Reviewer Guidelines

Central Asia and the Caucasus relies on the expertise and dedication of its reviewers to maintain high standards of quality and integrity in published research. These comprehensive guidelines are designed to assist reviewers in performing their duties effectively and ensuring a consistent and rigorous review process.

1. Reviewer Responsibilities


  • Response Time: Reviewers should respond to an invitation to review within one week, indicating their availability and interest.
  • Review Deadline: Reviews should be completed within four weeks of agreeing to review. If more time is needed, reviewers should inform the editorial office as soon as possible.


  • Privacy: Reviewers must treat the manuscript as a confidential document. It should not be shared with others or discussed outside the review process.
  • Anonymity: Central Asia and the Caucasus follows a double-blind review process. Reviewers should avoid revealing their identity to authors directly or indirectly.

Objectivity and Fairness:

  • Unbiased Evaluation: Reviews should be conducted objectively, with comments focused on the content and quality of the manuscript, without personal bias or favoritism.
  • Constructive Feedback: Provide clear, constructive, and detailed feedback to help authors improve their manuscript. Criticism should be professional and courteous.

2. Review Criteria


  • Novel Contribution: Assess whether the manuscript presents original research and contributes new knowledge or insights to the fields of social sciences, political science, international relations, development, and ocean engineering.


  • Impact: Evaluate the importance and potential impact of the research findings on these fields.

Methodological Rigor:

  • Sound Methods: Examine the study design, methodology, data collection, and analysis to ensure they are appropriate, robust, and well-executed.
  • Reproducibility: Check if the methods are described in enough detail to allow replication of the study by other researchers.

Ethical Standards:

  • Ethical Compliance: Ensure that the research adheres to ethical guidelines, including obtaining necessary approvals and informed consent from participants.

Clarity and Presentation:

  • Writing Quality: Evaluate the clarity, coherence, and readability of the manuscript. Ensure that the arguments are well-structured and logically presented.
  • Figures and Tables: Assess the quality and appropriateness of figures, tables, and other supplementary materials.


  • Scope: Determine if the manuscript falls within the scope of Central Asia and the Caucasus and addresses topics relevant to the journal’s focus areas.

3. Review Process

Initial Assessment:

  • Fit for Journal: Assess whether the manuscript fits the scope and standards of Central Asia and the Caucasus.
  • Preliminary Recommendation: Provide a brief initial recommendation on whether the manuscript should be considered for peer review.

Detailed Review:

  • Major and Minor Points: Clearly distinguish between major issues that need to be addressed before publication and minor points that could improve the manuscript.
  • Detailed Comments: Provide specific comments on each section of the manuscript, including the abstract, introduction, methods, results, discussion, and references.


  • Decision Options: Reviewers can recommend one of the following:
    • Accept: The manuscript is ready for publication with minor or no revisions.
    • Minor Revisions: The manuscript requires minor changes before it can be accepted.
    • Major Revisions: The manuscript needs significant changes before it can be reconsidered.
    • Reject: The manuscript is not suitable for publication in Central Asia and the Caucasus.

Confidential Comments to the Editor:

  • Private Feedback: Provide any confidential comments to the editor regarding the manuscript, such as ethical concerns or conflicts of interest.

4. Ethical Considerations

Conflict of Interest:

  • Disclosure: Reviewers must disclose any potential conflicts of interest (financial, personal, or professional) that could affect their impartiality.
  • Recusal: If a conflict of interest exists, reviewers should decline the review invitation.

Plagiarism and Misconduct:

  • Detection: Be vigilant for signs of plagiarism, data fabrication, or other research misconduct. Report any suspicions to the editorial office.
  • Integrity: Ensure that the manuscript adheres to ethical research standards.

5. Reviewing Process Workflow

  1. Invitation: Reviewers receive an invitation to review a manuscript, including the abstract and any relevant details.
  2. Acceptance: Reviewers accept or decline the invitation within one week.
  3. Reviewing: Reviewers complete their review within four weeks, using the provided review form to structure their feedback.
  4. Submission: Reviewers submit their detailed report and recommendation through the journal’s online submission system.
  5. Editorial Decision: The editor considers the reviewers’ reports and makes a final decision on the manuscript.

6. Support and Resources for Reviewers


  • Reviewer Training: Access to online training modules and resources to help reviewers improve their reviewing skills.
  • Reviewer Handbook: A comprehensive handbook with detailed instructions and best practices for conducting reviews.


  • Acknowledgment: Reviewers who consistently provide high-quality reviews are acknowledged in an annual list published by the journal.
  • Certificates: Reviewers can request certificates of recognition for their contributions to the journal.


  • Reviewer Feedback: Reviewers receive feedback on their reviews to help them improve and understand the impact of their contributions.

By adhering to these comprehensive guidelines, reviewers for Central Asia and the Caucasus play a crucial role in maintaining the quality and integrity of the journal, ensuring that published research meets the highest standards of academic excellence.