- The research/review being reported should have been 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.
- Authors should strive to describe their methods clearly and unambiguously so that their findings can be confirmed by others.
- Authors should adhere to publication requirements that submitted work is original, is not plagiarised, and has not been published elsewhere.
- Authors should 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
- Editors are accountable and should take responsibility for everything they publish
- Editors should make fair and unbiased decisions independent from commercial consideration and ensure a fair and appropriate peer review process
- Editors should adopt editorial policies that encourage maximum transparency and complete, honest reporting
- Editors should guard the integrity of the published record by issuing corrections and retractions when needed and pursuing suspected or alleged research and publication misconduct
- Editors should pursue reviewer and editorial misconduct
- Editors should critically assess the ethical conduct of studies in humans and animals
- Peer reviewers and authors should be told what is expected of them
- Editors should have appropriate policies in place for handling editorial conflicts of interest
C. Peer Reviewers
- Only agree to review manuscripts for which they have the subject expertise required to carry out a proper assessment and which they can assess in a timely manner
- Respect the confidentiality of peer review and not reveal any details of a manuscript or its review, during or after the peer-review process, beyond those that are released by the journal
- Not use information obtained during the peer-review process for their own or any other person’s or organization’s advantage, or to disadvantage or discredit others
- Declare all potential conflicting interests, seeking advice from the journal if they are unsure whether something constitutes a relevant interest
- Not allow their reviews to be influenced by the origins of a manuscript, by the nationality, religious or political beliefs, gender or other characteristics of the authors, or by commercial considerations
- Be objective and constructive in their reviews, refraining from being hostile or inflammatory and from making libellous or derogatory personal comments
- Acknowledge that peer review is largely a reciprocal endeavour and undertake to carry out their fair share of reviewing and in a timely manner
- Provide journals with personal and professional information that is accurate and a true representation of their expertise
- Recognize that impersonation of another individual during the review process is considered serious misconduct
Based on COPE’s Ethical Guidelines