Communications of the Association for Information Systems


The paper presents the report of a panel that debated the review process in the information systems (IS) discipline at ICIS 2017 in Seoul, Korea. The panel asked the fundamental question of whether we need to rethink the way we review papers in the discipline. The panelists partnered with the audience to explore some reviewing limitations in IS today and the ways that reviewing in the discipline might change to address some of its difficulties. We first report key concerns with modern reviewing. We then present arguments for and against three proposals (i.e., paying for reviews, mandatory reviews, and open reviews) and a panel audience vote on the issues. We neither advocate for nor condemn these solutions but rather use them to illustrate what we believe represent the core underlying issues with reviewing in the IS discipline. Specifically, we believe the key stumbling blocks to effectively improving our review process include 1) a lack of empirical data on actual practice, 2) a lack of clear goals, and 3) an ignorance of the possible solutions to the review dilemma that the wider literature articulates.