestion NAJ = NAJ Ain't a Journal of.
2. What is the purpose of NAJ Economics?
The purpose of NAJ Economics is to supplement the existing commercial system of scientific publication with a system of online reviews. Because papers published in printed journals are less available than working papers, which are freely available on the Internet, publication in the traditional sense inhibits scientific communication. It also generates additional costs as most printed journals charge high subscription fees, in particular to libraries. However, it does serve the useful purpose of certifying the scientific quality of published work. It also assures that articles remain available regardless of the idiosyncrasies of individual websites and links. Our immediate goal is to to provide some of the certification and archiving functions current journals while bringing to the attention of the profession recent work we think is meritorious.

What is your editorial policy?

  1. What is the formal policy?

    NAJ Economics produces brief reviews of economic articles which are freely available on the Internet at the time the review is produced. Articles reviewed are supposed to have substantial scientific merit. Any editor may contribute a review of an article s/he finds meritorious. No editor may review a paper of which s/he is an author. NAJ Economics is not a journal, does not accept submissions.

  2. Are there informal guidelines?

    Yes. While Naj Economics does not provide editorial services, editors are encouraged to engage in normal professional activities, including advising authors about ways in which they can strengthen their research and writing. Editors are expected to exercise caution in reviewing papers by close associates, such as students, other editors, or frequent coauthors. Editors are encouraged towards factual statements about the substance of the research and away from the expression of qualitative judgments about its significance. Our informal criterion for reviewing a paper is that is should be interesting and significant.

  3. How do I submit a paper to NAJ Economics?

    You cannot. We accept no submissions and provide no editorial services. This is partly due to the fact that we do this for free and we review papers as we see fit. We depend on authors for quality (both scientific and expositional) control. If they meet our standards we review their papers; if not, not.

  4. Do you get the authors’ permission before publishing a review?

    No. We do not believe anyone’s permission is needed to read and review an article. We do not believe we need permission to link to an article which is freely available on the Internet. Given that caching is widely used by web-browsers, search engines, firewalls, routers and so forth, we believe we do not need permission to cache articles either. However, the law on caching and linking is not well established, so this policy may change in the future to require authors to grant us explicit permission to link to and/or cache their articles. At the current time, as a courtesy, we do notify authors by email that we have reviewed their article.

  5. Can I publish my paper in a journal after you have reviewed it?

    Why not? We do not publish papers, we only review them. You made your paper freely available on the Internet. We reviewed it without your permission. Unless you intend to submit it to a journal that prohibits you from having previously released the paper on the Internet, where is the problem? Also, we cannot prevent other NAJs from reviewing your paper.

  6. What about papers that have already appeared in print?

    Our goal is to review new research. For this reason it is our policy not to review papers that have already appeared in print. Occasionally we do so inadvertently. When we discover this is the case, we remove the review.

  7. Will you fix broken links to authors cites?

    Yes, if the authors notify us about the new link. Otherwise, when we discover a broken link, we will simply mark it as such, relying on the cached copy. Note that we have no control over what appears at the original link – authors may choose to update or revise their papers, or even post completely different papers at the original link. That is their choice. We do cache a copy of the version that was originally reviewed.

How is NAJEcon used?

1. Can I list a review in NAJ Economics as a peer-reviewed publication in my vita and when I am up for a promotion?
Yes. NAJ Econ does not publish negative reviews. We review only articles we believe to have scientific merit.
2. How can you claim "peer reviewed publication" for articles reviewed in your non-journal?
Simple: we provide the peer review and the authors provide the publication. Peer review + publication = peer reviewed publication. We also provide a paper caching service for authors and readers to assure that the article originally reviewed will be readily available at a known location.
3. How do I cite an article that was not published in a printed journal but was reviewed in NAJ Economics?
As in the following sample: Author, John Q. and Second Author [2001]: "The second article ever published," NAJ Economics, 1: 2. The first number should refer to the volume, and the second to the article number since NAJ Economics does not publish papers and does not have page numbers. Note that NAJ Economics does provide links to the papers it reviews and caches copies of the paper originally reviewed, so that that articles reviewed by NAJ Economics can always be accessed through any NAJ Economics website, including the primary site www.najecon.org.
4. Can I list the fact that an article was reviewed in NAJ Economics in the paper itself?
Yes. You may insert a statement such as "peer reviewed by NAJ Economics 2001, 1:2" in the paper (at the beginning, for example) if you wish..
5.  Why on earth don’t you provide an engine for full text searches?
We don’t need to. Google indexes the NAJ Economics site along with the rest of the web. That is one place you can start your search.

What about the competition?

1. How do you feel about imitation?
The sincerest form of flattery. We hope that others will follow our lead and create other NAJs and in particular that NAJ'S will arise to cover fields that we neglect. Very good papers might well appear in several NAJs. Several models are possible, including NAJs that accept formal submissions and use referees. We think the scientific community benefits from competition among journals and NAJs as well as it does from competition between scientists. As soon as practical, we will release our automated NAJ software into the public domain.

2. Are there related or complementary efforts?

There are two complementary projects worth mentioning. The first is NetEc. This is an ambitious all volunteer project to track all economics related material on the internet, and has introduced a number of innovations, including the automatic indexing of working paper series. NetEc differs from NAJEcon in that attempts to document all material, regardless of quality or interest. Incidentally, while NetEc provides search facilities, all NetEc material is also indexed by the major search engines, such as google. The second project is NEC ResearchIndex which is provided for free by a commercial organization. It is a greatly improved version of citation indices such as the Social Science Citation Index, which indexes both published material and material found on the internet, and can often provide the actual text in which a reference occurs. As an alternative model to NAJEcon, but in a similar spirit, is the faculty of 1000 in biology.

What resources can NAJEcon provide?

1. How can I mirror NAJ Economics?
The easiest way is to use software designed for general purpose website mirroring, such as the open source httrack software. Our policy is "These reviews and the pages on which they appear are copyrighted by NAJ Economics and published on the Internet. They may be freely reproduced provided that the substance is not changed." In particular, you are free to mirror the site.
2. How can I get the software used to operate NAJ Economics?
The software is released to the public domain. You can get the source code here. Be warned that the software requires a webserver configured to use PHP and mysql. PHP must be configured in php.ini so that all magic quotes are turned off, with asp style tags turned on, with mysql support, and with sendmail support properly configured.

Information For New Editors

1. Why am I not listed as a member of the editorial board?

Each volume of NAJEcon lists as board members the members of the board at the time of the first posting to the volume. In other words, once a volume is created, the board listed on that volume will not change. Other webpages list the current board. Volumes generally contain 5 reviews. You will be listed on the next volume to be created after you join the board.

2. When can I post reviews?

As soon as you have joined the board and receive a password. You do not have to wait for the volume listing you as a member of the board to be created before posting.

3. What things should I do as a new editor?

The person who contacts you about joining the board will set up an account for you using the board function of "add editor", and tell you the email address and password you need to login. You should first use the board function "personal information." Using this function, you can change your name, email address and password as you wish. You should also provide a link to your own personal website.