Ethics Statement


The following guidelines are in accordance to (Committee on Publication Ethics) COPE’s guidelines.


  • Editors are accountable and should take responsibility for everything they publish

Editor should:

  • make fair and unbiased decisions independent from commercial consideration and ensure a fair and appropriate reviewing process
  • adopt editorial policies that encourage maximum transparency and complete honest reporting
  • guard the integrity of the published record by issuing corrections and retractions when needed and report suspected or alleged research and publication misconduct
  • report any reviewer's and editorials' misconduct
  • critically assess the ethical conduct of studies in humans and animals
  • maintain appropriate policies in place for handling editorial conflicts of interest
  • reviewers and authors should be told what is expected of them

Best practice for editors would include

  1. actively seeking the views of authors, readers, reviewers and editorial board members about ways of improving their journal’s processes.
  2. encouraging and being aware of research into peer review and publishing and reassessing their journal’s processes in the light of new findings.
  3. working to persuade their publisher to provide appropriate resources, guidance from experts.  
  4. supporting initiatives designed to reduce research and publication misconduct. 
  5. supporting initiatives to educate researchers about publication ethics.
  6. assessing the effects of their journal policies on author and reviewer behaviour and revising policies, as required, to encourage responsible behaviour and discourage misconduct.
  7. ensuring that any press releases issued by their journal reflect the message of the reported article and put it into context.

Relations with authors

  1. Editors’ decisions to accept or reject a paper for publication should be based on the paper’s importance, originality and clarity, and the study’s validity and its relevance to the remit of the journal.
  2. Editors should not reverse decisions to accept submissions unless serious problems are identified with the submission.
  3. New editors should not overturn decisions to publish submissions made by the previous editor unless serious problems are identified.
  4. A description of reviewing processes should be published, and editors should be ready to justify any important deviation from the described processes.
  5. Journals should have a declared mechanism for authors to appeal against editorial decisions.
  6. Editors should publish guidance to authors on everything that is expected of them. This guidance should be regularly updated and should refer or link to this code.
  7. Editors should provide guidance about criteria for authorship and/or who should be listed as a contributor following the standards within the relevant field.

Best practice

  • Reviewing author instructions regularly and providing links to relevant guidelines.
  • Publishing relevant competing interests for all contributors and publishing corrections if competing interests are revealed after publication.
  • Ensuring that appropriate reviewers are selected for revisions.
  • Respecting requests from authors that an individual should not review their submission, if these are well reasoned and practicable.


  • The research being reported should be conducted in an ethical and responsible manner and should comply with all relevant legislation.

Authors should:

  • present their results clearly, honestly, and without fabrication, falsification or inappropriate data manipulation
  • strive to describe their methods clearly and unambiguously so that their findings can be confirmed by others
  • adhere to publication requirements that submitted work is original, is not plagiarised, and has not been published elsewhere
  • take collective responsibility for submitted and published work
  • the authorship of research publications should accurately reflect individuals’ contributions to the work and its reporting
  • funding sources and relevant conflicts of interest should be disclosed

Fundamental errors in published works

When authors discover significant errors or inaccuracies in their own published work, it is their obligation to promptly notify the journal’s editors or publisher and cooperate with them to either correct the paper in the form of an erratum or to retract the paper. If the editors or publisher 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 paper or provide evidence to the journal editors of the correctness of the paper.



Review in all its form plays an important role in ensuring the integrity of the scholarly record. The process depends to a large extent on trust, and requires that everyone involved behaves responsibly and ethically. Reviewers play a central and critical part in the review process, but too often come to the role without any guidance and may be unaware of their ethical obligations.

The COPE Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers set out the basic principles and standards to which all reviewers should adhere during the review process. It is hoped that they will provide helpful guidance to researchers, be a reference for journals and editors in guiding their reviewers, and act as an educational resource for institutions in training their students and researchers.

The following are key points to consider:

  • Reviewers play an important role in ensuring the integrity of the scholarly record.
  • The review process depends to a large extent on the trust and willing participation of the scholarly community and requires that everyone involved behaves responsibly and ethically.
  • Journals have an obligation to provide transparent policies for review process, and reviewers have an obligation to conduct reviews in an ethical and accountable manner.
  • Clear communication between the journal and the reviewers is essential to facilitate consistent, fair and timely review. 
  • Review, for the purposes of these guidelines, refers to reviews provided on manuscript submissions to journals, but can also include reviews for other platforms and apply to public commenting that can occur pre- or post-publication.
  • The model of review process will also influence elements of the process.

Based on COPE’s Ethical Guidelines, reviewers should/must:

  • act responsibly
  • be free of competing interests
  • response within the timeframe
  • follow all the steps that have been outlined
  • respect the confidentiality of the author
  • be on alert of any ethical violation



Handling of unethical publishing behaviour

In cases of alleged or proven publication misconduct, fraud or plagiarism; the publisher, in close collaboration with the editors, will take all appropriate measures to clarify the situation and to amend the article in question. This includes the prompt publication of an erratum, clarification or, in the most severe case, the retraction of article. The publisher, together with the editors, shall take reasonable steps to identify and prevent the publication of articles where research misconduct has occurred, and under no circumstances encourage such misconduct or knowingly allow such misconduct to take place.

Access to journal content

The publisher is committed to the permanent availability and preservation of scholarly research and ensures accessibility and maintaining our own digital archive.