Pre-results Review at the Journal of Development Economics

As part of its pre-results review track, the Journal of Development Economics (JDE) now offers authors the opportunity to submit papers for review and approval before the results of the study are known. This track is designed to reward well-designed and well-executed studies regardless of whether their empirical results yield clear interpretations. As such, pre-results review may be particularly attractive to development economists working on research projects for which the data is yet to be collected (or researchers who have not yet had access to the data they will analyze). Articles in this format should still align with the existing topical and methodological focus of the JDE. Researchers are free to propose any type of study design for prospective projects where they have not yet collected or accessed data.

BITSS collaborated with the JDE to launch the pre-results review track as part of a pilot project in March, 2018 – November, 2019. Thanks to the high interest among authors and the positive experience of the editorial board, pre-results review is now a permanent track at the JDE. Learn more about lessons learned from the pilot in this blog post.

Visit to find the most recent version of the Author Guidelines and other resources.

If you are a journal editor interested in bringing pre-results review to your journal, review our page with resources and services or get in touch.

Submit Your Work

Consult the resources below for guidance on how to prepare your work:

Submissions for pre-results review should follow the same publishing policies and formatting rules as regular submissions outlined in the JDE Author Information Pack, including JDE’s Mandatory Replication Policy. In addition, submissions for pre-results review must follow the rules outlined in the Author Guidelines for Pre-Results Review. Submit your work as a “Stage 1 Registered Report: Proposal” on the JDE’s online submissions platform.

Find answers to common questions from authors, including the features of the pre-results review format, eligibility of study design and data, preparing submissions, deviations from the pre-specified research design, and the editorial triage and the review process.

BITSS prepared a template to assist authors in the preparation of their Stage 1 Proposal submissions. Please note that this template is optional, and not all of the fields included in it may be applicable to all research projects. You are free to modify or delete its sections based on the research design of your submission or use a different format altogether.

Find the titles, abstracts and Stage 1 Proposals for work that has been accepted based on pre-results review at the JDE.

Find answers to common questions from reviewers at Stage 1 or 2 of the process.

Contact the JDE

Contact Lead Editor Prof. Andrew Foster ( or Editor Prof. Dean Karlan ( with questions about JDE pre-results review.