PUBLISHING ETHICS


Based on:
http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/intro.cws_home/publishing
http://www.elsevier.com/ethicalguidelines

Duties of Authors


Reporting standards
Authors of original research should:
-    accurately present their study, with sufficient details and references, so to allow other authors to replicate the study;
-    offer an objective discussion of the significance of their study;
-    accurately present the data on which their study is based on;
-    avoid any kind of fraudulent and inaccurate statements, which are considered unethical and unacceptable.
Reviews should be:
-    accurate and objective
-    editorial standpoints – clearly specified.


Data access and retention
Authors may be asked to:
- provide for editorial review the raw data on which their paper is based on,
- agree to offer public access to such data (consistent with the ALPSP-STM Statement on Data and Databases).


Originality and plagiarism
Plagiarism means:
-    copying/paraphrasing considerable parts of another author’s work, without attribution
-    claim the results obtained by other authors
-    pass off another person’s paper as one’s own,

Consequently, authors should:
-    guarantee that their work is entirely original
-    guarantee that if used the work of other authors, these have been appropriately cited and quoted.


Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication
Authors should:
Not publish papers describing basically the same research in more than one journal or publication. The act of submitting the same paper in more than one journal is considered unethical, thus unacceptable.
Exceptions are represented by specific guidelines, translations, etc. In such cases, both authors and editors must agree to the secondary publication, which should be consistent with the contents of the primary document (correctly cited in the secondary document). Further detail on acceptable forms of secondary publication can be found at www.icmje.org

Acknowledgement of sources
Authors must:
-    properly acknowledge the work of others – cite all the publications that have influenced the reported work;
-    confidential information may not be used without the explicit written permission of the person involved;
-    information obtained informally, in private conversations, correspondence, etc., may not be used without the explicit written permission of the person involved.

Authorship of the paper
Authorship should include all those who have had a significant contribution to the study (design, conception, execution, etc.), and should be listed as co-authors. Other participants with less significant contribution should be acknowledged or listed as contributors. All co-authors included in the paper have to approve the final version and agree to its submission for publication. 


Hazards and human or animal subjects
Authors have the obligation to clearly specify if their research involves anything that may represent hazard (chemicals, substances, dangerous procedures, etc).
If the study is conducted on animal or human subjects, the authors have to mention in the manuscript that they have obtained the informed consent for experimentation with the participants (privacy rights of human subjects must always be noted), and that the applied procedures were in accordance with relevant laws and institutional guidelines, approved by an the appropriate institutional committee(s).


Disclosure and conflicts of interest
Authors must:
-    report all sources of financial support
-    report as soon as possible all sources of possible financial or otherwise conflict of interest (employment, ownership, honoraria, grants/funding, etc.), determined by the obtained results or their interpretation.


Fundamental errors in published works
In case an author would discover a significant error/inaccuracy in his/her own already published work, the author is obliged to announce the journal editor/publisher and collaborate in correcting or retracting the published work.
In case the editor/publisher finds out about an error from a third person, he/she is supposed to notify the author(s), who should promptly contribute to correct the paper or retract it, or offer concrete proofs about the correctness of the original manuscript.

Duties of editors
These guidelines are based on existing Elsevier policies and COPE’s Best Practice Guidelines for Journal Editors.


Publication decisions
The (guest)editor of a peer-reviewed journal is responsible for deciding the content of each issue (which articles will be published).
The editor may be assisted by the journal’s editorial board. The editor’s decisions are constrained by legal requirements regarding: libel, copyright infringement and plagiarism.

Fair play
Editors should evaluate papers for their intellectual content and added value to knowledge, without regard: to race, gender, sexual orientation, religious belief, ethnic origin, citizenship, or political philosophy of the authors.


Confidentiality
The editor and the editorial staff are not supposed to disclose any information about a submitted manuscript to anyone other than the corresponding author, reviewers, potential reviewers, other editorial advisers, and the publisher.


Disclosure and conflicts of interest
-    Materials unpublished in a submitted paper cannot be used by the editor for personal research without the written consent of the author.
-    Privileged information/ideas offered by peer review must be kept confidential and not used for personal advantage.
-    The peer-review process for sponsored supplements (accepted solely on the basis of academic merit and interest to readers) should be the same as that applied for the main journal, and should not be influenced by commercial considerations.
-    Non-peer reviewed sections of their journal should be clearly identified. 


Journal Self Citation
Editors should not influence (oblige) authors to cite his/her journal. Any recommendations for citation should be based on the basis of relevance.
Involvement and cooperation in investigations

When confronted with ethical complaints regarding a submitted or published paper, the editor, together with the publisher, is supposed to take measures, as: contacting the author in order to signal the complaint. In case it is necessary, the editor should also contact relevant institutions in order to correct, retract, etc. the publication. Unethical publishing must be investigated, even if it is discovered years later.
For more details, please consult    Publishing Ethics Resource Kit (PERK)

Duties of reviewers 


Contribution to editorial decisions
Peer review assists: the editor in the editorial decisions, and the author in improving the paper. 


Promptness
Any referee who feels that is not sufficiently competent to review the research reported in a manuscript or cannot review it in due time, should notify the editor and excuse him/herself from the review process.


Confidentiality
All manuscripts submitted for review must be treated as confidential documents.

Standards of objectivity
Reviews should be:
-    conducted objectively
-    referees should present their views as clearly as possible, argumenting their statements
-    personal disproval/criticism of the author is inappropriate.

Acknowledgement of sources
Reviewers should identify:
-    all publications used, but not cited by the author (missing references),
-    mention to the editor any substantial similarity between the manuscript submitted for publication and an already published paper

Disclosure and conflict of interest
Submitted but unpublished manuscripts should not be used by the reviewer for his/her own research, without the written consent of the author. Information disclosed in submitted manuscripts should be kept confidential and not used in any kind of personal advantage. Manuscripts involving conflicts of interest should not be considered for review.