Dear Anika, dear IC,
thanks for your work!
I agree with the proposal in principle, but would like to add some aspects to the point “Original Research” for discussion.
In my opinion, conferences like PME serve to exchange and discuss current research in our field. Now, there are set rules for the RR, according to which a RR presentation is only possible after a positive review of a RR paper which appears in the proceedings. According to the publication ethics proposal, it follows from the criteria for “Original Research” that presentation and discussion of certain research results (in RR format) will not be possible (if I understand it correctly):
1. the research results were already submitted to a journal.
2. the research results have already been published nationally in a language other than English.
In addition, with the planned upgrading of the RR paper, the problem may arise that
3. it becomes more challenging to publish research in an international journal article, if some of the main results were already published as RR in the PME proceedings. This is of course already now a challenge, as duplicate publications are to be avoided and one has to think carefully about what to write in an RR paper in order to be able to present and discuss at the conference, and what to leave out in order to have enough as “substantially more information” for a journal article. However, if the status of the RR increases, this might be more challenging.
Points 1-3 are relevant for countries where papers in conference proceedings do not have a great reputation (this is the case in my country; neither my institute, nor our national research funding agency weights proceedings articles as highly as a peer reviewed journal article – there is a big gap, which hardly will be narrowed after indexing the PME proceedings in Scopus). So, colleagues from such countries will prefer to reserve their best research results for journal articles and will not want to replace this publication with an RR in PME proceedings. This may result in the problem that some of the interesting research will no longer being presented and discussed at PME.
To avoid this problem, the IC might consider separating the RR presentation from the publication of the 8 page proceeding paper: Although the 8 page paper is used for the review process to ensure scientific quality, only an extended abstract of 2 or 3 pages then appears in the proceedings (which does not count as a full publication, but documents what was presented as RR at the conference). Such a solution would allow that also current research can be presented and discussed at the PME which is submitted in parallel to a journal (see point 1) or has already been published in a national context (see point 2). Furthermore, the case of publication in a journal after the meeting, as mentioned in point 3, is not at risk.