Publication Ethics Statement
We are committed to promoting the highest ethical publication practices, and expect all submitting authors to uphold publication ethics standards set out by the Commission on Publication Ethics (COPE). Any cases of ethical misconduct are treated very seriously and will be dealt with in accordance with the COPE guidelines.
I. Responsibilities of the Editors
1. Reviewing Process
A. Editorial Office Assessment
The Editor-in-Chief (EIC) team will check submitted pieces based on the journal’s aims and scope as well as author guidelines. The EIC also checks that the submitted piece is appropriate for the journal and is sufficiently original and interesting. If not, the piece may be rejected without being reviewed any further.
B. Associate Editors and Reviewers
The journal has Associate Editors who handle the peer review process. The associate editors will send out invitations to reviewers (generally two reviewers). Once the review is done the decision will be submitted to the author(s), with a recommendation to accept, reject, or revise (major or minor) it.
2. Decision Making & Communication
The Associate Editors consider all reviews when making submission decisions. The editors may invite an additional reviewer if returned reviews differ significantly. The editors will evaluate manuscripts without regard to the authors' race, gender, sexual orientation, religious belief, ethnic origin, citizenship, or political philosophy. The submission decision will be based on the submission’s importance, originality and clarity, as well as validity and relevance to the journal's aims and scope. Legal requirements regarding libel and plagiarism will be upheld. Once finalized, the editors send a decision email to the author, including any relevant reviewer comments. Once published the authors will hold the copyright.
Editors and editorial staff will not disclose any information about a submission to anyone other than the corresponding author, reviewers, potential reviewers, other editorial advisers, and the publisher, as appropriate.
4. Conflicts of Interest
The editors and editorial staff will not use unpublished information related to a submission in their own research without the written permission from authors.
The editors and editorial staff will not review submission in which there are personal conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships/connections with any of the authors, companies, or institutions connected to the submissions; rather, they will ask another member of the editorial team to handle the manuscript.
II. Responsibilities of the Editorial Advisory Board
Members of the Editorial Advisory Board advise on editorial policy and strategic oversight. They also act as liaison between the journal and their home institutions.
b. Peer Review
Members of the Editorial Advisory Board are part of the journal’s pool of potential reviewers. When participating in peer review, they will conduct themselves in accordance with the responsibilities of peer reviewers.
c. Suspected Misconduct
The editors, in consultation with members of the Editorial Advisory Board, will conduct fair and responsive investigations into all ethical complaints or reports of misconduct.
III. Responsibilities of Author(s)
a. Reporting standards
Authors of original research should present an accurate account of the work performed and the results, followed by a thorough discussion of the significance of the work. The submission should contain sufficient detail and references to for readers to fully comprehend the context and processes of the work. Review articles should be accurate, fair, and comprehensive, while editorial 'opinion' or perspective pieces should be clearly identified as such. Fraudulent or knowingly inaccurate statements constitute unethical behavior and are unacceptable.
b. Originality and Plagiarism
Author(s) must certify that the submission is the original and unpublished work of the author(s) and that the submission properly and accurately references the work of others.
All authors identified in the submission must have made a significant contribution to the research. The corresponding author is responsible for ensuring that all co-authors are identified as authors when submitting the manuscript, and that all co-authors have agreed to the manuscript’s submission and approved the version for review and publication.
d. Peer Review
Author(s) must follow the conventions of peer review and cooperate fully with the editor’s requests. If the editor requests revisions and resubmission, the author(s) are expected to address the peer review feedback in a systematic manner and within the timeframe established by the editor.
e. Multiple, Redundant or Concurrent Publications
An author should not in general publish pieces describing essentially the same research in more than one journal or primary publication. Submitting the same submission to more than one journal concurrently constitutes unethical publishing behavior and is unacceptable.
f. Conflicts of Interest and Financial Disclosures
All authors should disclose in their submission any financial or other substantive conflicts of interest that might be construed to influence the results or interpretation of their piece. All sources of financial support for the project must be disclosed.
g. Data access and retention
Authors may be asked to provide the raw data in connection with submissions for editorial review and should be prepared to provide public access to such data if possible.
h. Fundamental Errors
When authors discover significant errors or inaccuracies in their own published work, it is their obligation to promptly notify the journal’s editors and cooperate with them to either correct the paper in the form of an erratum or to retract the submission. If the editors learns from a third party that a published work contains a significant error or inaccuracy, then it is the authors’ obligation to promptly correct or retract the submission or provide evidence to the journal editors of the correctness of the submission.
i. Acknowledgement of sources
Authors should ensure that they have properly acknowledged the work of others and should also cite publications that have been influential in determining the nature of the reported work. Information obtained privately (from conversation, correspondence, or discussion with third parties) must not be used or reported without explicit, written permission from the source. Authors should not use information obtained while providing confidential services, such as refereeing manuscripts or grant applications, unless they have obtained the explicit written permission of the author(s) of the work involved in these services.
IV. Responsibility of Peer Reviewers
a. Contributions to Editorial Decision
Feedback from peer reviewers is essential to the quality of research. It helps the editor make publishing decisions, assists the author(s) with improving their submissions, and upholds the integrity of the publishing process and scholarly record.
Reviewers must decline or withdraw from the review process if they lack the expertise necessary to evaluate the submission.
Reviewers are expected complete their reviews within 30 days. If reviewers cannot meet the deadline, they should inform the editor in a timely manner and withdraw from the review process.
d. Acknowledgment of Sources
Reviewers must identify any relevant published work that the author has not referenced in the submissions. Reviewers also must bring to the editor’s immediate attention any suspected ethical violation or misconduct.
Reviewers must treat every submission as privileged and confidential and refrain from discussing the materials with others.
f. Standards of Objectivity
Reviews must conduct reviews fairly and respectfully and without personal criticisms of the author. Reviewers also must support comments with evidence and/or arguments.
g. Conflicts of Interest
Reviewers will not use unpublished information related to submission in their own research without written permission from authors. Reviewers also must decline to review manuscripts in which they have conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships/connections with any of the authors, companies, or institutions connected to the papers.