CCL: Suggestion

 Sent to CCL by: "Alavi, Saman" [Saman.Alavi+*]
 Dear Sergio,
 Some very good conversations have come up from this thread.
 I think its somewhat naive to expect that science, which is after all a human
 endeavor, would be any different from other fields of human activity. Can we
 point out any field of human activity which is not influenced by egos, power
 imbalances, vested interests, etc.? At least science has the advantage that its
 propositions have to be falsifiable by design, so are not absolute declarations.
 Also, scientific results must be verifiable regardless of location, prestige of
 lab, etc. They are not one-shot miracles observed by a select few. Can we say
 art, religion, or business hold up to these standards?
 The peer review system does at times become adversarial, which is unfortunate,
 but can anyone suggest a working model that would do things differently and
 better? Of course, the peer review system can be improved and reformed, for
 example, by editors automatically rejecting reviews which attack the authors
 rather than criticize a work. Many other excellent suggestions have been
 mentioned in this thread. Note that the anonymous peer review system is also
 there to protect a junior reviewer from the "expert" author (who may
 be wrong in this case). Would any junior reviewer want to be named as the person
 who rejected a work by a well-known scientist at a prestigious institution who
 is perhaps chair of a national granting committee? It would be great if everyone
 reached a level of maturity as to be able to accept criticism from others,
 regardless of their status. If we see the bickering and petty quarrels between
 some of the greatest minds of science, such as Newton and Hooke, its no surprise
 that these things go on now. Being a scientist is not a guard against the vices
 of human nature... :-)
 Hopefully you will continue in science and be involved in reviewing manuscripts.
 If your field involves physics, quantum mechanics, relativity, you will receive
 tens of manuscripts trying to prove Einstein was wrong about relativity, to
 propose a machine which can generate work out of nothing, and prove that the
 position and momentum  of electrons can indeed be simultaneously determined. How
 much time should the science community have to spend on these
 "results". I do not know if having more patience with this type of
 "science" is beneficial.
 In the end, its the beauty of understanding nature which makes us all scientist.
 Its always good to keep this in mind when dealing with these other inevitable
 Best regards,
 Saman Alavi
 > From:*
 [*] On Behalf Of Sergio Manzetti [owner-chemistry+*]
 Sent: August 19, 2012 1:36 PM
 To: Alavi, Saman
 Subject: CCL: Suggestion
 Let more women in science, particularly the heavy sciences such as QM, Particle
 Physics and theoretical astrophysics. Shift the subject away from peer-review
 issues and problems in dissemination, this has to do with traditions that are
 male-made and derive from the 12th century and need to be rounded and merged
 with new ways of thinking, with a maintenance of the strict demands of
 correctness, precision and collective evaluation of scientific works. Also,
 leave the innovators alone and let students and young newcomers test their
 "stupid" theories not matter how stupid they sound. They need to try.