In academic publishing, a preprint is a version of a scholarly or scientific paper that precedes formal peer review and publication in a peer-reviewed scholarly or scientific journal. The preprint may be available, often as a non-typeset version available free, before and/or after a paper is published in a journal.


Publication of manuscripts in a peer-reviewed journal often takes weeks, months or even years from the time of initial submission, owing to the time required by editors and reviewers to evaluate and critique manuscripts, and the time required by authors to address critiques. The need to quickly circulate current results within a scholarly community has led researchers to distribute documents known as preprints, which are manuscripts that have yet to undergo peer review. They may be considered as grey literature. The immediate distribution of preprints allows authors to receive early feedback from their peers, which may be helpful in revising and preparing articles for submission.[1]

Since 1991, preprints have increasingly been distributed electronically on the Internet, rather than as paper copies. This has given rise to massive preprint databases such as and to institutional repositories.

In some journals, posting preprints may disqualify the research from submission for publication due to the Ingelfinger Rule. The majority of publishers however do allow work to be published to preprint servers before submission while others do not and are evaluated on a case-by-case basis.[2]

In 2016, several new preprint servers were proposed by Crossref, Centre for Open Science and ASAPbio.[3][4][5]

In January 2017, the Medical Research Council announced that they will now be actively supporting preprints with effect from April 2017.[6] Also in January 2017, Wellcome Trust stated that they will now accept preprints in grant applications.[7] In February 2017, a coalition of scientists and biomedical funding bodies including the National Institutes of Health, the Medical Research Council and the Wellcome Trust launched a proposal for a central site for life-sciences preprints.[8][9][10] In February 2017, SciELO announced plans to set up a preprints server – SciELO Preprints.[11] In March 2017, the National Institutes for Health issued a new policy encouraging research preprint submissions.[12][13] In April 2017, Center for Open Science announced that it will be launching six new preprint archives.[14]

Stages of printing

While a preprint is an article that has not yet undergone peer review, a postprint is an article which has been peer reviewed in preparation for publication in a journal. Both the preprint and postprint may differ from the final published version of an article. Preprints and postprints together are referred to as e-prints or eprints.[15]

The word reprint refers to hard copies of papers that have already been published; reprints can be produced by the journal publisher, but can also be generated from digital versions (for example, from an electronic database of peer-reviewed journals), or from eprints self-archived by their authors in their institutional repositories.

Tenure and promotion

In academia, preprints are not likely to be weighed heavily when a scholar is evaluated for tenure or promotion, unless the preprint becomes the basis for a peer-reviewed publication.[16]

Servers by field


Authorea was launched in 2012 as a collaborative writing platform used by researchers to write, cite, collaborate, host and post their articles. The site is the only preprint server that displays manuscripts as HTML with interactive figures and hosted data.[17]

PeerJ PrePrints is a free preprint server operated by PeerJ. Articles submitted undergo a basic screening process but are not peer-reviewed. Commenting is allowed by any registered user, and download and pageview data are supplied. All articles are published with a CC-BY license. As of September 2016, 2,439 articles have been made available.[18] Zenodo is a repository for research data that has been used also as preprint repository, because it offers document preview and a DOI number for the submitted document. MDPI launched an additional preprint server in 2016.[19][20]

Library and information science

There are two servers for LIS and allied fields: Eprints in Library and Information Science (e-LIS) and the LIS Scholarship Archive (LISSA). e-LIS was launched in 2003, and is an international open access repository for academic papers in Library and Information Science (LIS), run by volunteers. LISSA was launched in 2017 as an open access repository for all materials created by those in LIS and allied fields, including work that happens outside the traditional realms of academia, such as oral histories, community works, code, data, and manuscripts. It is run by members of the library and archives community, and their technology partner, the Center for Open Science, using the Open Science Framework to host materials.

Physical sciences

The e-print archive arXiv (pronounced "archive") is one of the best-known preprint servers. It was created by Paul Ginsparg in 1991 at Los Alamos National Laboratory for the purpose of distributing theoretical high-energy physics preprints.[21] In 2001, moved to Cornell University and now encompasses the fields of physics, mathematics, computer science, quantitative biology, quantitative finance, statistics. Within the field of high-energy physics, the posting of preprints on arXiv is so common that many peer-reviewed journals allow submission of papers from arXiv directly, using the arXiv e-print number.

In some branches of physics, the arXiv database may serve as a focal point for the many criticisms made of the peer review process and peer-reviewed journals. In his column in Physics Today, April 1992, David Mermin described Ginsparg's creation as potentially "string theory's greatest contribution to science". About 8,000 preprints per month are uploaded to arXiv as of 2016.[22]

An engineering preprint server, engrXiv, was launched in 2016 by the Center for Open Science and administrated by the University of Wisconsin–Stout.[23] Whilst under development, it used a temporary email deposit system.[24] As of April 2017, the official home for engrXiv went live after the web interface was launched in December 2016.[25]

The server viXra was established in 2009 for authors who are excluded from and other repositories due to submission filtering.[26]

Computer science

The ability to distribute manuscripts as preprints has had a great impact on computer science, particularly in the way that scientific research is disseminated in that field (see CiteSeer). The open access movement has tended to focus on distributed institutional collections of research, global harvesting, and aggregation through search engines and gateways such as OAIster, rather than a global discipline base such as arXiv. E-prints can now refer to any electronic form of a scholarly or scientific publication, including journal articles, conference papers, research theses or dissertations, because these usually are found in multidisciplinary collections, called open access repositories, or eprints archives.[27]

Biological and chemical sciences

The biological sciences have lagged behind the physical sciences in their use of preprints. Based on the success of arXiv, bioRxiv was introduced in 2013, operated by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory,[28][29] Therapoid Preprint was launched in 2017 by Open Therapeutics,[30] and ChemRxiv was announced in 2016 hosted by the American Chemical Society.[31] In 2017, it was confirmed that ChemRxiv will be powered by figshare.[32] Articles undergo basic screening for offensive and/or non-scientific content but do not undergo a peer review process.[33] In early 2019, the Beilstein-Institut announced their intention to provide authors intending to submit to the Beilstein Journals the option to publish a preprint version of their manuscript to the Beilstein Archives with a single click. Preprints published in the Beilstein Archives will be limited to the fields in which the Beilstein Journals covers, namely organic chemistry and nanotechnology.[34]

Between 2007–2012 Nature Publishing Group ran their own preprint server, Nature Precedings. It hosted manuscripts, posters, and unpublished observations.

ASAPbio (Accelerating Science and Publication in biology) is "a scientist-driven initiative to promote innovation and transparency in life sciences communication" through the use of preprints.[35]

Social science and humanities

One of the earlier preprint servers is PhilSci-Archive, launched in 2001 for all subfields of Philosophy of Science, hosted by the University Library System at the University of Pittsburgh.[36]

An open archive of the social sciences. SocArXiv was formed in July 2016 by a group of sociologists, members of the academic library community, and their technology partner, the Center for Open Science, using the Open Science Framework. It is administratively housed at the University of Maryland and directed by Philip Cohen.[37] SocArXiv officially launched in December 2016.[38][39] Frequently asked questions about SocArXiv.[40]

PsyArXiv is a similar preprint service for the psychological sciences which launched in 2016 by the Society for the Improvement of Psychological Science and the Center for Open Science.[41][42][43]

The Social Science Research Network is a repository for both working papers and accepted papers, which shows download and citation data within the site for each stored paper. In May 2016, SSRN was acquired by Elsevier.[44]

Agriculture and allied sciences

Under construction at the end of 2016 is an Agriculture preprint repository AgriXiv which will be launched with support from Open Science Framework.[45][46] AgrXiv was pre-launched in early February 2017 on a staging server on GitHub[47][48] and then formally launched later on 14th February 2017 by the Open Access India, community of practice advocating Open Access in India.[49][50]


Under construction in December 2016 and due to launch in early 2017 is PaleorXiv which will be launched with support from Open Science Framework.[51][52][53] As of May 2017, PaleorXiv is now open for submissions.[54][55] The first submissions appeared online in August 2017.[56]


Under construction in April 2017 is SportRxiv, a preprint archiving service for the sport, exercise, and rehabilitation sciences which was launched in August 2017 with support from Open Science Framework.[57][58][59][60][61][62]


The service LawArXiv 'Legal Scholarship in the Open' was announced in May 2017.[63][64][65][66]

Theses and dissertations

Launched in August 2017 is Thesis Commons, a preprint service for free open publication of student theses and dissertations supported by Open Science Framework.[67]


JMIR Preprints is a preprint server that evolved from JMIR Publications' experiments in open peer-review. It contains primarily submitted manuscripts which are currently under open peer-review.[68]

MedArXiv is a preprint service for the medicine and health sciences which is under development with support from Open Science Framework. It was announced in September 2017 by Harlan Krumholz at American Medical Association's Eighth International Congress on Peer Review and Scientific Publication.[69][70][71]

Geoscience and Earthsciences

Two preprint servers in the field of geoscience were confirmed in September 2017.[72] One option is the Earth and Space Science Open Archive (ESSOAr) run by The American Geophysical Union (AGU) with support from Wiley.[73]

In addition, EarthArXiv run by a group of scientists[74][75] powered by the Center for Open Science launched in October 2017.[76] Post launch, some further resources here.[77][78]

Marine climate science

MarXiv is a free research repository for ocean-conservation and marine-climate science. Initial funding was provided by the David and Lucille Packard Foundation. It is due to launch in November 2017 via the Center for Open Science Preprints framework.[79][80][81]


ECSasXiv is a preprint research repository for electrochemistry, solid state science and technology. It will be run by The Electrochemistry Society and built and hosted by Open Science Framework.[82]



A pan-African preprint repository, AfricArxiv was launched in June, 2018[83].


ArabiXiv is a preprint server that hosts manuscripts (preprints and postprints) in many scientific disciplines mainly in Arabic but other languages are also considered. It has been built in January, 2018, in partnership with the Center for Open Science.[84]


FrenXiv will be a preprint server that will host manuscripts in many scientific disciplines in French. It has also been built in partnership with the Center for Open Science.[85]


IndiaRxiv, an open access preprint server for Indian scholars and scholarship will shortly be launched in partnership with Centre for Open Science.[86]


INArxiv is a preprint server for interdisciplinary research in Indonesia which uses the Center for Open Science to host materials.[87] INArxiv was launched in August 2017.[88]

Latin America, Iberian Peninsula, South Africa

Announced in December 2017, SciELO Preprints, a SciELO pre-print server is due to launch in July 2018 built on the Open Science Framework platform used by the Center for Open Science.[89]

See also


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External links

Alternating knot

In knot theory, a knot or link diagram is alternating if the crossings alternate under, over, under, over, as one travels along each component of the link. A link is alternating if it has an alternating diagram.

Many of the knots with crossing number less than 10 are alternating. This fact and useful properties of alternating knots, such as the Tait conjectures, was what enabled early knot tabulators, such as Tait, to construct tables with relatively few mistakes or omissions. The simplest non-alternating prime knots have 8 crossings (and there are three such: 819, 820, 821).

It is conjectured that as the crossing number increases, the percentage of knots that are alternating goes to 0 exponentially quickly.

Alternating links end up having an important role in knot theory and 3-manifold theory, due to their complements having useful and interesting geometric and topological properties. This led Ralph Fox to ask, "What is an alternating knot?" By this he was asking what non-diagrammatic properties of the knot complement would characterize alternating knots.

In November 2015, Joshua Evan Greene published a preprint that established a characterization of alternating links in terms of definite spanning surfaces, i.e. a definition of alternating links (of which alternating knots are a special case) without using the concept of a link diagram.Various geometric and topological information is revealed in an alternating diagram. Primeness and splittability of a link is easily seen from the diagram. The crossing number of a reduced, alternating diagram is the crossing number of the knot. This last is one of the celebrated Tait conjectures.

An alternating knot diagram is in one-to-one correspondence with a planar graph. Each crossing is associated with an edge and half of the connected components of the complement of the diagram are associated with vertices in a checker board manner.


arXiv (pronounced "archive"—the X represents the Greek letter chi [χ]) is a repository of electronic preprints (known as e-prints) approved for posting after moderation, but not full peer review. It consists of scientific papers in the fields of mathematics, physics, astronomy, electrical engineering, computer science, quantitative biology, statistics, mathematical finance and economics, which can be accessed online. In many fields of mathematics and physics, almost all scientific papers are self-archived on the arXiv repository. Begun on August 14, 1991, passed the half-million-article milestone on October 3, 2008, and had hit a million by the end of 2014. By October 2016 the submission rate had grown to more than 10,000 per month.


bioRxiv (pronounced "bio-archive") is an open access preprint repository for the biological sciences co-founded by John Inglis and Richard Sever in November 2013. It is hosted by the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL). As preprints, papers hosted on bioRxiv are not peer-reviewed, but undergo basic screening and checked against plagiarism. Readers may offer comments on the preprint. It was inspired by and intends to complement the arXiv repository, which mostly focuses on physics and connected disciplines, launched in 1991 by Paul Ginsparg (who also serves on the bioRxiv advisory board). It received support from both the CSHL and the Lourie Foundation. Additional funding from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative was confirmed in April 2017.Prior to the establishment of bioRxiv, biological scientists were divided on the issue of having a dedicated preprint repository. Many had concerns of having their research scooped by competitors and losing their claim to discovery. However, several geneticists had submitted papers to the "quantitative biology" section of the arXiv repository (launched in 2003) and no longer had those concerns, as they could point to preprints to support their claims of discovery.As a result of bioRxiv's popularity, several biology journals have updated their policies on preprints, clarifying they do not consider preprints to be a 'prior publication' for purpose of the Ingelfinger rule. Over 20,000 tweets were made about bioRxiv-hosted preprints in 2015. In July 2017, the number of monthly submissions exceeded 1,000. As of October 21, 2018, over 30,000 papers have been accepted in total.

Frobenius pseudoprime

In number theory, a Frobenius pseudoprime is a pseudoprime that passes a specific probable prime test described by Jon Grantham in a 1998 preprint and published in 2000.

It has been studied by other authors for the case of quadratic polynomials.

HD 125612 b

HD 125612 b is an extrasolar planet which orbits the G-type main sequence star HD 125612, located approximately 188 light years away in the constellation Virgo. This planet was detected using the doppler spectroscopy method and the discovery was first announced in a paper submitted to the arXiv preprint repository on April 10, 2007.

Hyperparameter (machine learning)

In machine learning, a hyperparameter is a parameter whose value is set before the learning process begins. By contrast, the values of other parameters are derived via training.

Different model training algorithms require different hyperparameters, some simple algorithms (such as ordinary least squares regression) require none. Given these hyperparameters, the training algorithm learns the parameters from the data. For instance, LASSO is an algorithm that adds a regularization hyperparameter to ordinary least squares regression, which has to be set before estimating the parameters through the training algorithm.

Interest rate swap

In finance, an interest rate swap (IRS) is an interest rate derivative (IRD). It involves exchange of interest rates between two parties. In particular it is a linear IRD and one of the most liquid, benchmark products. It has associations with forward rate agreements (FRAs), and with zero coupon swaps (ZCSs).

List of academic journals by preprint policy

This is a list of academic journals by their submission policies regarding the use of preprints prior to publication, such as the arXiv, and bioRxiv. Journals focusing on physics and mathematics are excluded because they routinely accept manuscripts that have been posted to preprint servers.

Publishers' policies on self-archiving (including preprint versions) can also be found at SHERPA/RoMEO.

Manuscript (publishing)

"Manuscript" is a broad concept in publishing, that can refer to one or both of the following:

the formatting of a short story manuscript,

an accepted manuscript (by its merit, not its format), not yet in a final format (but reviewed), published with non-final-format in advance, as preprint.A manuscript is the work that an author submits to a publisher, editor, or producer for publication. Even with the advent of desktop publishing, making it possible for anyone to prepare text that appears professionally typeset, many publishers still require authors to submit manuscripts within their respective guidelines.

Nature Precedings

Nature Precedings was an open access electronic preprint repository of scholarly work in the fields of biomedical sciences, chemistry, and earth sciences. It ceased accepting new submissions as of April 3, 2012.

Nature Precedings functioned as a permanent, citable archive for pre-publication research and preliminary findings. It was a place for researchers to share documents, including presentations, posters, white papers, technical papers, supplementary findings, and non-peer-reviewed manuscripts. It provided a rapid way to share preliminary findings, disseminate emerging results, solicit community feedback, and claim priority over discoveries. The content was curated and developed by the Nature Publishing Group.

Norm residue isomorphism theorem

In mathematics, the norm residue isomorphism theorem is a long-sought result relating Milnor K-theory and Galois cohomology. The result has a relatively elementary formulation and at the same time represents the key juncture in the proofs of many seemingly unrelated theorems from abstract algebra, theory of quadratic forms, algebraic K-theory and the theory of motives. The theorem asserts that a certain statement holds true for any prime and any natural number . John Milnor speculated that this theorem might be true for and all , and this question became known as Milnor's conjecture. The general case was conjectured by Spencer Bloch and Kazuya Kato and became known as the Bloch–Kato conjecture or the motivic Bloch–Kato conjecture to distinguish it from the Bloch–Kato conjecture on values of L-functions. The norm residue isomorphism theorem was proved by Vladimir Voevodsky using a number of highly innovative results of Markus Rost.

Open science

Open science is the movement to make scientific research (including publications, data, physical samples, and software) and its dissemination accessible to all levels of an inquiring society, amateur or professional. Open science is transparent and accessible knowledge that is shared and developed through collaborative networks. It encompasses practices such as publishing open research, campaigning for open access, encouraging scientists to practice open notebook science, and generally making it easier to publish and communicate scientific knowledge.

Open Science can be seen as a continuation of, rather than a revolution in, practices begun in the 17th century with the advent of the academic journal, when the societal demand for access to scientific knowledge reached a point at which it became necessary for groups of scientists to share resources with each other so that they could collectively do their work. In modern times there is debate about the extent to which scientific information should be shared. The conflict that led to the Open Science movement is between the desire of scientists to have access to shared resources versus the desire of individual entities to profit when other entities partake of their resources. Additionally, the status of open access and resources that are available for its promotion are likely to differ from one field of academic inquiry to another.


In academic publishing, a postprint is a digital draft of a research journal article after it has been peer reviewed. A digital draft before peer review is called a preprint. Jointly, postprints and preprints are called eprints.Expressed in the CrossRef terminology, any draft starting from the author's original version but prior to the accepted version is a preprint, whereas any draft from the accepted version onward, including the version of record or definitive work, is a postprint.

Since the advent of the Open Archives Initiative, preprints and postprints have been deposited in institutional repositories, which are interoperable because they are compliant with the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting.

Eprints are at the heart of the open access initiative to make research freely accessible online. Eprints were first deposited or self-archived in arbitrary websites and then harvested by virtual archives such as CiteSeer (and, more recently, Google Scholar), or they were deposited in central disciplinary archives such as Arxiv or PubMed Central.


PsyArXiv is a preprint repository for the psychological sciences opened in September 2016 and officially launched in December 2016. It is hosted by the Center for Open Science. The preprint service was inspired by the arXiv repository. The service allows researchers to upload manuscripts regarding psychology and related fields prior to peer review. As of April 2017, it is indexed by Google Scholar.


SHERPA/RoMEO is a service run by SHERPA to show the copyright and open access self-archiving policies of academic journals.

The database uses a colour-coding scheme to classify publishers according to their self-archiving policy. This shows authors whether the journal allows preprint or postprint archiving in their copyright transfer agreements. It currently hold records for over 22,000 journals.

Saturn's Inuit group of satellites

The Inuit group is a dynamical grouping of the prograde irregular satellites of Saturn which follow similar orbits. Their semi-major axes range between 11 and 18 Gm, their inclinations between 40° and 50°, and their eccentricities between 0.15 and 0.48.

Semantic parsing

Semantic parsing is the task of converting a natural language utterance to a logical form: a machine-understandable representation of its meaning. Semantic parsing can thus be understood as extracting the precise meaning of an utterance. Applications of semantic parsing include machine translation, question answering and code generation. The phrase was first used in the 1970's by Yorick Wilks as the basis for machine translation programs working with only semantic representations.

Systolic freedom

In differential geometry, systolic freedom refers to the fact that closed Riemannian manifolds may have arbitrarily small volume regardless of their systolic invariants.

That is, systolic invariants or products of systolic invariants do not in general provide universal (i.e. curvature-free) lower bounds for the total volume of a closed Riemannian manifold.

Systolic freedom was first detected by Mikhail Gromov in an I.H.É.S. preprint in 1992 (which eventually appeared as Gromov 1996), and was further developed by Mikhail Katz, Michael Freedman and others. Gromov's observation was elaborated on by Marcel Berger (1993). One of the first publications to study systolic freedom in detail is by Katz (1995).

Systolic freedom has applications in quantum error correction. Croke & Katz (2003) survey the main results on systolic freedom.


WASP-11b/HAT-P-10b or WASP-11Ab/HAT-P-10Ab is an extrasolar planet discovered in 2008. The discovery was announced (under the designation WASP-11b) by press release by the SuperWASP project in April 2008 along with planets WASP-6b through to WASP-15b, however at this stage more data was needed to confirm the parameters of the planets and the coordinates were not given. On 26 September 2008, the HATNet Project's paper describing the planet which they designated HAT-P-10b appeared on the arXiv preprint server. The SuperWASP team's paper appeared as a preprint on the Extrasolar Planets Encyclopaedia on the same day, confirming that the two objects (WASP-11b and HAT-P-10b) were in fact the same, and the teams agreed to use the combined designation.The planet has the third lowest insolation of the known transiting planets (only Gliese 436 b and HD 17156 b have lower insolation). The temperature implies it falls into the pL class of hot Jupiters: planets which lack significant quantities of titanium(II) oxide and vanadium(II) oxide in their atmospheres and do not have temperature inversions. An alternative classification system for hot Jupiters is based on the equilibrium temperature and the planet's Safronov number. In this scheme, for a given temperature, class I planets have high Safronov numbers and tend to be in orbit around cooler host stars, while class II planets have lower Safronov numbers. In the case of WASP-11b/HAT-P-10b, the equilibrium temperature is 1030 K and the Safronov number is 0.047±0.003, which means it is located close to the dividing line between the class I and class II planets.The planet is in a binary star system, the second star is WASP-11 B, with a mass 0.34 ±0.05 of the Sun and a 3483 ±43 temperature.

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