In this paper, we analyze the problem faced by impatient researchers attempting to balance the considerations of journal quality, submission lags, and acceptance probabilities in choosing appropriate outlets for their work. We first study the case in which probabilities of submission outcomes are exogenous parameters and show that authors can find the optimal submission path through the use of journal 'scores' based only on the journals' characteristics and the author's degree of impatience. Then, we analyze a more realistic framework in which acceptance probability is determined by the quality of the manuscript, in which the reviewing process may be imperfect, and in which authors may not be certain of the manuscript's quality. Throughout, we illustrate our analysis with data on actual economics journals. We also consider the problem of journals facing a large number of submissions, limited space, and limited resources to review papers and, in particular, we examine the relative effectiveness of using submission fees and reviewing lags to ration article submissions.
The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy (BEJEAP) is an international forum for scholarship that employs microeconomics to analyze issues in business, consumer behavior and public policy. Topics include the interaction of firms, the functioning of markets, the effects of domestic and international policy and the design of organizations and institutions.