Making Big Ideas Happen

Excellence in Publications

At WRI, we are committed to providing high quality research. Our publications are held to traditional “academic” standards of excellence such as rigor and objectivity, and also must be timely, fit for audience, and rooted in a strategic plan for achieving positive change in the world. They also must align with WRI’s mission and values: integrity, innovation, urgency, independence, and respect.

The items appearing on WRI’s Publications page generally fall into one of three categories: reports, issue briefs, and working papers. The review process for each of these categories is described below.

Reports and Issue Briefs

Reports and issue briefs are subjected to an extensive process of both internal and external peer review, overseen by WRI’s Vice President for Science and Research. All reports and issue briefs have been reviewed by a minimum of four internal and four external reviewers, which can include topic experts, target audience members, and avowed critics. They are approved for release by both the appropriate Program Director and the Vice President for Science and Research.

Working Papers

WRI working papers are intended to serve as a means of communicating work that is still in progress. In many cases, working papers consist of research requiring broad exposure and stakeholder feedback before it can be finalized as a report or issue brief. At other times, they serve as a means for responding to time sensitive, rapidly evolving opportunities, such as analysis of a draft standard, or of country positions in an international process. Working papers carry a disclaimer:

World Resources Institute Working Papers contain preliminary research, analysis, findings, and recommendations. They are circulated to stimulate timely discussion and critical feedback and to influence ongoing debate on emerging issues. Most working papers are eventually published in another form and their content may be revised.

Working papers undergo a streamlined review process determined by the Program Director. They generally receive some form of both internal and external peer review, and are approved for release by the Program Director.