Best Practices for Ethical Conduct
Our statement of best practices for ethical conduct is primarily based on the Code of Conduct and Best-Practice Guidelines for Journal Authors (Committee on Publication Ethics, 2011).
The journal editor is responsible for deciding which of the papers submitted to the journal will be published. The journal editor evaluates manuscripts without regard to the authors’ race, gender, sexual orientation, religious belief, ethnic origin, citizenship, or political philosophy. Decision will be based on the paper’s importance, originality and clarity, and the validity and relevance to the journal’s scope. Current legal requirements regarding libel, copyright infringement, and plagiarism should also be considered.
The journal editor and any editorial staff must not disclose any information about a submitted manuscript to anyone other than the corresponding author(s), reviewers, potential reviewers, other editorial advisers, and the publisher, as appropriate.
Disclosure and Conflicts of Interest
Unpublished materials disclosed in a submitted paper will not be used by the journal editor or other members of the editorial board for their own research purposes without the author’s explicit consent.
Contribution to Editorial Decisions
The peer-review process assists the journal editor and the editorial board in making editorial decisions and may also serve the author in improving the paper.
Any selected reviewers who feel unqualified to review the research reported in a manuscript, or knows that its prompt review will be impossible should notify the journal editor and withdraw from the review process.
Any manuscripts received for review must be treated as confidential documents. They must not be disclosed to or discussed with others, except as authorized by the journal editor.
Standards of Objectivity
Reviews should be conducted objectively. Personal criticism of the author is inappropriate. Reviewers should express their views clearly with supporting arguments.
Acknowledgement of Sources
Reviewers should identify cases in which relevant published work referred to in the paper has not been cited in the reference section. They should point out whether observations or arguments derived from other publications are accompanied by the respective source. Reviewers will notify the journal editor of any substantial similarity or overlap between the manuscript under consideration and any other published paper of which they have personal knowledge.
Disclosure and Conflict of Interest
Privileged information or ideas obtained through peer review must be kept confidential and not used for personal advantage. Reviewers should not consider manuscripts in which they have conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships or connections to any of the authors, companies, or institutions associated with the papers.
Authors of original research reports should present an accurate account if the work performed, as well as an objective discussion of its significance. Underlying data should be represented accurately in the paper. A paper should contain sufficient detail and references to permit others to replicate the work. Fraudulent or knowingly inaccurate statements constitute unethical behavior and are unacceptable.
Data Access and Retention
Authors could be asked to provide the raw data of their study together with the paper for editorial review and should be prepared to make the data publicly available if practicable. In any event, authors should ensure accessibility of such data to other competent professionals for at least ten years after publication (preferably via an institutional or subject-based data repository or other data center), provided that the confidentiality of the participants can be protected and legal rights concerning proprietary data do not preclude their release.
Originality, Plagiarism, and Acknowledgement of Sources
Authors will submit only entirely original work, or will appropriately cite or quote the work and/or words of others. Publications that have been influential in determining the nature of the reported work should also be cited.
Multiple, Redundant, or Concurrent Publication
In general, papers describing essentially the same research should not be published in more than one journal. Submitting the same paper to more than one journal constitutes unethical publishing behavior and is unacceptable. Manuscripts that have been published as copyrighted material elsewhere cannot be submitted. In addition, manuscripts under review by the journal should not be resubmitted to copyrighted publications.
Authorship of the Paper
Authorship should be limited to those who have made a significant contribution to the conception, design, execution, or interpretation of the reported study. All those who have made significant contributions should be listed as co-authors.
The corresponding author ensures all contributing co-authors and no uninvolved persons are included in the author list. The corresponding author will also verify that all co-authors have approved the final version of the paper and have agreed to its submission for publication.
Fundamental Errors in Published Works
When an author discovers a significant error or inaccuracy in his/her own published work, it is the author’s obligation to promptly notify the journal editor or publisher and to cooperate with the journal editor to retract or correct the paper in form of an erratum.
Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). (2011, March 7). Code of Conduct and Best-Practice
Guidelines for Journal Editors retrieved from: publicationethics.org