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Does it happen that the editor asks the reviewers to re-review a paper? For about 10 days or so it has been "awaiting final decision" after a few months of under review and then awaiting reviewers scores.

Today it went back to "awaiting reviewers scores"

What do you think that means?

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  • You have to ask the editor. It might mean nothing at all.
    – Buffy
    Sep 12 at 19:08
  • This is like reading tea leaves. Why do you care? Just submit and wait for an actual email/feedback from the publisher. I never check the status of my papers. Sep 12 at 23:14

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There are a number of possibilities. For example, the editor or the editor's assistant might have reset the number of referees needed, maybe to correct an initial error, or just incidentally by playing around with a different setting. It could be that the reviews were contradictory or that a review was not acceptable and needed to be replaced. It could have been a software glitch. It could have been a change in associate editor.

Waiting for the result of a submission can be trying as much can depend on the acceptance or non-acceptance of a paper, for instance, if it is a condition for a degree. While the editing software tries to help by giving you information about the current state of your manuscript, it is often best for yourself to avoid checking it. The system is opaque and you can do nothing about the outcome. Use this information only if a decision is overdue. At least that what I learned to do myself in order to avoid fretting.

You could of course ask the editor, but I do not see what good can come out of it. The editor might not know because their view of the processing software is different and the editor is usually not the only one having access to it.

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