This is part two in Danya’s series on the Peer Review Process.
When we conduct a peer review, we’re basically trying to determine if we would come to the same conclusions as the author(s) if we did the work ourselves. In reviewing documentation (e.g. environment assessment reports) we typically ask the following questions:
- Is the purpose of the work clearly stated and are all issues encompassed through the stated purpose?
- Is the methodology sound enough to permit the peer reviewer’s objective review of the issues, data and facts?
- Are relevant data and facts clearly and consistently used in the reports/ study?
- Are certainties and uncertainties of the studies openly and objectively stated?
- Can the we trust the data?
- Are the conclusions supported by the data and research undertaken?
- If we examined the data would it reach the same conclusions?
- Are there gaps arising from our examination of the issues?
My next entry will focus on what the social sciences can bring to the peer review process.
Danya Al-Haydari is an Environmental Planner at Hardy Stevenson and Associates Limited, where she specializes in public consultation, environmental assessment and energy policy. She has coordinated work for the Port Hope and Port Granby Projects, and conducted research on the Port Hope Area Initiative’s Property Value Protection Program. Most recently, she co-authored a paper for the Nuclear Waste Management Organization on community well-being in nuclear host communities. Danya is a member of the Canadian Nuclear Societyand Women in Nuclear Canada.