Best Practices

Publication Ethics and Publication Malpractice Statement


SAR Journal follows and participate to COPE’s Best Practice Guidelines for journal editors, COPE Guidelines on publication ethics, COPE Core practices in publishing scholarly literature, WAME Recommendations on publication ethics policies for medical journals and C4DISC Joint Statement of Principles.

SAR Journal is fully dedicated in following this practices and standards:

Duties of authors:

 Reporting standards

Researchers must accurately describe their work, its importance, and the data they used. They must also provide enough detail and references that other authors can reproduce their work. Fraud and intentional misrepresentation are unethical and unacceptable. Review and professional publication articles must also be accurate and objective, and opinion pieces must be clearly labeled.

 Data access and retention

Authors of scientific papers may be requested to furnish the raw data for their paper during editorial review. This is essential to ensure the accuracy and reproducibility of the research. If possible, authors should also be prepared to make the data publicly available and accessible or to retain the data for a reasonable period of time after publication.

 Originality and plagiarism

Authors must ensure that their work is original and that all sources used are properly cited or quoted. It is permissible and highly recommended to cite or quote papers that significantly influenced the creation of the study. Plagiarism, in all its forms, including outright copying, paraphrasing without attribution, and claiming the results of others' research, is unethical and unacceptable. In the event that a paper is plagiarized, it will be retracted from publication, which can also have a detrimental impact on the authors' reputation.

 Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication

Authors of scientific papers should not submit the same manuscript to multiple journals simultaneously as this is generally considered unethical and unacceptable. The submission of the paper to multiple journals can waste the time and resources of the journals involved, and it can also lead to confusion and duplication in the scientific literature. In terms the paper is already published in a journal, a consideration of the same paper should not be sent to another journal. The authors and editors of the journals involved must agree to the secondary publication, which must reflect the same data and interpretation as the primary document. In some cases, it is acceptable to publish certain types of articles in more than one journal, but only if certain conditions as mentioned before are met. Additionally, any secondary publication must cite the original source.

 Acknowledgement of sources

Authors must always properly acknowledge the work of others by citing publications that have influenced and notably contributed to the creation of their work. When the data obtained from private conversations or discussions with third parties is used in the paper, it should contain written permission from the source. Maintaining confidentiality is paramount when handling information obtained through professional services, such as reviewing manuscripts or evaluating grant applications. Under no circumstances should this information be utilized without the express written consent of the author or creator of the work involved.

 Authorship of the paper

Authorship should be attributed to those individuals who have made substantial and direct intellectual contributions to the conceptualization, design, execution, or interpretation of the reported study. All individuals who meet this criterion should be acknowledged as co-authors. Conversely, individuals who have participated in supporting roles, such as providing data or materials, should be acknowledged or listed as contributors. The corresponding author bears the responsibility of ensuring the accurate inclusion of all appropriate co-authors and the exclusion of any inappropriate co-authors. Additionally, the corresponding author must confirm that all co-authors have reviewed and approved the final version of the manuscript and have consented to its submission for publication.

 Hazards and human or animal subjects

In the event that the research involves the use of chemicals, procedures, or equipment that pose unique hazards, the author must explicitly identify these hazards in the manuscript and provide specific details about the hazards associated. For research involving animal or human subjects, the author should ensure that the manuscript includes a statement affirming that all procedures were conducted in accordance with applicable laws and institutional guidelines and that the appropriate institutional committee(s) has granted approval. In the case of research involving human subjects, authors must include a statement in the manuscript confirming that informed consent was obtained. The privacy rights of human subjects must be respected at all times.

 Disclosure and conflicts of interest

All sources of financial support or other relevant conflict of interest that could potentially influence the results or interpretation of the work must be disclosed in the manuscript. The author should provide specific details about the conflicts of interest that they are disclosing. Examples of potential conflicts of interest that should be disclosed include employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, paid expert testimony, patent applications/registrations, and grants or other funding. Potential conflicts of interest should be disclosed at the earliest possible stage. The author should discuss the steps that they have taken to mitigate the potential for bias.

 Fundamental errors in published works

In instances where an author discovers inaccuracies or errors in their published work, they are ethically obligated to promptly notify the journal editor or publisher to initiate the retraction or correction of the paper. Conversely, if the editor or publisher learns of a significant error in a published work through a third party, the author is obligated to promptly retract or correct the paper or provide evidence to the editor supporting the correctness of the original paper. Authors should be prepared to cooperate with journal editors and publisher in correcting errors and retracting papers when necessary.

 Post-publication discussions and corrections

The journal welcomes post-publication discussions of articles that have been published in the journal. All post-publication discussions will be subject to peer review and will be published online alongside the original article. Authors should provide the following information during the submission: title of the article being discussed, authors of the article, your name and contact information, and your comments on the article. The journal editor will review the submission and may request additional information. If the submission is accepted for publication, it will be published online and linked to the original article. In certain cases, articles may be retracted if they are found to be fraudulent or with serious mistakes.

 AI author policy

Due to the rise and development of AI industry and technologies as well as their use by content creators, this particular policy came to existence with the aim of providing transparency and guidelines to all the parties involved such as authors, reviewers, editors, contributors, and readers. The following policy is solely focused on the process of writing, and it does not include the use of AI tools to analyze data and draw insights as part of the research process. The use of AI-assisted technologies should only be used to enhance the clarity and fluency of the written content. Upon generating the text the results should be reviewed as AI can generate text that can be inaccurate, incomplete, or incorrect. To ensure transparency, authors are required to disclose the use of generative AI and AI-assisted technologies in the writing process by including a dedicated statement at the end of their manuscript, prior to the References section. This statement should reside within a new section titled 'Declaration of Generative AI and AI-assisted Technologies in the Writing Process'. Statement: During the preparation of this work the author(s) used [NAME TOOL / SERVICE] in order to [REASON]. AI-assisted technologies used in the writing process should not be included in the reference list, affiliations, or as authors or co-authors of the manuscript for authorship implies duties that can only be attributed and completed by humans.

 Appeals and complaints

The journal is committed to providing a fair and transparent process for handling authors' complaints and appeals. This policy outlines the procedures that will be followed when an author submits a complaint or appeal. Authors should submit their complaints or appeals in writing to the Editorial Office which will be investigated promptly and thoroughly by the Editorial Board. Authors will receive a response to their complaint within 15 working days. If the journal determines that a complaint or appeal lacks sufficient supporting evidence, it may request additional information from the author to strengthen the appeal or complaint.
The confidentiality of all complaints and appeals will be protected. In terms that submitted complaints are unreasonable and unfounded, the journal reserves the right to dismiss or reject them.

 

Duties of editors:


 Publication decisions

The editor of a peer-reviewed journal bears the responsibility of determining which of the submitted articles will be published, often in collaboration with the relevant society (for society-owned or sponsored journals). This decision-making process must always be driven by the validity of the research and its significance to researchers and readers. The editor must adhere to the policies established by the journal's editorial board and operate within the legal constraints of libel, copyright infringement, and plagiarism. In making this decision, the editor may consult with other editors, reviewers, or society officials.

 Fair play

The assessment of manuscripts by an editor should be based solely on their intellectual merit, devoid of any personal biases or prejudices related to the authors' race, gender, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, ethnic origin, citizenship, or political ideology

UIKTEN is an adopting organisation of the C4DISC Joint Statement of Principles. Adopting the Joint Statement of Principles demonstrates our support for improving diversity and inclusion in our industry.

 Confidentiality

The editor and all editorial personnel are obligated to maintain the confidentiality of submitted manuscripts and refrain from disclosing any information regarding them to any individual beyond the corresponding author, reviewers, prospective reviewers, other editorial consultants, and the publisher, as deemed appropriate.

 Disclosure and conflicts of interest

The confidentiality of submitted, unpublished manuscripts must be strictly upheld. Editors are prohibited from utilizing the contents of these manuscripts in their own research without the authors' explicit written consent. All private information or ideas acquired through the peer-review process must be kept strictly confidential. To maintain impartiality and uphold ethical publishing standards, editors should refrain from evaluating manuscripts in which they have any conflicts of interest arising from competitive, collaborative, or other personal or institutional ties to the authors, companies, or institutions associated with the submitted work. Instead, editors should seek the assistance of co-editors, associate editors, or other members of the editorial board to conduct the review and evaluation process.
Editors should mandate the disclosure of relevant competing interests by all contributors. In the event that competing interests come to light post-publication, corrections should be issued. If necessary, further appropriate measures should be implemented, such as the publication of a retraction or an expression of concern. It is imperative that the peer-review process for sponsored supplements adheres to the same rigorous standards employed for the main journal. The selection of articles should solely be determined by their scientific value and their potential to engage and inform readers, without any consideration of the financial interests of the sponsor. Non-peer reviewed sections of their journal should be clearly identified.

 Peer review

The duties of an editor are to select suitable, experienced, and relevant reviewers that can significantly contribute to the quality of manuscripts. Additionally, they should ensure that reviewers are sufficiently advised regarding their journals’ ethics and publishing policies. Reviewers should possess adequate education and expertise. Editors are obliged to inform reviewers of their responsibilities, duties, and obligations. Editor should critically examine all disclosures of potential conflicts of interest and suggestions for self-citation made by reviewers to ascertain whether any potential for bias exists.
In the peer review process, editors should prioritize impartiality, fairness, and timeliness to maintain the credibility and effectiveness of the process. In general, research articles undergo review by a minimum of two external and independent reviewers, with the editor possessing the authority to seek additional expert opinions as needed.

 The use of generative AI and AI-assisted technologies in the journal editorial process

Editors and reviewers should critically evaluate the appropriateness and integration of generative AI and AI-assisted technologies to ensure the accuracy and validity of the generated content. Editors and reviewers must maintain the confidentiality of the peer-review process. Editors must refrain from sharing, commenting about the manuscript, or uploading information about submitted manuscripts or peer-review reports even in terms of improving language and readability with generative AI technologies as this may violate authors’ confidentiality or privacy rights.
Editors are responsible for the editorial process, making final decisions, and communicating with authors. They must adhere to privacy and confidentiality regulations during manuscript evaluation, as this process is inherently human-centric. When evaluating, assessing, or making critical judgements regarding a manuscript, editors should refrain from employing AI-assisted technologies.
Since authors are permitted to employ AI and AI-assisted technologies solely for enhancing language and readability of their papers, editors must exercise caution when handling such manuscripts. Should an editor have any reason to suspect that an author or reviewer has breached the established policies, they are obligated to notify the publisher.

 Involvement and cooperation in investigations

Editors should ensure that the journal has a process for investigating allegations of misconduct. This process should be fair and impartial, and should protect the rights of all parties involved. Editors should also be aware of the journal's policies on research misconduct, and should take appropriate action in response to confirmed cases of misconduct. In situations where ethical complaints have been presented regarding a submitted manuscript or already published paper, editors should take responsive measures. The investigation should involve contacting the author of the manuscript in question and carefully considering the complaints. If the allegation is serious enough to justify a more thorough investigation, the journal may engage in additional communications with relevant institutions and research bodies. In instances where the complaint is substantiated, the journal should publish a correction, retraction, expression of concern, or other appropriate notice. The journal's commitment to ethical publishing extends beyond the initial publication date, requiring vigilance in addressing allegations of misconduct, even those brought to light years after the original publication.

 Data sharing and reproducibility

The editors must ensure that articles submitted meet the journal's reproducibility standards. During the review process, editors may ask authors to provide additional information about their methods, data, or make their code or other computational tools available for review. The journal editor will review all manuscripts for compliance with the data sharing and reproducibility requirements. Authors who do not comply with these requirements will be asked to revise their manuscripts. If the author is unable or unwilling to revise their manuscript, it may be rejected for publication.

 Post-publication discussions and corrections

Editors serve as crucial facilitators of post-publication discussions and corrections, ensuring the integrity and accuracy of the scientific record. They are responsible for reviewing letters, comments, and new research articles that challenge or support the original findings. Editors also make the final decision on whether or not to publish a correction.

 Publication ethics

Publishers and editors bear a responsibility to uphold the highest standards of ethical conduct in scientific research. This includes taking proactive measures to identify and prevent the publication of papers where research misconduct was identified. A journal or its editors must not encourage or facilitate such misconduct. Upon receiving an allegation of research misconduct, the publisher or editor must take appropriate action to investigate the allegation and address it promptly and effectively. Journals should establish clear guidelines for retracting or correcting articles when necessary. Publishers and editors should demonstrate a commitment to transparency and accountability by readily publishing corrections, clarifications, retractions, and apologies when warranted.

 

Duties of reviewers :

 Contribution to editorial decisions

Peer review is essential part of scholarly communication and plays a critical role in ensuring the quality and integrity of scientific research. By providing independent and expert evaluations of manuscripts, peer reviews aid editors in making editorial decisions and contribute to the authors’ improvement of their work through editorial communications. Peer review fosters a culture of rigorous scrutiny and promotes transparency in the dissemination of knowledge. SAR Journal shares the widely held belief that all scholars who benefit from the publication of their research have a responsibility to contribute to the peer review process. This reciprocal exchange of expertise ensures the sustainability of the scientific community and the advancement of knowledge.

 Promptness

Any selected reviewer who deems themselves lacking the necessary qualifications or expertise to evaluate the manuscript or anticipates an inability to provide a timely review should promptly notify the editor and request to be excused from the review process.

 Confidentiality

All submitted manuscripts are subject to a strict confidentiality policy. Information contained within or concerning the review of manuscripts must not be disclosed to any unauthorized individuals without the prior written consent of the journal editor. Reviewers are prohibited from directly contacting the authors without the express permission of the journal.

 Standards of objectivity

During the review process, reviewers must maintain objectivity and impartiality, avoiding any personal criticism of the author. Their evaluations should be clearly articulated and supported by well-reasoned arguments. In terms there is a potential conflict of interest between reviewers and authors or institutions connected to the manuscripts it should be disclosed before agreeing to review the paper..

 The use of generative AI and AI-assisted technologies in the journal peer review process

Reviewers should critically evaluate the appropriateness and integration of generative AI and AI-assisted technologies to ensure the accuracy and validity of the generated content. Reviewers must maintain the confidentiality of the peer-review process and refrain from sharing, commenting about the manuscript, or uploading information about submitted manuscripts or peer-review reports even in terms of improving language and readability with generative AI technologies as this may violate authors’ confidentiality or privacy rights.
When evaluating, assessing, or making critical judgements regarding a manuscript, reviewers should refrain from employing AI-assisted technologies. Since authors are permitted to employ AI and AI-assisted technologies solely for enhancing language and readability of their papers, reviewers must exercise caution when handling such manuscripts. Should a reviewer have any reason to suspect that an author has breached the established policies, they are obligated to notify the editor or publisher.

 Acknowledgement of sources

All statements, observations, or ideas that are not the original work of the author must be accompanied by source citation. Reviewers are responsible for identifying any statements, observations, or ideas that are not properly cited and informing the author of these issues. If there is any overlap or similarity between the manuscripts being reviewed and any previously published articles, the reviewers should notify the editors of this issue immediately.

 Disclosure and conflict of interest

The confidentiality of submitted, unpublished manuscripts must be strictly upheld. Reviewers are prohibited from utilizing the contents of these manuscripts in their own research without the authors' explicit written consent. All private information or ideas acquired through the peer-review process must be kept strictly confidential. To uphold ethical publishing standards, reviewers should refrain from evaluating manuscripts in which they have any conflicts of interest arising from competitive, collaborative, or other personal or institutional ties to the authors, companies, or institutions associated with the submitted work.

 Post-publication discussions and corrections

Reviewers perform a critical task in post-publication discussions and corrections by providing their expertise and insights to ensure the accuracy and integrity of the scientific record. Their involvement extends beyond the initial peer-review process, extending into the post-publication phase to address any emerging issues or concerns. Reviewers carefully examine letters to the editor, comments, and new research articles that challenge or support the original findings. They assess the validity of the arguments, identify potential errors, evaluate the relevance of the contributions, and provide opinions on the post-publication discussions. They can identify potential limitations in the original study and suggest alternative interpretations of the data. Upon completion of the assessment process they provide the results and recommendations to the journal editors.
Reviewers uphold the principles of scientific integrity by ensuring that post-publication discussions are conducted in a fair, unbiased, and rigorous manner. Reviewers must maintain confidentiality of any sensitive information they encounter during the post-publication review process and protect the privacy of authors, reviewers, and other individuals involved.

 

Corrections & Retractions

The UIKTEN will issue corrections, retraction statements, and other post-publication updates including Editor’s Notes and Editorial Expressions of Concern on published content.

The following categories apply to corrections and post-publication updates for peer-reviewed primary research and review articles, as well as certain types of non-peer-reviewed articles. Any significant errors found in Supplementary Information or Extended Data are corrected in the same way as changes made to the main article itself. With the exception of Editor's Notes, all the categories listed below are linked back to the original article and are indexed in online databases.

Author Correction: A correction to a published article might be issued if the authors made a significant mistake that impacts the article's scientific accuracy, the authors' reputation, or the journal's reputation.

Author Name Change: Authors with a name change can request correction on their published works for accurate attribution. This policy applies to all papers published in SAR Journal due to several reasons, such as: Marriage or divorce, religious conversion, or other personal reasons.

Publisher Correction: To ensure the accuracy and integrity of the scholarly record, publisher corrections are employed to address critical mistakes made by the journal that impact the scientific validity of the published article, the authors' publication history, or the reputation of both the authors and the journal.

Addendum: In instances where significant new information emerges after publication of an article, which proves essential for readers to fully understand the research, an addendum can be published to address this gap in knowledge. Addenda clarify articles by providing important information initially missed. They may be reviewed and require editor approval. Only critical addenda related to the article content are rarely published.

Editor's Note: To ensure readers are informed about potential issues with a published article, the journal may add an online-only editor’s note to the HTML version. This note indicates the journal is investigating concerns raised about the research and is not indexed by search engines, ensuring transparency without compromising the integrity of the academic record.

Editorial Expression of Concern: An editorial expression of concern (EEoC) is a public statement issued by the editors of a scientific journal. This statement informs readers about potential problems that raise serious concerns about the integrity of the published paper. EEoCs are digital documents published on the same platform as the original research paper, with a direct link between the two. Additionally, each EEoC is assigned a unique DOI for easy reference and tracking.

Retraction: When a research article contains serious errors in its research design, data analysis, reporting, or when it violates publication or research ethics, it may be retracted. However, retracted articles are not removed from the SAR Journal. Instead, they remain available with a clear and prominent notice of retraction. This aligns with the COPE retraction guidelines, which ensure transparency and inform readers about the article's withdrawn status.

Correction: In the majority of cases, when corrections are made to research articles, the original article in both PDF and HTML formats is corrected and linked bi-directionally to and from the published amendment notice. This amendment notice details the nature of the original error and the specific changes made to the article. In the interest of transparency, when changes made to the original article affect data presented in figures, tables, or text (e.g., data points, error bars, or curves require redrawing) the amendment notice will reproduce the original data alongside the corrected version. However, in certain circumstances, it may not be possible to correct the original article in both HTML and PDF versions. This may occur in situations when articles are published many years before the error is identified. In such cases, the original article will remain unchanged yet it will be clearly linked bi-directionally to and from the published amendment notice, ensuring that readers are aware of the error and its implications for the research.

 

Journal article versions:

An Author's Original Manuscript (AoM), also known as a Preprint, is the complete, unedited version of a research paper that an author submits to a journal for publication, before it has undergone peer review.

An Accepted Manuscript (AAM), also known as a Postprint, is the final version of a research paper that has been accepted for publication by a journal after peer review. This version includes all changes made by the author in response to comments of the reviewers, yet it does not include any editing, typesetting, or formatting changes made by the journal.

The Final Published Version, also known as the Version of Record, is the final, polished version of a research paper. This version has undergone peer review, editing, typesetting, and formatting by the publisher. It also includes any additional tagging, indexing, and enhancements applied by the publisher.

The Version of Record refers to the final, published version of an article. This includes any post publication corrections, improvements, or other changes made by UIKTEN and/or its licensors.