Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Global Justice and Human Rights Journal Review (GJHR Journal Review)?

It is a free, open-access, online peer-reviewed journal specializing in publishing short commentaries that respond to or criticize recent publications on topics related to global justice and human rights in major journals or university presses. GJHR Journal Review will do this in a fast manner to facilitate a more efficient and effective dialogue amongst academics.

Certain sorts of insights currently fall through the cracks of extant scholarly venues; often an article will have a small problem contained therein, or will make assumptions that have interesting implications, but which are tangential to many people’s research agendas. Drawing attention to these would be useful, but would not warrant the time or energy needed for writing a traditional peer-reviewed publication. Furthermore, the length of time that peer review and publication generally takes reduces the attractiveness of such projects, since by the time the manuscript finally gets published, the debate may have moved past the point where a smaller commentary would have been useful. GJHR Journal Review offers the ability to publish these pieces in a manner that is recognized and peer-reviewed in a way that facilitates relatively immediate dialogue (like a blog).

How Does it Work?

The GJHR Journal Review uses a model that has been honed by the Business Ethics Journal Review over nearly a decade of publishing. We publish short commentaries (~1000-2000 words) on recent publications in global justice and human rights (published within the past three years). Submitted manuscripts are subject to a desk review by the editors and then put through a double-blind peer review process. However, our review process is streamlined: the process includes only one reviewer, and the reviewer can only give one of three recommendations: accept as is, accept with minor revisions, or reject. The Editors then make a final decision, based in part on the reviewer’s advice. There is no “revise and resubmit” option, and reviewers are asked to only give brief comments, in order to expedite the review process. Once accepted and copy-edited, a manuscript will be typeset, transferred to high resolution PDF, assigned a DOI, and posted online on the journal website (further expediting the process).

Accepted manuscripts will typically be published and available to the public within roughly 45 days of submission! Once published, the author of the original criticized publications (the “target author”), is invited to write a response of similar length (subject only to desk review). Thus, the journal provides an opportunity to engage in meaningful scholarly dialogue in a more timely manner than is currently offered by traditional academic journals.

What is considered global justice and human rights?

We understand global approaches as ones that are not based on the Westphalian distinction between domestic and international affairs. Global approaches to justice and human rights are interested in the ways in which the study of these issues cut across national borders. 

We are interested in reviews of scholarly publications that discuss global justice and human rights from empirical, theoretical, or normative perspectives. We encourage reviews that bring together empirical and theoretical perspectives by, for example, challenging a theoretical piece with empirical evidence or investigating the philosophical or theoretical presuppositions of an empirical study. 

We are interested in questions of justice mainly as they refer to the laws, rules, norms, and causal mechanisms that account for or explain the distribution of goods, including the ways in which they interact with democratic norms.

We are interested in questions of human rights that focus on the transnational constellations of actors, forces, and institutions that promote or inhibit change in the global rights landscape. 

I am a junior scholar — shouldn’t I spend my time getting published in a major journal?

The Journal Review model allows you to write a short piece, slightly tangential to your project but still interesting, on something you’re reading that you could write in a day or two, without taking too much time off your project, and spin it into a publication, which stimulates a discussion and debate that otherwise would not be able to happen. Experience from the Business Ethics Journal Review indicates that those who submit to the journal don’t see it as a hindrance or distraction, but rather as a way to develop and improve their research, often leading to more traditional publications down the road. Furthermore, evidence seems to suggest that the review articles have an impact on the field; the Business Ethics Journal Review, after only its 4th year, has some articles that have been cited dozens of times in traditional journal articles and books.

I am a senior scholar — why would I want to publish in this journal?

Aside from participating in a forum that engenders high-quality scholarly conversation among global justice and human rights scholars, submitting a review piece to this journal can be used to put a spotlight on interesting and promising work done by junior scholars, and to help in directing it in a productive way. The junior scholar will benefit from having their work reviewed in this journal, which is an indication of impact and scholarly attention, and by getting the opportunity to reply to the review. 

How is this different from a book review?

The GJHR Journal Review publishes commentaries that offer a substantive critical engagement with the argument of another piece. While commentaries should summarize the argument of the piece to which they respond accurately, its main purpose should be to generate discussion on a particular aspect of the argument and not to offer an overall review. Also, this journal accepts critical engagements with both articles and books.

How anonymous reviewers are asked to evaluate the submissions?

We ask the reviewers to address two questions. The first is whether the commentary captures the argument of the original piece in an accurate way. The second is whether they would be interested to read how the author of the original piece responds to the commentary, that is, whether the argument presented in the commentary offers a novel and interesting engagement with the piece. 

Are there any costs involved?

No. There are no costs for publishing in the journal, and the electronically published article will be available on the journal’s website for free.