It has recently been brought to our attention by members of the scientific community that a paper published in Climate
(ISSN 2225-1154, https://www.mdpi.com/journal/climate
) has raised some controversy regarding its originality, overall quality, and the scientific validity of the data presented. Moreover, two members have resigned from the Editorial Board, stating they are not willing to be associated with a journal where such articles are published. The paper they referred to was “Akasofu, S.-I. On the Present Halting of Global Warming. Climate
, 4–11”, published in the first issue of Climate
in May 2013 [1
], available online at: https://www.mdpi.com/2225-1154/1/1/4.
In response, we would like to first inform our readers of the publication process applied for papers submitted to this journal. All papers are peer-reviewed by at least two reviewers and very often by three. Within the publishing process, the in-house editorial staff at MDPI chooses reviewers with relevant publications or research interest in the topic of the submitted manuscript. We often ask the Editorial Board members to review papers, or ask those with relevant knowledge and expertise to suggest reviewer names. We sometimes also use the reviewers suggested by the authors, but we only do this after carefully checking the background of each potential reviewer and their publication record, as well as ensuring they have not recently collaborated with the authors which may be considered a conflict of interest. What we can disclose about the review process of the Akasofu paper, without violating the confidentiality of the review process, is that the manuscript was reviewed by three specialists affiliated to institutes or universities based in Europe and the USA. The reviewers were not from the same institution as the author and they have not co-authored papers with the author in the last five years. The paper submitted in January 2013 underwent minor revisions, and was finally accepted and published in May 2013.
We endeavor to ensure a high scientific standard for all papers published in this journal and will seek a closer involvement of the Editorial Board in the editorial process in the future.
We are now inviting comments for publication on the Akasofu paper. We also want to point out that comments on any articles published in Climate are always welcome. We hope that this opportunity for debate will be taken up by members of the scientific community, and that Climate can facilitate vibrant discussion around environmental climate topics that can often polarize opinion, but are of vital importance for stimulating cutting edge research.