Peer reviews

Our members asked for the flexibility to register content for the reviews and discussions of scholarly content which they publish, so we’ve extended our infrastructure to support members who post them. We support a whole host of outputs made publicly available from the peer review history, as they vary greatly based on journal. This may include referee reports, decision letter, and author response. The overall set may include outputs from the initial submission only or those from all subsequent rounds of revisions. We also allow members to register content made up of discussions surrounding a journal article after it was published (e.g. post-publication reviews).

The following organizations consulted with us on the design and/or development of the peer review service:

  • Publons
  • PeerJ
  • F1000 Research
  • eLife
  • BioMedCentral
  • BMJ
  • Copernicus
  • EMBO
  • Nature Communications


Our custom support for peer reviews ensures that links to these documents persist over time; the metadata provides relevant information about the reviews whether they were part of peer review or post-publication; these discussions are connected to the full history of the shared research results; contributors are given credit for their work; and the citation record is clear and up-to-date. This metadata may also support enrichment of scholarly discussion, reviewer accountability, publishing transparency, analysis or research on peer reviews, etc.

Specifically, registering peer reviews with us enables features such as:

  • Persistent identifiers for peer review to ensure successful links to the scholarly record over the course of time via the DOI resolver.
  • Content registration for peer reviews with custom metadata that capture the process surrounding the review
  • Links to the journal articles which were reviewed
  • Auto-update of ORCID records to ensure that peer review contributors get credit for their work.
  • Discoverability: we make the metadata available for machine and human access, across multiple interfaces (e.g. REST API, OAI-PMH, and Search).

Obligations & limitations

Members depositing peer review content need to make sure they:

  1. Register content using peer review metadata
  2. All reviews must include relations metadata linking the review with the item being reviewed. (relation type: isReviewOf).

Other considerations:

  • The peer review is treated as one item only without components for its constituent parts.
  • Crossmark is not currently supported for peer reviews
  • We currently only support peer reviews for journal articles.

Membership & fees

Peer review posters who would like to use our registration service should apply to join as a member (annual fee starting at $275). Membership of Crossref can be layered, you could join directly, or under a Sponsor who handles your technical and/or financial administration. We have a dedicated fee structure for peer reviews which allows for an unlimited number of reviews per associated article, combined in a single fee. Please see our fees page for more information.

Are you an existing Crossref member who wants to start linking up reviews? Let’s talk about getting started or migrating any existing mis-labelled content over to the dedicated peer review deposit schema. If you’re not yet a member but want to register your reviews so they are included within Crossref infrastructure service, please contact our membership specialist so we can answer any questions and get you set up.

For full instructions and XML examples please visit our support article where you can also raise a ticket for any questions.

Page owner: Rachael Lammey   |   Last updated 2021-April-15