Sage buys stake in Publons

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Sage Publishing has led an investment round for a minority stake in Publons, with additional participation by existing investors. Known for its mission to use peer review to speed up science, Publons will remain completely independent and publisher-neutral following this investment, allowing for continued participation from other parties.

Established in 2013, Publons partners with publishers and other institutions to formally recognise the value of reviews and to give credit to reviewers by treating reviews as a measureable research output. Their website ( provides a forum to learn more about researchers and research through the lens of both pre- and post-publication peer review.

The two parties say the investment will provide Publons with the resources to expand their team with a focus on improving the product, integrating with more journals, and building a sustainable business.

'At Sage Publishing, we are dedicated to supporting the growth of academic innovators who think outside-the-box to improve scholarship – even when their influence disrupts long-established practices,' commented David McCune, SAGE publishing shareholder and deputy executive chairman of SAGE Publishing.

'Peer review is a pillar of the scholarly process and fundamental for the creation of scholarly knowledge, yet reviewing efforts often go unrecognised. Publons’ work is an integral part in helping to not only make the debate around scientific research more open, but also key to helping formalise the idea of debate through reputational incentive.

Engaging debates on peer review and encouraging increased openness around innovative scholarly issues is an important endeavour. We see Publons' work as an important missing piece in our academic publishing industry, and its product is one that will benefit SAGE and all publishers as well as the entire academic community.'