VoxEU Column COVID-19 Frontiers of economic research

Announcement: Covid Economics and subsequent submission to journals

CEPR’s new vehicle for rapidly vetting and disseminating economic research on Covid-related issues is thriving – attracting something like six papers per day with about 40% passing the rapid, up-down vetting process. From its founding, the idea was that papers issued in Covid Economics would be submitted to professional journals after revision. Leading journals in the profession – including AER, JPE, REStud, and QJE – have accepted that appearing in Covid Economics does not constitute publication but rather is viewed as a posting in a working paper series. 

At the end of March CEPR launched a new online vehicle, Covid Economics, Vetted and Real-Time Papers. Inspired by practices that are common in natural sciences, Covid Economics disseminates emerging economic research on the Covid-19 epidemic. The papers are vetted by editors for quality and relevance; the aim is to collate some of the best economic research on Covid-19 so that it might inform the academic and policy debate in an acute crisis when results have to circulate fast. 

Every day, an average of six papers is submitted and immediately sent for vetting to one member of the editorial board. The reviewer is asked to respond within 48 hours. Most respond within 24 hours, many within half a day. The papers are vetted for quality and relevance on an accept/reject basis. Once it is accepted, a paper appears online a few days afterwards. The editorial board currently includes 45 members who jointly cover all areas of specialisation in economics. All members are leading scholars in their respective fields.

As of 7 May, 98 papers have been featured in 15 issues, collecting five to eight papers each. The proportion of accepted papers is 44%. Google Citations has already started to pick up citations to papers in Covid Economics, just as it does with working paper series. 

From the start, our intention has been that papers issued in Covid Economics can be submitted, once revised, to professional journals. In effect, we treat them as discussion papers whose copyrights rest with the authors, which has been explicitly stated from Issue 13 onwards on the front page of each paper. Prompted by many queries, we have contacted a number of journals and asked what their policy would be. The list below indicates the responses that we have received to date. 

Not all journals have responded as yet; they will be added to this list as soon as we hear from them. We also welcome enquiries from other professional journals in economics regarding inclusion on this list, which will be kept up to date and reported in future issues; please email [email protected]

Journals that welcome submissions

American Economic Review 
American Economic Review, Applied Economics
American Economic Review, Insights
American Economic Review, Economic Policy 
American Economic Review, Macroeconomics  
American Economic Review, Microeconomics 
Economic Journal
Journal of Development Economics
Journal of Econometrics*
Journal of Economic Growth
Journal of Economic Theory
Journal of the European Economic Association*
Journal of Finance
Journal of Financial Economics
Journal of International Economics
Journal of Labor Economics*
Journal of Monetary Economics
Journal of Political Economy
Journal of Population Economics
Quarterly Journal of Economics*
Review of Economics and Statistics
Review of Economic Studies*
Review of Financial Studies

(*) Must be a significantly revised and extended version of the paper featured in Covid Economics

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