Many aspects of modern peer review have not changed from its inception in the 18th century despite drastic changes in the scientific community. Specifically, contrary to the early days of peer review, it has become a significant challenge to identify experts who can effectively review the more and more specialised fields of science.
The problem is exacerbated by the ever-rising number of researchers (having grown by 15% between 2014 and 2018 according to a UNESCO report), also seen through the staggering increase of publications and proposals (doubling every 14 years in astronomy). Some say that peer review has not adequately innovated as technology has advanced and the dissemination of publications has surged, creating a space for stagnant and biased reviews. ESO is organising a workshop to discuss these issues.
The workshop will take place at the ESO Headquarters in Garching (Germany) from February 6 to 10, 2023. In the workshop, we aim at bringing together experts from a large number of organisations and facilities (ESO, ESA, ALMA, STScI, NASA, NOIRLab) to discuss the state of peer review and the ways forward for a digital and interconnected science community. The workshop will be divided into 4 main sessions (Peer review at large; Methodologies; Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in peer review; and Concrete examples) and it will include ample time for discussion.