How it Works
Our Publishing Processes
For Articles
7 days
average time to publication
For Posters & Slides
Instant visibility
1 - 2 days
1. Aims and Scope
  • What is F1000Research’s Scope? +
    F1000Research publishes articles, posters and slides reporting basic scientific, translational and clinical research within the life sciences and medicine. F1000Research is a scholarly publication platform set up for the scientific research community; each article has at least one author who is a qualified researcher or clinician actively working in the life sciences and who has made a key contribution to the article.

    Articles must be original (not duplications). All research is suitable irrespective of the perceived level of interest or novelty; we welcome confirmatory and negative results, as well as null studies. F1000Research publishes different type of research, including clinical trials, systematic reviews, software tools, method articles, and many others. Reviews and Opinion articles providing a balanced and comprehensive overview of the latest discoveries in a particular field, or presenting a personal perspective on recent developments, are also welcome. See the full list of article types we accept here.

    Articles (except for F1000 Faculty Reviews, see below) are published using a fully transparent, author-driven model: the authors are solely responsible for the content of their article. Invited peer review takes place openly after publication, and the authors play a crucial role in ensuring that the article is peer-reviewed by independent experts in a timely manner. Articles that pass peer review are indexed in PubMed, Scopus and other bibliographic databases.

    F1000Research is an Open Science platform: all articles are published open access; the publishing and peer review processes are fully transparent; and authors are asked to include detailed descriptions of methods and to provide full and easy access to source data underlying the results to improve reproducibility.

    F1000 Faculty Reviews are commissioned from members of the prestigious F1000 Faculty. Peer review is fully transparent (the referees are listed on the article), but it takes place before publication and only the final version is published.

    Posters and slides are not peer reviewed and do not appear in bibliographic databases such as PubMed.

2. Publishing Model and Processes*
  • Checks before Publication +
    Posters and slides are not editorially checked and are published immediately on submission.

    Article submissions to F1000Research go through a rapid initial check by the in-house editorial team before being published with the status ‘Awaiting Peer Review’. There is no Editor (or Editor-in-Chief) to make a decision on whether to accept or reject the article, or to oversee the peer-review process. F1000Research has an Advisory Board comprising a large group of leading experts across biology and medicine; they provide strategic input, advise occasionally on issues arising with specific articles, and many members of the board also act as invited referees.

    Our editorial team will ensure that the article is within scope and adheres to the ethical and editorial policies, including our data policies. The team will also check that the article is intelligible and written in good English, so it is suitable for peer review and its content can be fully assessed by invited peer reviewers and readers. If a submission fails the initial checks, it will be returned to the authors to address the issues, and if they are not resolved satisfactorily, the article will be rejected.

  • Post-Publication Peer Review of Articles +
    Peer review of articles (not posters and slides) published in F1000Research takes place after publication: Once the article is published, expert referees (who are chosen primarily from the F1000 Faculty where possible) are invited on the authors’ behalf. The peer review is administered on behalf of the authors by the F1000Research editorial team.

    Please note that F1000 Faculty Reviews are commissioned by F1000 Faculty Section Heads, and are authored by at least one peer-nominated F1000 Faculty Member. Open peer review is carried out before publication with the authors and referees collaborating to make the article as comprehensive as possible. The referees’ names and the status they award after the review process are published alongside the article.

  • The Author’s Role during Peer Review of Articles +
    Authors are responsible for identifying suitable referees who are experts in the field and can provide unbiased reports on their article. Before publication, authors are asked to suggest 5 potential referees; they should ideally choose from the F1000 Faculty, which forms the core basis of our list of pre-approved experts. If the authors are unable to find enough experts with suitable experience in the topic of their paper, they can suggest experts outside the F1000 Faculty, who must meet our basic criteria for referees. The editorial team will ask authors to suggest more referees until at least two suitable experts have submitted their reports.
  • Referee Criteria +
    When selecting peer reviewers, authors must apply the following criteria:
    1. Scientific expertise: Referees must have demonstrated expertise in the key topics of the study presented and/or the methods used. They must have published as lead authors at least 5 articles in international journals.
    2. Level of experience: Referees must have a formal appointment at PhD or MD level or higher at a recognised institution or organization.
    3. Independence: Referees must not be working at the same institute as the authors, should not be close collaborators of the authors or in other ways personally, financially or professionally associated with them. Referees must declare any conflicts of interest on the published report.
  • The Referee’s Role +
    Referees are given guidelines specific to each article type. They are generally asked to assess whether the research is scientifically sound, that is:
    • whether the work has been appropriately put into the context of the current literature
    • whether suitable methods have been used
    • whether sufficient information and source data have been provided to allow others to repeat every step of the work
    • whether the conclusions are supported by the findings.
    For some article types, such as Case Reports or Opinion articles, referees are asked to comment on the facts and approaches used, not necessarily whether they agree with the author’s opinion.

    In addition to their written report, referees also select one of three statuses:

    • Approved: No or only minor changes are required. For original research, this means that the experimental design, including controls and methods, is adequate; results are presented accurately and the conclusions are justified and supported by the data.
    • Approved with Reservations: The article is not fully technically sound in its current version, but the reviewer’s criticisms could be addressed with specific, sometimes major, revisions.
    • Not Approved: The article is of very poor quality and there are fundamental flaws in the article that seriously undermine the findings and conclusions.
    The approval status is shown on the article, together with the referee’s name and affiliation, and the detailed report supporting the status they selected.

    If an author decides to revise the article to address the reviewers’ comments, all referees are invited to provide additional reports on the new version; in particular if they had originally given an ‘Approved with Reservations’ or ‘Not Approved’ status, we ask them to assess whether the work has been sufficiently improved to achieve a better approval status.

    Referees who have been invited to assess a specific article may find our at-a-glance referee guidelines helpful; they also explain the benefits of refereeing for F1000Research. We also offer tips for how to write a good peer review report.

  • Revisions and Updates of Articles +
    We strongly encourage authors of articles to address the reviewers’ criticisms and publish revised versions and/or respond to the referees by adding author comments to the referee reports.

    All versions of an article are accessible and can be independently cited, but the latest version will be displayed as the default on F1000Research. A short summary of the changes is displayed at the start of each new version.

    All articles are ‘living’, even after peer review is complete: Authors can ‘update’ their articles at any time (and at no extra charge) if there have been small developments relevant to the findings.

  • Peer Review Status and Indexing of Articles +
    The peer review status of an article is clearly indicated at all stages: Immediately on publication, and until the first referee report is published, the article is labelled as AWAITING PEER REVIEW - as part of the article title and in the Open Peer Review summary box within the article HTML and PDF. As soon as a referee report is received, it is published alongside the article and the current approval status is displayed. As additional reports are received, the peer review status is updated.

    Once an article receives two ‘Approved’ statuses, or two ‘Approved with Reservations’ statuses and one ‘Approved’ status, it will be indexed in various bibliographic databases.

    Editorials and F1000 Faculty Critiques do not go through the external peer-review process and are therefore labelled as NOT PEER REVIEWED.

    A small number of articles may become labelled as PEER REVIEW DISCONTINUED if the authors had serious difficulties in securing any referees for their article after a long period of time; in those rare circumstances, the peer review is no longer ‘active’.

  • Channels and Channel Advisors +
    Channels are central, personalized sites on the F1000Research platform that allow specific scientific communities to share and debate research in their field without barriers. With this service F1000Research offers societies, organizations, conference organizers, research communities and others the opportunity to collate and showcase the material they publish on F1000Research, including articles, posters and slides.

    Many channels have Channel Advisors who define the topics and scope of their channel and act as advocates; they are not 'editors', i.e. they do not decide whether an article is accepted for publication in F1000Research, but they may decide whether a specific article can be listed within their channel. Channel Advisors must be researchers or staff associated with established research institutions or societies or other life sciences organizations.

    Articles (co-)authored by Channel Advisors undergo the same pre-publication checks by the F1000Research editorial team and post-publication peer review by invited referees as articles published by other authors. Channel Advisors can publish up to two Editorials per year, outlining policies and processes directly related to their channel and the community they represent.

    The appointment of Channel Advisors, the channel scopes and the content of Editorials, which are not externally peer-reviewed, are the responsibility of F1000Research’s Editorial Director.

*Does not apply to F1000 Faculty Reviews
3. Licenses
  • The Licenses that Apply to Articles, Posters and Slides, Data and Referee Reports +
    F1000Research articles, posters and slides are usually published under a CC BY license, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and leaves the copyright of the article with the current copyright holder (usually the author or his/her institution). Additional waivers are used for some governmental employees, as appropriate. As the specific version of the CC BY license applied to articles, posters and slides may change due to periodic updates, the copyright information for each article is shown below the abstract.

    Data associated with F1000Research articles (not Posters and Slides unless specifically stated) are made available, where possible, under the terms of a Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication (CC0 license). This facilitates and encourages data re-use and helps prevent the problems of attribution stacking when combining multiple datasets each authored by multiple authors that use multiple different licences.

    Referee reports that are published with a given article are available under the CC BY license.

4. Indexing
  • When and Where Articles are Indexed +
    Articles are immediately indexed in Google Scholar.

    Once an article has passed peer review, i.e. it has received at least two ‘Approved’ statuses, or one ‘Approved’ and two ‘Approved with Reservations’ statuses from independent and invited peer reviewers, it will be indexed in PubMed, PubMed Central, Europe PMC, Scopus, Chemical Abstract Service, British Library, CrossRef, DOAJ and Embase. If an article is indexed, all versions, along with any associated data sets and referee reports, are deposited in PubMed Central.

  • When and Where are Posters and Slides Indexed +
    Once they have been approved and given a permanent identifier (DOI), they are indexed by the Neuroscience Information Framework (NIF).
5. Citing F1000Research Articles, Posters, Slides, Datasets and Referee Reports
  • Citing an Article +

    Articles in F1000Research can be updated and amended at any time post publication, but each version is independently citable with its own DOI (digital object identifier). The most recent version is displayed as the default. The citation can be found by clicking the Cite button on the article page.

    Every article is indexed by the CrossMark Identification Service™, which summarizes the history of an article and any linked publications. Clicking on the CrossMark logo in the HTML or PDF of the article provides up-to-date information on the latest article version, as well as new referee reports and any associated articles (which will be linked [threaded] together).

    Standard citation approaches are insufficient for F1000Research articles because:

    • The referee status of an article will change after publication
    • An article may have multiple versions following revision or update by the authors
    After discussion with our Advisory Board, major indexing services and others, we have adapted the traditional system of citation to include an indication of the referee status and the version of an article.

    This citation includes two additional elements, placed in square brackets, immediately after the article title (to avoid them being accidentally removed on copying):

    1. Article version number, for example version 1 for the first version, and version 2 for the next version, and so on.
    2. Details of the peer review status, i.e. number of reviews that are ‘Approved’, ‘Approved with Reservations’, or ‘Not Approved’. The status will be ‘Awaiting peer review’ before the reviews are published.
    An article should be cited like this:

    Authors. Article title [version number; details of peer review status]. F1000Research Year, Volume: Publication number (doi:)

  • Citing Posters and Slides +
    Posters and slides published after July 2015 have a permanent DOI (digital object identifier). The full citation can be found by clicking the Cite button on each poster or slides page.

    A poster or slide should be cited like this:

    Authors. Poster title. F1000Research Year, Volume: Publication number (doi:)

    Authors. Slides title. F1000Research Year, Volume: Publication number (doi:)

  • Citing a Dataset +
    Datasets in F1000Research articles are also assigned a DOI (digital object identifier) and can be cited independently of the article. The full citation can be found by clicking the Cite button on each dataset.

    A dataset should be cited like this:

    Authors. Dataset 1 in: Article title. F1000Research Year, Volume: Publication number (doi:)

  • Citing a Referee Report +
    Referee reports on F1000Research articles are published under a CC BY license. A DOI (digital object identifier) is assigned to every referee report, so it can be cited independently from the article. The full citation can be found by clicking the Cite button next to each referee report on the article page.

    A referee report should be cited like this:

    Authors. Referee Report For: Article title [version number; details of peer review status]. F1000Research Year, Volume: Publication number (doi:)

6. Posting a Comment on an F1000Research Article
  • How to Comment on Articles +
    We encourage constructive debate on articles published in F1000Research.

    In order to submit a Comment on a specific article, go to the bottom of the article page on the website and click ‘Discuss’ to respond to the article in general, or ‘Respond or Comment’ to reply to a specific referee report. You will then be prompted to login to/register for an F1000Research account.

    When you’re ready to submit your Comment, please ensure you’ve accepted the Terms and Conditions and then click ‘post’.

    Our editorial staff moderate submitted comments to prevent abuse and ensure that they contribute to the scientific discussion; your submitted Comment will not be publicly visible on the article while it is being moderated. We will make every effort to publish all Comments that adhere to our basic policies within 24 hours; however, this may be longer over weekends or public holidays.

Why fast publication is important
63 sec
Why transparency is essential
62 sec
Why all findings should be published
53 sec
Why data should be available
75 sec
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