Reviewers Guidelines

The APJHM invites the submission of research and conceptual manuscripts that are consistent with the mission of the APJHM and that facilitate communication and discussion of topical issues among practising managers, academics and policy makers.

Of particular interest are research and review papers that are rigorous in design, and provide new data to contribute to the health manager's understanding of an issue or management problem. Practice papers that aim to enhance the conceptual and/or coalface skills of managers will also be preferred.

All submitted research articles and notes, review articles and analysis of management practice articles go through the standard APJHM peer review process. Only original articles that have not been published or simultaneously submitted elsewhere are considered.

Importance of the Peer Review Process

The aim of the APJHM peer review process is to have experienced educators, researchers and managers assess the quality of the design, methodology, analysis and conclusions of submitted research and review articles. Obviously, the reputation of the Journal and its contribution to the body of health management knowledge depend on the quality of the articles it publishes. Our reviewers can assist us in advancing the reputation of the APJHM.

We ask reviewers to provide the Editor with two documents, viz, 1) a brief document containing a recommendation to the Editor re publication of the paper and any comments specifically for the Editor, and 2) a document containing comments which the reviewer is happy for the author(s) of the paper to read. It is APJHM policy that the peer review process be seen to be independent, objective, timely and developmental.

Independent and objective

The APJHM's policy of 'blind' review is designed to protect author and reviewer confidentiality and to ensure objectivity in the evaluation of the paper.

Timely and developmental

We ask our reviewers to provide timely, constructive and specific feedback that articulates the strengths and weaknesses of an article in a manner that assists and encourages the author to make the recommended changes and to make further submissions to the Journal.

Late reviews can mean a long wait for the author(s) which may provoke unnecessary anxiety.

Our aim in asking reviewers to provide developmental feedback is so that authors may learn from the review and so feel that they have gained benefit from the process. In making comments please:

  • Be specific
  • Be constructive (vis-à-vis judgemental)
  • Identify both the strengths and weaknesses (if any)
  • Make a contribution to the author's future writing
  • Be author-friendly
  • Be issue focused (vis-à-vis author focused).

What to look for in a research article

1. Quality, Propriety, Accuracy: Does the content and structure of the article demonstrate objectivity, utility, integrity and accuracy?

Does the article adhere with accepted professional and ethical standards as well as generally accepted standards of good taste? 

2. Reproducibility: Is the study reported in such a way that it could be repeated by qualified third parties? 
Reproducibility usually requires an article to have the following characteristics:

  • As clearly stated research question, issue or hypothesis.
  • Methods in sufficient detail to permit an interested reader to:
  • Comprehend what has been done to generate and analyse the data reported;
  • replicate the study if necessary; and
  • understand strengths and weaknesses of the methodology.
  • Clearly reported results showing 'warts and all'.
  • A clear discussion on the contribution of the research to the body of relevant knowledge and/or health management practice and justifiable conclusions.
  • Full and accurate referencing of all sources of information.

3.   Discussion section: In the Guidelines for Contributors, the APJHM emphasises the importance of the Discussion section and  recommends that authors use a structured approach guided by the following sub-headings:

  • Statement of principal findings;
  • Strengths and weaknesses of the study in relation to other studies, discussing particularly any differences in findings;
  • Meaning of the study (eg implications for health and aged care services managers or policy makers); and
  • Unanswered questions and future research.
  • The Academy of Management Journal (AMJ) published the following pointers on what to look for in a research article which you may find useful:
  • Theory: Does the paper test, create, or extend management theory in a meaningful way? Does the study inform or improve our understanding of prior theory? Are major concepts clearly defined?
  • Literature Review: Does the paper cite appropriate literature and provide proper credit to existing work on the topic? If not, can you offer important references that the author has missed? Does the paper contain an appropriate number of references (ie neither over-referencing nor under-referencing)?
  • Method: Do the sample, measures, methods, observations, procedures, and statistical analyses ensure internal and external validity? Are the statistical procedures used correctly and appropriately? Are the major assumptions of the statistical techniques reasonably well met (ie no major violations)?
  • Integration: Does the study provide a good test of the theory and hypotheses, or sufficient empirical grounds for building new theory? Is the method chosen - either qualitative or quantitative - appropriate for the research question and theory?
  • Contribution: Does the paper make a new and meaningful contribution to the management literature in terms of theory, empirical knowledge, and management practice? Is the topic important and interesting? Is the length of the paper commensurate with its contribution?
  • Citations: Have you given proper reference or citation to the original source of the comments that you write in the review if they are taken from others' work (or even your own)?
    Source: Academy of Management Journal: Reviewer Resources

Your feedback on how these guidelines could be improved would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you for your support of the APJHM.