29/11/2012 | 17:05:29
The issuance of manuscript in a peer-reviewed journal is an essential building phase in the development of a coherent and respected network of knowledge. It reflects the quality of the work of authors and the institutions that support them. Peer-reviewed manuscripts support and embody the scientific approach.
It is therefore important to agree upon standards of expected ethical behavior for all parties involved in the act of publishing, including responsibilities of authors, reviewers and editors.
1. Responsibilities of Authors
Duties of author(s) consist of (i) Reporting Standards; (ii) Confidentiality; (iii) Article Authorship; (iv) Data Access and Retention; (v) Originality and Acknowledgement of Sources; (vi) Declaration of Competing Interests; (vii) Notification of Major Misstatements.
- Reporting Standards: Authors should present original papers conducted as well as an objective discussion of its significance. Data should be presented accurately in the manuscript. A manuscript should contain sufficient details and references to permit others to replicate the work. Fraudulent statements constitute unethical behavior and are unacceptable. Review and professional publication manuscripts should also be accurate and objective, and editorial ‘opinion’ works should be clearly identified as such.
- Confidentiality: Information obtained in the course of confidential services, such as refereeing manuscripts or grant applications, must not be used without the explicit written permission of the author of the work involved in these services.
- Article Authorship: All those who have made significant contributions should be listed as co-authors. Where there are others who have participated in certain substantive aspects of the manuscript (e.g. language editing), they should be recognized in the acknowledgement section. The corresponding author should ensure that all appropriate co-authors are included on the manuscript, and that all co-authors have seen and approved the final version of the manuscript and have agreed to its submission for publication. Authors are expected to consider carefully the list and order of authors before submitting their manuscript.
- Data Access and Retention: Authors may be asked to provide the data supporting manuscripts for editorial review and/or to comply with the open data requirements of JED. Authors should be prepared to provide public access to such data, if practicable, and retained such data for a reasonable number of years after issuance.
- Originality and Acknowledgement of Sources: The authors should make sure that they have written entirely original works, and if the authors have used the work and/or words of others, that this has been appropriately cited or quoted. Proper acknowledgment of the work of others must always be given. Authors should cite papers that have influenced the reported work and that give the work appropriate context within the larger scholarly record. Information obtained privately, as in conversation, correspondence, or discussion with third parties, must not be used or reported without explicit, written permission from the source. Plagiarism in all its forms constitutes unethical behavior and is unacceptable.
- Declaration of Competing Interests: All authors should disclose in their manuscript any financial and personal relationships with other people or organizations that could be viewed as inappropriately influencing (bias) their work. All sources of financial support for the conduct of the research and/or preparation of the manuscript should be disclosed, as should the role of the sponsor(s), if any, in research design; in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the report writing; and in the decision to submit the paper for publication. If the funding source(s) should be disclosed. Examples of potential conflicts of interest which should be disclosed include employment, consultancies, stock ownership, patent applications, and grants or other funding. Potential conflicts of interest should be disclosed at the earliest possible stage.
- Notification of Major Misstatements: When an author discovers a significant error or inaccuracy in their own published work, it is the author’s obligation to promptly inform the editor and cooperate with the editor to retract or correct mistakes. If the editor learns from a third party that a published work contains an error, it is the obligation of the author to cooperate with the editor, including providing proof to the editor where requested.
2. Responsibilities of Reviewers
A reviewer has some duties relating to the manuscript review such as (i) Contribution to editorial decisions; (ii) Confidentiality; (iii) Objectivity Standards and Competing Interests; (iv) Alertness to Issues of Ethics.
- Contribution to Editorial Decisions: Peer review assists the editor in making decisions whether or not publishing the paper and through the editorial communications with the author may also help the author in improving the paper. Peer review is an essential part of formal scholarly communication, and lies at the center of the scientific approach. Reviewers’ judgments should be objective and expressed clearly with supporting arguments. Reviewers are asked generally to treat authors and their works as they would like to be treated themselves and to observe good reviewing etiquette.
- Confidentiality: Any manuscripts received for review must be viewed as confidential materials. Reviewers must not share the review or information about the paper with anyone or contact the authors directly without permission from the editor. Some editors encourage discussion with colleagues or co-reviewing activities, but reviewers first discuss this with the editor for ensuring that confidentiality is observed. Unissued documents in a submitted article must not be used in a reviewer’s own research without the written consent of the author. Privileged information or ideas got through peer review must be kept confidential and not used for personal purpose.
- Objectivity Standards and Competing Interests: Reviews should be conducted in an objective manner. Reviewers should be aware of any personal bias they may have and consider this when reviewing a manuscript. Personal criticism of the manuscript is inappropriate. Reviewers should express their views clearly with supporting arguments. Reviewers should consult the editor before agreeing to review a manuscript where they have potential conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships or connections with any of the authors, firms connected to the manuscripts. If a reviewer suggests that an author includes citations to the reviewer’s work, this must be for genuine scientific reasons and not with the intention of increasing the reviewer’s citation count or enhancing the visibility of their works.
- Alertness to Issues of Ethics: A reviewer should be alert to potential ethical issues in the manuscript and should bring these to the attention of the editor, including any substantial similarity or overlap between the manuscript under consideration and any other issued publication of which the reviewer knew before. Any statement that an observation, derivation, or argument had been previously reported should be accompanied by the relevant citation.
3. Responsibilities of Editors
Duties of editors in this part consist of (i) Decision of publication; (ii) Peer review; (iii) Confidentiality; (iv) Fair play; (v) Declaration of interests.
- Decision of Issuance: The editor is solely and independently responsible for deciding which of the manuscripts submitted to JED should be issued. The validation of the work in question and its importance to scientists and readers must always underwrite such decisions. The editor should comply with the policies of the journal and are constrained by such legal requirements as shall then be in force regarding issues such as copyright infringement and plagiarism. The editor may discuss with other editors or reviewers in making these decisions.
- Peer review: The editor should ensure that the peer review process is understood as fair, unbiased, and timely. Research manuscripts must typically be reviewed by at least two independent reviewers, and where necessary the editor should seek additional opinions. The editor shall select reviewers with having suitable expertise in the relevant field and follow best practice in avoiding the selection of fraudulent peer reviewers. The editor will review all disclosures of potential conflicts of interest and suggestions for self-citation made by reviewers in order to determine whether there is any potential for bias.
- Confidentiality: The editor have to protect the confidentiality of all documents submitted to the journal and all communications with reviewers, unless otherwise agreed with the relevant reviewers and authors. In exceptional cases, the editor may share limited information with editors of other journals where deemed necessary to investigate suspected research misconduct. Unpublished documents disclosed in a submitted manuscript must not be used in an editor's own research without the express written consent of the author. Privileged information or viewpoints got through peer review must be kept in a confidential manner and not used for personal purpose.
- Fair play: The editorial policies of JED encourage transparency and complete, honest reporting, and the editor ensures that peer reviewers and authors have a clear understanding of what is expected of them. The editor will establish a transparent mechanism for appeal against editorial decisions.
- Declaration of Interests: Any potential editorial conflicts of interest should be declared to JED in writing prior to the appointment of the editor, and then updated if and when new conflicts arise. JED may publish such declarations in the journal. The editor must not be involved in decisions about manuscripts which she/he has written her/himself or have been written by family members or colleagues or which bear on products or services in which the editor has an interest. Moreover, any such submission must be subject to all of JED’s usual procedures, peer review must be handled independently of the relevant author/editor and their research groups, and there must be a clear statement to this effect on any such manuscript that is published.