Source TechCrunch – This guest post was written by Richard Price, founder and CEO of Academia.edu — a site that serves as a platform for academics to share their research papers and to interact with each other.
Many academics are excited about the future of instant distribution of research. Right now the time lag between finishing a paper, and the relevant worldwide research community seeing it, is between 6 months and 2 years. This is because during that time, the paper is being peer reviewed, and peer review takes an incredibly long time. 2 years is roughly how long it used to take to send a letter abroad 300 years ago.
Many platforms are springing up which enable research distribution to be instant, so that the time lag between finishing a paper, and everyone in the relevant research community worldwide seeing it, is measured in hours and days, rather than months and years. Some of the strong platforms areAcademia.edu, arXiv, Mendeley, ResearchGate and SSRN.
What about peer review?
One question many academics have is: in a future where research is distributed instantly, what happens to peer review? Will this be a world where junk gets out, and there is no way to distinguish between good and bad research?
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