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Reputable vs. Disreputable Publishers
Increasingly, scholars around the world are asked to publish their research findings in order to keep their jobs, so called “publish or perish.” This increases the number of authors seeking journals and publishing companies. As a result, some disreputable companies have stepped into the publishing field, hoping to cash in on scholars eager to publish.
Disreputable publishers use a variety of business models to support themselves, but they all suffer from very poor quality content.
If you receive a solicitation to publish in a journal or with a publisher you aren’t familiar with, seek some additional information (or let a librarian do it for you):
Who is on the editorial board? Do they have good reputations in the field?
- Red flags: No affiliations listed for board members, too many board members who don’t list this service on their CV
Where is the journal indexed?
- High quality publications will be listed in several databases (e.g. Scopus, Ebsco, etc.). Librarians can find out where a publication is indexed using our edition of Ulrich’s Guide to Periodicals (Print, at the reference desk).
What other research have they published?
- Red flags: obviously poor quality content, off topic content.
Is the journal associated with a scholarly society?
- Look up the organization to make sure the connection is real.
Note: Many high quality journals charge author fees, although such fees are less common among reputable monograph publishers.