The importance of being second
we are formalizing a policy whereby manuscripts that confirm or extend a recently published study (“scooped” manuscripts, also referred to as complementary) are eligible for consideration at PLOS Biology.
(…) many journals will reject it citing lack of novelty. However, there is a self-evident benefit to publishing complementary research, and at PLOS Biology, we consider that two papers from two groups independently identifying the same phenomenon in parallel increase the confidence in the results of the work.
This new policy, acknowledging the value of complementary studies, therefore addresses the current concern regarding the reproducibility, or lack thereof, of scientific findings.
(…) We wish to recognize both the value of validating results and the researchers undertaking the work. Highlighting replication studies will ultimately prove positive for the public perception of science.