INCENT trusts its editors, who in turn trust peer-reviewers to provide fair assessments, and authors trust editors to select appropriate peer-reviewers, and readers put their trust in the peer-review process. Academic publishing also occurs in an environment of powerful intellectual, financial, and sometimes political interests that may collide or compete.
Our editors and readers have a right to expect that submitted work is the author's own, that it has not been plagiarised, i.e. taken from other authors without permission where required, and that copyright has not been breached, e.g. if figures or tables are reproduced.
INCENT expects authors to maintain the highest ethical standards when conducting research and in the publication process. The following principles, which are not an exhaustive list, should apply:
Soundness and reliability
The research being reported should:
• be conducted in an ethical and responsible manner and follow all relevant legislation;
• be sound and carefully executed; and
• use appropriate methods of data analysis and display.
The author(s) should:
• check their manuscripts carefully at all stages to ensure that methods and findings are reported accurately; and
• carefully check calculations, data presentations,
typescripts/submissions and proofs.
• present their results honestly and without fabrication, falsification or inappropriate data manipulation;
• present research images, e.g. micrographs, X-rays, pictures of electrophoresis gels, without them being modified in a misleading way;
• follow applicable reporting guidelines;
• provide sufficient detail and describe their methods clearly and unambiguously and with reference to public sources of information, in order to permit others to repeat the work and confirm the findings. Data should always be reported accurately and never be manipulated, with any problematic data also treated accordingly;
• present reports of complete research. They should not omit inconvenient, inconsistent or inexplicable findings or results that do not support the authors’ or sponsors’ hypothesis or interpretation;
• alert the editor promptly if they discover an error in any submitted, accepted or published work. Authors should cooperate with editors in issuing corrections or retractions when required;
• represent the work of others accurately in citations and quotations;
• not copy references from other publications if they have not read the cited work; and
• identify any hazards inherent in conducting the research.
• Researchers should not enter agreements that permit the research sponsor to veto or control the publication of the findings (unless there are exceptional circumstances, such as research classified by governments because of security implications).
• If investigations have involved animals or human subjects, authors should provide all the statements required by the journal in order to prove that the experimental protocols were approved appropriately and that they meet all the guidelines of the agency involved, including obtaining informed consent where required.
• Information obtained privately should not be used without the explicit permission of the individuals from whom it was obtained, and appropriate letters confirming permission to include this information must be acquired.
• present new findings in the context of previous research. The work of others should be fairly represented. Scholarly reviews and syntheses of existing research should be complete, balanced, and should include findings regardless of whether they support the hypothesis or interpretation being proposed. Editorials or opinion pieces presenting a single viewpoint or argument should be clearly distinguished from scholarly reviews;
• address study limitations in their manuscript; and
• avoid criticisms of a personal nature, although well-supported criticism of a piece of work is always welcomed
• adhere to the accepted publication requirements that submitted work should be original and has not been published elsewhere in any language without express citation and acknowledgement of the previously published work;
• adhere to and follow all applicable copyright laws and conventions. Copyright material, e.g. tables, figures or extensive quotations, should be reproduced only with appropriate permission and acknowledgement;
• properly acknowledge and reference relevant previous work and publications, both by other researchers and the authors’ own. The primary literature should be cited where possible;
• properly acknowledge data, text, figures or ideas originated by other researchers, and these should not be presented as if they were the authors’ own work. Original wording taken directly from publications by other researchers should appear in quotation marks with the appropriate citations;
• inform editors if findings have been published previously or if multiple reports or multiple analyses of a single data set are under consideration for publication elsewhere. Authors should provide copies of related publications or work submitted to other books/journals; and
• not claim originality if others have already reported similar work in part or as a whole, and credit should always be given to the work and findings of others that have led to their findings or influenced them in some way. .
Special notes: .
• Multiple publications arising from a single research project should be clearly identified as such and the primary publication should be referenced. Translations and adaptations for different audiences should be clearly identified as such, should acknowledge the original source, and should respect relevant copyright conventions and permission requirements. If in doubt, authors should seek permission from the original publisher before republishing any work.
• Avoid fragmenting research to maximise the number of articles submitted (also known as ‘salami publishing’) to a journal, and the submission of the same research to multiple books/journals or other publication media (also known as parallel publishing). Both these practices seriously undermine the innovative nature of research findings .
INCENT promotes ethical and responsible research practices: .
• Authors should provide evidence that research has adhered to national standards for research practices (in human and animal studies).
• Authors should provide evidence that studies have been approved by relevant bodies, the relevant research ethics committee or institutional review board, e.g. institutional review board, research ethics committee, data and safety monitoring board, and regulatory authorities including those overseeing animal experiments.
• If human participants were involved manuscripts must be accompanied by a statement that the experiments were undertaken with the understanding and appropriate informed consent of each.
• If experimental animals were used the materials and methods (experimental procedures) section must clearly indicate that appropriate measures were taken to minimise pain or discomfort, and details of animal care should be provided.
• Editors should encourage peer-reviewers to consider ethical issues raised by the research they are reviewing.
• Editors should request additional information from authors if they feel this is required.
• Editors reserve the right to reject manuscripts if there is doubt whether appropriate procedures have been followed.
• If a manuscript has been submitted from a country where there is no ethics committee, institutional review board, or similar review and approval, editors should use their own experience to judge whether the manuscripts should be published. If the decision is made to publish a manuscript under these circumstances, a short statement should be included to explain the situation.
• Where individual human subjects or case studies are discussed, e.g. as in medicine, psychology, criminology, books/journals should protect confidentiality and should not permit publication of items that might upset or harm participants/subjects, or breach confidentiality of, for example, the doctor-patient relationship.
• INCENT will not publish individual information and identifiable images from patients/human subjects. We will also require explicit consent from any patients described in case studies or shown in photographs.
In most cases editors should only consider publishing information and images from individual participants/subjects or patients where the authors have obtained the individuals’ explicit consent. Exceptional cases may arise where gaining the individuals’ explicit consent is not possible but where publishing such information or image can be demonstrated to have a genuine public health interest. In cases like this, before taking any action, editors should seek and follow counsel from the journal owner, INCENT and/or legal professionals
In the case of technical images (for example, radiographs, micrographs), editors should ensure that all information that could identify the subject has been removed from the image.
Plagiarism is when an author attempts to pass off someone else's work as his or her own. Duplicate publication, sometimes called self-plagiarism, occurs when an author reuses substantial parts of his or her own published work without providing the appropriate references. This can range from having an identical manuscript published in multiple books/journals, to 'salami-slicing', where authors add small amounts of new data to a previous manuscript.
The editorial board is very strict regarding plagiarism. The journal believes that taking the ideas and work of others without giving them credit is unfair and dishonest. Copying even one sentence from someone else's manuscript, or even
one of your own that has previously been published, without proper citation is considered plagiarism-use your own words instead. The editorial board retains the absolute authority to reject the review process of a submitted manuscript if it subject to minor or major plagiarism and even may cancel the publication upon the complaint of victim(s) of plagiarism.
Plagiarism can be said to have clearly occurred when large chunks of text have been cut and pasted. Such manuscripts would not be considered for publication in AJOEBS. However, minor plagiarism without dishonest intent is relatively frequent, for example when an author reuses parts of an introduction from an earlier manuscript. AJOEBS editors judge any case of which they become aware (either by their own knowledge of and reading about the literature, or when alerted by referees) on its own merits.
If a case of plagiarism comes to light after a manuscript is published in AJOEBS, the journal will conduct a preliminary investigation. If plagiarism is found, the journal will contact the author's institute and funding agencies. A determination of misconduct will lead the AJOEBS to publish a corrigendum linked to the original publication, with an explanation. Depending on the extent of the plagiarism, the manuscript may also be formally retracted.
In the case of journals that choose to publish supplements, special issues, sections, or similar materials that are funded by a third-party organisation, e.g. a company, society or charity – the supporter or sometimes sponsor, the content of funded items must align with the purpose of the journal. They must also include:
• explicit declaration of conflicts of interest or absence thereof for all contributions, including those of authors, editors and co-editors;
• explicit acknowledgement of any contributions (for example, editorial assistance) made by anyone other than named authors, including their affiliations;
• description of the processes used to select, review and edit the content, especially the differences in this process (if any) from the journal's normal content selection and peer-review processes; and
• details of the journal's affiliations and Editorial Board.
Journals that choose to publish supplements should appoint co-editors (including the individual who proposed the initial idea for the funded material and a second individual appointed by the journal) as standard procedure for all funded materials. This enables editorial decisions to be easily deputised, as should be the case when one editor is an author or is acknowledged as a contributor of a particular article, or when one editor is presented with manuscripts where their own interests may impair their ability to make an unbiased editorial decision. A short statement explaining the process used to make editorial decisions must be included in the editorial of such an issue.
Journals should not permit funding organisations to make decisions beyond those about which publications they choose to fund and the extent of the funding. Decisions about the selection of authors and about the selection and editing of contents to be presented in funded publications should be made by the editor (or co-editors) of the funded publication.
INCENT reserves the right not to publish any funded publication that does not comply with the requirements defined for the journal to which the manuscript or supplement has been submitted.NEXT