Building racial equity and diversity in the peer review process

Building racial equity and diversity in the peer review process

Events in 2020 have exposed the persistence of racism in every sphere of society. The tragic killing of George Floyd and the disproportionate impact of Covid-19 on people of colour have heightened public consciousness of racial inequality and the role that White privilege plays in this process.
In the wake of global Black Lives Matter protests, individuals and organisations are rightfully reflecting on the roles they inadvertently play in maintaining the status quo, and actively seeking opportunities to be agents of change.
Routledge is committed to working collaboratively with under-served communities and would like to increase the racial and ethnic diversity of their peer reviewers. Race shapes both the production and consumption of knowledge and consequently, decisions to accept or reject research affect the racial, ethnic and cultural diversity of scholars whose work is published (Kubota, 2019).
As Gabriel and Mc Dougall (2020) state:
“The priority has to be on a radical epistemological shift so that we are doing more than facilitating new and more equitable spaces for agency within the structure but being prepared to accept our complicity in structural inequality”.
Peer reviewers possess the privilege to act as gatekeepers of research, controlling who has the power to speak and be heard and to determine what types of methods, approaches and paradigms are legitimized and valued. Working with under-served communities to increase the racial and ethnic diversity of peer reviewers is an important, incremental step towards enhancing equity, voice, and representation in academic publishing.
Peer reviewing also allows scholars to keep up with the latest research in the field and can help build new connections and future collaborations. Routledge and CRC Press are both part of the Taylor and Francis Group. Together they publish books and journals in science, engineering, behavioural science, education, social sciences and the humanities.
“We are particularly keen to hear from people who are interested in peer reviewing book proposals and manuscripts for Routledge or CRC Press across all disciplines. Our review process is anonymous, and we offer reviewers a choice of payment or books as payment. If you would like to contact me with a link to your department website and/or areas of research and teaching, I can introduce the appropriate subject editor at Routledge”.  Natalie Foster, Senior Publisher, Routledge, Taylor and Francis.
If you are interested in peer reviewing for Routledge or CRC Press, please contact Natalie Foster  by email:
Please mention Black British Academics with your enquiry for a dedicated response, and COMPLETE OUR TWO-MINUTE SURVEY so we can better serve your needs.
Guide to Submitting a Book Proposal
Gabriel, D., & McDougall, J. (2020). Can We Talk? A White, Middle Class Male’s Perspective on Transforming the Ivory Tower: models for gender equality & social justice, Media Practice & Education Issue 21:3
Kubota, R. (2019). Confronting epistemological racism, decolonizing scholarly knowledge: Race and gender in applied linguistics. Applied Linguistics.


Dr Deborah Gabriel

Dr Gabriel is a leader in race, education, and social justice as the Founder and Director of Black British Academics. Her intellectual work is interdisciplinary and broadly focused on the dynamics of race, gender and culture and the relationships between race, power, privilege, and inequality from a critical race and Black feminist standpoint. As a consultant, she specializes in strategic approaches to equity, diversity and inclusion centred on social justice and transformation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.