Blindingly simple

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Double-blind peer review is now an option for manuscripts submitted to Nature Chemistrythis post from a couple of weeks ago mentioned that it was coming and provided some links for further reading.

Authors who wish to choose this option should check the box ‘Yes I do want to participate in double-blind peer review’ during the submission procedure, and ensure their manuscript is prepared in a way that does not give away their identity. Below are some instructions on how to go about ensuring that your manuscript is ready for double-blind peer review. A PDF of these instructions can also be found here.

1. Do not include names or affiliations anywhere in the manuscript file or in any of the supplementary information files. This information should be included in the cover letter and it is important that you state very clearly in which order the authors should appear on the paper in the event of publication.

2. Ensure that there is no author information in the metadata of any of the submitted files. This information is usually added automatically from the identity information on your computer. In many commonly used programmes, such as Microsoft Word, author information is displayed (and can be edited) in the ‘File’ tab under ‘Properties’.

3. When referring to your own previously published work within the paper, use neutral terminology: that is, replace phrases like ‘we have previously reported that…’ with ‘it has previously been reported that…’ or similar.

4. Do not include unpublished work in the reference list. It is a requirement of submission, however, that you alert us to any related manuscripts from your group that are under consideration or in press at other journals, or are being written up for submission to other journals. Copies of these manuscripts should be clearly marked and included as separate files with your submission.

5. The Acknowledgments section and the Author information section (including the author contributions statement, to whom requests for correspondence and materials should be addressed, and any competing financial interests statement) should be included in the cover letter and not in the manuscript file. This information should be added back into the manuscript only after the peer-review process is complete and the paper is accepted for publication.

A PDF version of a one-page guide-to-authors summary for initial submissions to Nature Chemistry can also be found here.

Stu Cantrill

Chief Editor, Nature Chemistry, Springer Nature