Can my advisor's advisor (he is a very well known person in the field) be a reviewer for a paper written by me along with my advisor (I mean the authors are me and my advisor). The work is extending/generalizing a work of my advisor's advisor. I mean whether conflict of interest will allow this. Thanks in advance. Any help/suggestions will be useful.

2 Answers 2


Conflicts of interest have to be determined individually for each author of each work product (paper, proposal, book, etc.). If a person has a conflict for any author, she should not act as a reviewer.

In the case you cite, your advisor’s advisor cannot act as a reviewer for your advisor, and thus cannot serve as a reviewer. If your advisor is not a coauthor, then your advisor’s advisor could act as a reviewer, but I would likely err on the side of caution and not nominate him as a reviewer.


Have a look at the submission instructions, you may also link them here. It depends on the conference/journal/publisher/... how they define a conflict of interest. Most likely, this will not work out and is a typical case of CoI if they have collaborated very little time ago.

  • 1
    Thanks. Yes, they frequently collaborate. Also, suppose if I write single author paper in the future can he be reviewer ? Commented Feb 27, 2018 at 12:18
  • It depends. This should be OK in many cases, however, have a look at the submission instructions.
    – J-Kun
    Commented Feb 27, 2018 at 12:45
  • 2
    @RIchardWilliams From what I see, usually recent co-authors and advisor/student are considered in conflict. On the other hand, you and your advisor's advisor are not automatically in conflict.
    – Alexey B.
    Commented Feb 27, 2018 at 17:23

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