Descriptive Statistics and Political Science Journals’ Manuscript Processing

A recent blog post collates the most recent available information on (1) the mean turnaround time for review and (2) the acceptance rate at a large number of political science journals.  Given the general rule that information is good, this is a great thing.  However, knowing only the mean of something like turnaround time is of rather limited usefulness: I really want to know about the variation around that mean.  In fact, given that the value in question is an integer count, I would like to know the mode, and the 5th, 25th, 50th, 75th, and 95th percentiles.  Now, this complaint is not in any way, shape or form a critique of the blog post: I am entirely certain that had the information I prefer been available that it would be posted there.  Instead, my gripe is with journal editors.  I have asked a couple of editors to change their practice of reporting means, but confess to have done so on only a couple of occasions.  So consider this post a commitment device: I shall raise the issue at editorial board meetings to which I have been invited (and/or when I receive the annual report that contains the figures contained therein).  

 

 

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About Will H. Moore

I am a political science professor who also contributes to Political Violence @ a Glance and sometimes to Mobilizing Ideas . Twitter: @WilHMoo
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One Response to Descriptive Statistics and Political Science Journals’ Manuscript Processing

  1. You probably are going to get invited to fewer board meetings.

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