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Peer Review Management

Man participating in a peer review

The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) ensures that scientific reviews are conducted in a professional manner and with a high degree of process integrity. Reviewers participate in postal reviews in which evaluations normally are submitted without group discussion, or in panel reviews where reviewers meet in person to discuss evaluations.

Results are distributed in a timely manner and ORISE eliminates administrative burdens by coordinating travel arrangements, travel reimbursements and onsite honoraria payments.

ORISE implements scientific peer review methods that vary widely depending on sponsor needs, such as:

  • Varied size—ranging from one proposal to hundreds of proposals in a single review
  • Varied complexity—such as a single panel review, several concurrent panels or a series of multiple panels
  • Varied purposes—including research proposals, in-process research, completed research, scientific review assessments, poster sessions and abstracts
  • Varied locations—ORISE is flexible and can conduct peer reviews at almost any location

Managing the Information

PeerNet logoWith hundreds of independent reviewers making comments and assigning ratings to thousands of pages of proposal or program content, ORISE uses a Web-based application called PeerNet, which is short for Proposal Evaluation and Electronic Review Network. Accessible 24 hours a day, PeerNet provides electronic distribution of research proposals or products; collects reviewer comments and ratings; and reports the evaluations submitted by the reviewers.

The system has a proven record of meeting governmental cyber security requirements and helps ORISE manage reviewer confidentiality and sensitive information by providing a password-protected location for data to be entered and reviewed. PeerNet also helps review officials diligently monitor for conflict of interest and bias throughout the peer review process by giving them authorized read-only access to real-time data from the reviewers. PeerNet receives regular technical enhancements to allow optimum performance for reviewers.