Ethics Statement & Publication Malpractice Statement
Our Publication Ethics are based on COPE’s Best Practice Guidelines for Journal Editors.
Duties of Authors
- Reporting Standards: Authors should present an accurate account of the original research performed as well as an objective discussion of its significance. Researchers should present their results honestly and without fabrication, falsification or inappropriate data manipulation. A manuscript should contain sufficient detail and references to permit others to replicate the work. Fraudulent or knowingly inaccurate statements constitute unethical behavior and are unacceptable. Manuscripts should follow the submission guidelines of the journal.
- Originality and Plagiarism: Authors must ensure that they have written entirely original work. The manuscript should not be submitted concurrently to more than one publication unless the editors have agreed to co-publication. Relevant previous work and publications, both by other researchers and the authors’ own, should be properly acknowledged and referenced. The primary literature should be cited where possible. Original wording taken directly from publications by other researchers should appear in quotation marks with the appropriate citations.
- Multiple, Redundant, or Concurrent Publications: The author should not, in general, submit the same manuscript to more than one journal concurrently. It is also expected that the author will not publish redundant manuscripts or manuscripts describing the same research in more than one journal. Submitting the same manuscript to more than one journal concurrently constitutes unethical publishing behavior and is unacceptable. Multiple publications arising from a single research project should be clearly identified as such and the primary publication should be referenced
- Acknowledgment of Sources: Authors should acknowledge all sources of data used in the research and cite publications that have been influential in determining the nature of the reported work. Proper acknowledgment of the work of others must always be given.
- Authorship of the Paper: The authorship of research publications should accurately reflect individuals’ contributions to the work and its reporting. Authorship should be limited to those who have made a significant contribution to conception, design, execution or interpretation of the reported study. Others who have made significant contributions must be listed as co-authors. In cases where major contributors are listed as authors while those who made less substantial, or purely technical, contributions to the research or to the publication are listed in an acknowledgment section. Authors also ensure that all the authors have seen and agreed to the submitted version of the manuscript and their inclusion of names as co-authors.
- Disclosure and Conflicts of Interest: All authors should clearly disclose in their manuscript any financial or other substantive conflicts of interest that might be construed to influence the results or interpretation of their manuscript. All sources of financial support for the project should be disclosed.
- Fundamental Errors in Published Works: If the author discovers a significant error or inaccuracy in the submitted manuscript, then the author should promptly notify the journal editor or publisher and cooperate with the editor to retract or correct the paper.
- Hazards and Human or Animal Subjects: The author should clearly identify in the manuscript if the work involves chemicals, procedures or equipment that have any unusual hazards inherent in their use.
Duties of Reviewers
- Confidentiality: Information regarding manuscripts submitted by authors should be kept confidential and be treated as privileged information. They must not be shown to or discussed with others except as authorized by the editor.
- Acknowledgment of Sources: Reviewers must ensure that authors have acknowledged all sources of data used in the research. Reviewers should identify relevant published work that has not been cited by the authors. Any statement that an observation, derivation, or argument had been previously reported should be accompanied by the relevant citation. The reviewers should notify the journal immediately if they come across any irregularities, have concerns about ethical aspects of the work, are aware of substantial similarity between the manuscript and a concurrent submission to another journal or a published article, or suspect that misconduct may have occurred during either the research or the writing and submission of the manuscript; reviewers should, however, keep their concerns confidential and not personally investigate further unless the journal asks for further information or advice.
- Standards of Objectivity: Review of submitted manuscripts must be done objectively and the reviewers should express their views clearly with supporting arguments. The reviewers should follow journals’ instructions on the specific feedback that is required of them and unless there are good reasons not to. The reviewers should be constructive in their reviews and provide feedback that will help the authors to improve their manuscript. The reviewer should make clear which suggested additional investigations are essential to support claims made in the manuscript under consideration and which will just strengthen or extend the work
- 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 with any of the authors, companies, or institutions connected to the papers. In the case of double-blind review, if they suspect the identity of the author(s) notify the journal if this knowledge raises any potential conflict of interest.
Promptness: The reviewers should respond in a reasonable time-frame. The reviewers only agree to review a manuscript if they are fairly confident they can return a review within the proposed or mutually agreed time-frame, informing the journal promptly if they require an extension. In the event that a reviewer feels it is not possible for him/her to complete a review of the manuscript within stipulated time then this information must be communicated to the editor so that the manuscript could be sent to another reviewer.