Writing Referee Reports

First, we would like to thank all of you who agree to referee reports for our journal.  Your professional assistance is most appreciated, and we couldn't do it without you.

This page explains the structure of the reports and three ways of transmitting them to the editorial office. A referee report consists of two parts: (i) a cover letter with the manuscript number and title and your succinct opinion, and (ii) the longer, more detailed report itself, intended to be transmitted to the author(s).  We prefer reports by e-mail.  Postal mail and faxes are also acceptable.

The editorial address is:
Carl R. Chen (finance)
IREF Editorial Office
University of Dayton
300 College Park
Dayton, OH 45469-2271

Email: IREF@udayton.edu

Cover Letter

As we enter the new century, the editorial process should be improved. You can reduce the frustration of authors and help the profession immensely if your cover letter includes:
  • manuscript number (it takes time to locate the manuscript without it).
  • the title (in case there is an error in the manuscript number, this insures that the editorial office locate the manuscript).
  • your postal address
  • your email address
  • your summary opinion
    • A. Accept in present form or with slight changes.
    • B. Accept for publication after minor revision, with a suggestion about the length.
    • C. Reconsider for publication after extensive revision.
    • D. Reject, with suggestions for possible submission elsewhere.
    • E. Shrink to a note (of no more than 10 pages) with suggestions


Prepare your comments that include your reasons, suggestions, and concerns. Comment on the manuscript's originality, clarity, contribution to literature, and relevance to real world problems. Make suggestions about its length, organization, tables, and figures. The bottom line is this: If there is an important idea in the paper, make constructive comments (e.g., how to streamline the arguments, what parts should be cut) and help authors publish the paper. If not, say so frankly. There is no point in beating about the bush. If the paper is clearly below IREF standards, detailed comments are unnecessary.

If you lose the manuscript

Referees who travel frequently occasionally lose manuscripts. If this happens, just contact the editorial office, and you will get another copy. Nothing is more appreciated by authors than a prompt referee report.