Submission review

Review Types

Submission to IAMCR conferences are generally abstracts of proposed papers (which may be in progress or even completed at the time of submission). The abstracts are reviewed by the sections and working groups. Authors of accepted abstracts are then invited to present their papers at the conference. It is generally expected that full papers (which may be working papers or final ones) will be submitted via the IAMCR website several weeks prior to the conference.

Sections and Working Groups at IAMCR vary in the way that abstracts / paper proposals are reviewed. This page indicates the various methods and criteria used. Individual scholars may wish to contact the heads of the section or working group to learn which methods and criteria they employ.

Blind Review

A blind review is where submissions are reviewed by reviewers who do not know the name of the author(s) (files have had identifying information removed). Submissions are scored based upon academic criteria set by the Sections and Working Groups. Selection is based upon the scores and comments only, and sessions are constructed based on the submissions selected. This is the most common review type for most IAMCR sectons and working groups.

Section and Working Group Officers Review

This form of review is conducted by Section and Working Group officers. Submissions are reviewed either blindly or not. The criteria for the submissions are determined by the officers in committee. The selections can be based upon scores (as in blind review), or through discussions as a committee. It is possible to have themes in mind beforehand and selections based upon these themes.

Section and Working Group Head Review

The chair (or co-chairs) of a Section or Working Group makes the selections. Abstracts are selected based on academic standards and the themes of the group. Reviewing is not blind.

Review criteria

IAMCR's Scholarly Review Committee has developed a list of 5 criteria to be considered when reviewing an abstract. Sections and Working Groups may use additional criteria and may assign different weights to the above criteria. Examine the section or working group's call for papers closely and contact the heads if you have questions.

The recommended criteria are:

  • Technical merit - How solid is the presented work? Is the evaluation methodology appropriate? Does the data seem accurate? Are there any fatal flaws in underlying assumptions?
  • Readability - How easy is it to understand the submission? Factors that can affect readability include writing style, organisation, grammar, spelling, and inappropriate submission length, among others. Minor grammatical and typological errors can be disregarded and should not be a reason to give a low score.
  • Originality and/or significance - Will attendees learn something that they didn't already know from this submission? How original, significant, or thought-provoking is it?
  • Use of or contribution to theory - Does the paper make good use of theory? Will it contribute to it?
  • Relevance to the section or working group - How appropriate is this submission for the section or working group?

The pages in this section of the website contain some resources for IAMCR participants and for heads of sections and working groups as they prepare for the conference.

  • Session Types at IAMCR Conferences describes the two main types of sessions (Paper Presentation Session and Basic Panel Session) as well as a number of alternative session types that heads or participants might want to employ.
  • Submission Review describes the different types of review processes used by IAMCR's sections and working groups as well as the criteria that are most often used to evaluate proposals.
  • Guidelines for Presenters provides some suggested guidelines for scholars presenting papers at IAMCR conferences. These are suggested guidelines intended to be helpful on a voluntary basis; they are not strict rules and practices may vary among the various sections and working groups.
  • Tips for Session Chairs & Discussants offers ideas for how session chairs and discussants can ensure that sessions run smoothly, highlight scholarship, and encourage discussion.