Q: What does "Awaiting peer review and pending decision" after a month of resubmission mean?
I have submitted my paper to an IET journal. Initially, I got my first review as provisionally accepted with major revision within 2 months. I was asked to resubmit the paper with modifications within a month. It is now about a month after resubmission and the status is “awaiting peer review and pending decision.” Should I inquire about the review status?
It generally takes several rounds of reviews and revisions to produce publication-ready papers. The entire review process can take quite a few months as peer review involves expertise and attention to minor details. Moreover, reviewers are busy researchers themselves who juggle between a host of tasks. Thus it is very natural for a manuscript to be “awaiting peer review” or remain “under review” for several months, depending upon the field and the journal to which the manuscript is submitted.
Since your manuscript required major revisions, it will have to be checked by the reviewers again after resubmission. From what you have mentioned, the editor is now waiting to assign reviewers to your revised manuscript. In most cases, the manuscript is sent back to the same reviewers who evaluated it the first time.
However, if the initial reviewers are not available at that time, the editor has to look out for other reviewers. As of now, the editor may be searching for new reviewers for your manuscript or waiting for the previous ones to confirm their availability. The status of your manuscript should change to “reviewers assigned” or “under review” once the adequate number of reviewers has been assigned for the review.
However, it would be best to write to the journal editor to gain further clarity about the progress of your manuscript. Make sure you are polite in all your communication to the journal. These resources will help you write an inquiry to the journal:
- How to write an inquiry to a journal?
- HANDBOOK: A practical handbook of templates for communicating with the journal