Re: Testable change
Posted by: cbw
Date: 30 June 2013 20:40
Actually, that's a funny proposal. Quite unusual - but I like it :-)
"Re" the question about "first submissions". There is a quite obvious solution: Give everybody some credit to begin with . Let's say everybody gets 100 credits as a freshman. Every submission to proc/IACR costs 20 credits (in total - to be split among the authors), every review earns 10 credits for a good review, 5 credits for a so-so review and 0 credits for a bad review. You are blocked after 3 bad reviews in a row (meaning there is some time in between these reviews). Being in a PC earns 35 credits, plus 2 credits for each good sub-review. If it was a self-review, the rules from above apply. So everybody can submit 5 papers without having reviewed anything so far. As soon as you are in a PC, you earn so much credits that you don't really have to worry about submitting papers anymore. Everybody else who behaves "nicely" get enough credits to have the right to submit.
Problem: How do people get requests for reviews? I got my first reviews from my supervisor (Bart Preneel) - and it took three years before somebody else from the community contacted me. So when I am a lonely Ph.D. student somewhere in the wild, wild world, I can submit 5 papers and that's it as nobody will request reviews from me early enough.
Hence, if we were to adopt this system, we would need a mechanism that people who already submitted papers (and got good marks - maybe not "accept", but certainly something better than always "strong reject") will get requests for reviews. It's certainly manageable, but does introduce some more constraints for the editors.
All in all, I didn't make up my mind yet. It's certainly a completely different proposal to deal with the review-problem (turn authors into reviewers :-) ) but does have subtle points to it that need to be addressed first.
It could work on a large scale (e.g. proc/IACR), but I do not think that it can be tested with only one conference.
 The idea is borrowed from an SF novel about a society where "Social Darwinism" was introduced: Everybody can only consume as much money for health care or "lethal situations" as s/he previously earned. No money can be transferred between people, including spouses, parents <-> children, .... Obvious problem are babies who would die rather quickly without health care. In the novel, they get 500 credits upfront. Enough for normal babies; a problem for babies that are born with diseases. Frightening idea - but a very good novel :-) Couldn't find author / title back though :-(
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 30-Jun-2013 20:43 by cbw.