Recently I have been asked by a journal to review an article as a referee. I did it within 3 days, and the very next day another mail came asking me to review another article. I was reviewing it when, aft after 2 days, the editor sent me an email saying I don't need to review it anymore. What might be the reasons behind this?


5 Answers 5


Another explanation: The editor forgot that they had already asked you for a review a short while ago. Realizing this and not wanting to burden you twice in a short time, they paddled back.


There are many possible reasons. Perhaps the author(s) withdrew it. Perhaps the editor made a decision somehow, though given the time, probably a reject.

Of course, you can ask the editor, and you may or may not get a real reason.


The most likely explanation: The editor invited too many reviewers, with the expectation that most of them would decline. Other reviewers submitted their review before you, so your review was no longer needed.

It is like an overbooked flight.

  • I'm wondering: Asking several reviewers is certainly common, but wouldn't you usually wait for the first invited reviewers to accept/reject the request before asking further? Commented Jul 21, 2020 at 8:19
  • @henning--reinstateMonica That is at the editor's or journal's discretion. Commented Jul 21, 2020 at 9:33

Another review was submitted that left the editor in no doubt that the paper should be rejected (typically for reasons where there is no room for a different opinion, e.g. incontrovertible evidence of plagiarism, duplicate submission, a fatal flaw in the problem definition, etc).


The editor hastily selected reviewers, and after the fact encountered information or 'came to a realization' that having you review the article would constitute a conflict of interest. This may be real or perceived. I believe, however, this would be a less likely scenario than those suggested in the other answers above.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .