Discovery Stack/Discovery Curator Pilot

The Discovery Stack/Discovery Curator (DSDC) Pilot will evaluate an estimated 50-100 immunology pre-prints with “peer improvement review” – reframing peer review as an opportunity to make papers better – while also quantifying a paper’s quality and impact through a transparent scoring system.

In progress
  |  Updated: 28 May 2024

Solving for Science

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Project Goals

The ultimate goal is to implement a new reviewing paradigm as part of a community-led, journal-free space, where science will be evaluated and curated by and for scientists. We envision a publishing model of peer reviewed preprints for which Quality (Q) and Impact (I) scores are initially assigned by a refined process of ‘Peer Improvement’ and can evolve by crowd-sourcing reviewer participation over time. Unlike fixing the evaluative metrics of a research article to the impact factor of a journal in any given moment – a relationship that has been shown to have nearly zero correlation – each article will be individually subjected to the test of time, in near real-time.


The DS/DC pilot experiment is designed to test the following hypotheses:

  1. Community-organized, journal-independent peer review of preprints can expedite the time from preprint submission to a peer-reviewed metric that allows for scientific curation by tying ourselves more tightly to the ownership and curation of our science.
  2. We will be better able to assess the quality of our science (“Q” score), and its importance/impact (“I” score), if we work on each assessment separately and in sequence because a community-based measure of the quality of a study’s experimental designs, execution, and conclusions is an essential foundation for the assessment of its impact.
  3. We as a community can help authors improve the quality of their science by re-orienting the review process to a line-edit workflow that reminds us we are ultimately seeking to help authors ensure that statements made about a set of data are correct.
  4. Adopting a peer-improvement mindset (by both reviewer and authors) as the guiding principle for review can shift the author-reviewer relationship from one of potential tension and conflict-of-interest to one of collaboration that results in a more equitable system, better product, and happier researcher mindset about the publication process, the product, and our peers.
  5. Peer review of preprints by the DS/DC method would be more transparent and eliminate questionable decisions by professional editors, including activist editors whose efforts  to ‘improve’ the quality of papers in their journals is of questionable value relative to the detrimental impact on the pace of scientific progress.

In addition, the quality of non-anonymous reviewer contributions to scientific curation will be evaluated by the community to help ensure a more collaborative and collegial process for both authors and reviewers.

What's Needed

There is a pilot team in place, however there is an open invitation for others to join the experiment at this stage; more informational be found in the DSDC participation guide.