Wednesday, July 10, 2013

a pre-emptive letter of rejection from one of my favorite journals, Games and Economic Behavior

Along with what I presume are very many other people, I recently received this email from the editors of Games and Economic Behavior (GEB). The first part of the email (reproduced below) reads a lot like the rejection letters I get, and says that only papers of very broad general interest can be accepted (and not papers that are of interest to only some readers..).  But in this case the letter is being sent to people before they submit a paper. (The second part of the email sensibly encourages editors and referees to reject things quickly, at least, and use early desk rejections, so that people will still be willing to submit to a journal that is likely to reject their paper...)

"Dear GEB colleagues,

"We are writing to update you on the state of the journal, remind you of GEB's objective, ask for your help, and thank you for your contributions.

"Journals that publish papers in game theory
Currently, there are six journals devoted entirely to publishing game theory papers:
1. Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier
2. International Journal of Game Theory, Springer
3. International Game Theory Review, World Scientific
4. International Journal of Mathematics, Game Theory and Algebra, Nova Publishers
5. Journal of Game Theory, Scientific & Academic Publishing - Open Access (Peer Review) 
6. Games, MDPI - Open Access (Peer Review) 

"In addition, most economic theory journals publish game theory papers and there is a fast growing number of game theory papers published in computer science and operations research journals. For example, one of the four sections of Mathematics of Operations Research is devoted entirely to game theory and ACM Transactions on Economics and Computation is heavily concentrated on game theory. 

"The unique role of GEB
The stated goal of GEB is to "facilitate cross-fertilization between theories and applications of game theoretic reasoning." With the expansion of game theory into a variety of subjects beyond economics (computer science, operations research and management, biology, sociology, psychology, linguistics, philosophy), it is important to communicate and coordinate game-theoretic research across these fields. To be effective in this mission, it is important to restrict publications in GEB to papers that are of general game theoretic interest (in a broad sense) and not to publish papers that are of interest only to narrow groups, even if they are high quality. With the current rate of more than 700 new submissions a year, this means that GEB has to maintain a high rate of rejection. The current rate of rejection is approximately five out of six newly submitted papers."

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