In March 2019, OAE officially became a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). This document describes the standard editorial norms that Sleep & Exercise (SE) should jointly comply with; illustrates the scope of responsibility and right of different roles in the process of academic publishing, including authors, reviewers, the Editor-in-Chief, the Associate Editors, the Editorial Board members, Guest Editors, and in-house Editors; and clarifies the handling of publication misconduct. This document is based on the guidelines of COPE, World Association of medical Editors (WAME), and International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE).
We uphold the high standards publication and expect research published by SE to abide by the principles of COPE in promoting integrity in scholarly research and its publication.
These principles cover:
In addition to the general principles above, our journal editorial team also provide specific guidelines and policies for authors on research integrity and ethics appropriate to their subject matter and discipline. Anyone who believes that research published by SE has not been carried out in line with these Research Publishing Ethics Guidelines, or the above principles, should raise their concern with the relevant Editor or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Concerns will be addressed by COPE guidelines where possible and/or by escalating the matter to OAE Ethics Committee if necessary.
We are committed to editorial independence and strive in all cases to prevent this principle from being compromised through conflicts of interest, fear, or any other corporate, business, financial or political influence. Our editorial processes reflect this commitment to editorial independence. We do not discriminate against authors, Editors, or peer reviewers based on personal characteristics or identity.
All articles published by SE are assessed by our independent Editorial Boards. The editorial office staff are not involved in decisions to accept manuscripts. When making a decision, we expect the academic Editor (the Editor-in-Chief or an Associate Editor) to make it based solely upon:
The suitability of selected reviewers;
Adequacy of reviewer comments and author response;
Scientific excellence and originality;
Overall scientific quality of the paper.
We do not tolerate abusive behavior or correspondence towards our staff and others involved in the publishing process on our behalf. If anyone involved in this process engages in such behavior we have the right to take action to protect others from this abuse. This may include, for example, withdrawal of a manuscript from consideration or challenging abusive peer review comments.
SE operates a rigorous peer-review process. In most cases, this is a single-blind assessment with at least two independent reviewers, followed by a final acceptance/rejection decision by the Editor-in-Chief. The Editor-in-Chief is responsible for the academic quality of the publication process, including final decisions and approval of Guest Editors, Special Issue topics, and new Editorial Board members. A summary of the editorial process can be found at Editorial Process.
The following types of articles submitted to SE will be peer-reviewed: Original Article, Review, Case Report, Meta-analysis, Systematic Review, Technical Note. Other submitted articles are not usually peer-reviewed. For any questions or comments about the peer-review process, please contact the Managing Editor. Regarding questions about a specific manuscript, authors can contact the Editor who is handling the manuscript directly.
All submitted manuscripts are processed in our online manuscript system: MESAs which follows international publishing standards specified by COPE, ICMJE, and WAME. Peer reviewers can download articles and upload their review comments. For any technical problems met in the process, reviewers can contact the Managing Editor directly.
In general, every accepted manuscript means the paper must be of high quality, which should have originality, provide strong evidence for its conclusions, and be of great importance to researchers and interesting to readers in the related field.
The editorial office encourage commentary on published research as necessary to advance scientific discourse, which may also involve challenges, clarifications, etc.
All manuscripts will be uploaded to the most trusted plagiarism checker, iThenticate, for similarity check. Typically, the similarity rate of a manuscript should not exceed 30%.
Only the papers that meet our editorial criteria can be sent for formal peer-review. Submissions of insufficient interest or poor quality will be rejected promptly by Editors without undergoing external review.
Typically, two review reports are required for each manuscript in external review. In the case of the two review reports that are highly controversial, the third review report will be collected. In these review reports, reviewers are expected to provide the Editors with a decision together with detailed comments and provide the authors with specific suggestions on revision.
Based on reviewers' comments, after careful consideration, the Editor-in-Chief will make possible decisions as below:
Reviewers' criticisms will be taken seriously. When reviewers disagree with each other, or the authors claim their research is misunderstood, we will further ask for advice from related reviewers or additional reviewers.
We respect reviewers' willingness or unwillingness to review subsequent revisions. Also, the Assistant Editor will not send revisions to reviewers if the authors have not addressed the comments seriously.
Reviewer selection is very critical in the publication process. When selecting a reviewer, we consider many factors, including expertise, reputation, recommendations, and our previous experience of reviewers. A reviewer who is quick, responsible, and can provide useful comments for papers is preferred and will be added in our reviewer database. Meanwhile, authors can request that the Editors exclude one or two individuals or laboratories. The Editors will seriously consider their requests and usually respect them, but Editors make the final decision on the choice of referees. In the process, we keep in mind the confidentiality of manuscripts.
General reviewer criteria of SE are as follows:
The peer-review process is single-blind peer review for SE. We do not release reviewers' identities to authors or other reviewers unless they voluntarily sign their comments to the authors. Generally, we ask reviewers not to identify themselves to authors in their review reports without the Editor's knowledge. We avoid any attempt by authors to identify the reviewers. SE also supports double-blind peer-review and open review in the future.
SE is committed to rapid manuscript processing and publication. An efficient editorial process is a valuable service both to our authors and to the scientific community. We therefore ask reviewers to submit their review report promptly within an agreed period. If reviewers need a longer delay than previously expected, we will keep the authors informed promptly or will find alternatives if necessary.
Peer-review is to provide the Editors with helpful information to make a decision and help the authors strengthen their manuscript by revision suggestions to be acceptable for publication or explain to the authors the major weaknesses of their manuscript resulting in rejection so that the authors may understand the rejection decision and can improve their manuscript accordingly and publish elsewhere.
We expect reviewers to assess a manuscript from the various aspects below:
1. Summarize the highlights of the manuscript;
2. State the flaws if any which are not acceptable for publication and provide detailed information;
Reviewers need to provide detailed point-to-point improvement advice if the above problems exist so that the authors can improve their manuscript accordingly. Reviewers can contact the Editor for guidance if having any questions.
Editors review each report of reviewers and ensure its validity before sending it to the authors. We seriously value reviewers' comments to Editor when making a decision on the paper. According to the policy, we normally transmit all comments of reviewers to the authors. However, we may edit a report to remove offensive language or comments that reveal confidential information on some occasions. We strongly expect reviewers to state their opinion on a paper without offensive statements and review their articles in the way you expect them to treat yours. Reviewers are required not to recommend authors to cite their publications when it is not clearly indicated that the citing can improve the article's quality, which may also reveal the reviewers' identities. Authors should take an objective view on criticisms to their manuscript.
SE Editors may ask for advice about submitted manuscripts not only from professional reviewers but also on any aspect of a paper that raises concerns, like ethical issues and threats to security. In such circumstances, advice will usually be sought simultaneously within the peer-review process. The final decision on whether to publish is made by the Editor-in-Chief of the journal involved.
More details of peer review are available at Peer Review Guidelines.
SE supports Gold Open Access and encourages fund support for authors. All articles published through Gold Open Access undergo rigorous peer review, with professional editing and production services provided. In addition, all contents on websites, including the full texts of articles, are accessible free of charge, with no registration required. To provide readers with free access to the full text and to bear the related charges arising from manuscript processing, peer review, manuscript editing, typesetting, language polishing, paper archiving, journal operation, platform maintenance, and system construction, etc., APC is charged for the articles accepted for publication. The specific charging standard is shown on SE's website.
SE strictly complies with the editorial guidelines by COPE on the statement of publication ethics and publication misconduct. According to the best practices of publication ethics by COPE, the responsibilities and rights of authors, reviewers, Editor-in-Chief, Associate Editors, Editorial Board members, and in-house Editors in the publishing process are clarified.
SE is a peer-reviewed journal, and authors are obliged to participate in our single-blind peer review process.
1. The authors should guarantee the originality, authenticity, accuracy, and repeatability of the data in the submissions. If necessary, the path of data sources should be provided to make it convenient for scholars to conduct repeated experiments or for further use.
2. The authors should guarantee that the submissions have not been submitted to other journals or officially published in other journals in the corresponding period. Serious problems with publication ethics, such as duplicate submission and duplicate publication, should be avoided.
3. If a manuscript involves human body, animal, or plant experiments, it is imperative to get timely permission from relevant institutions (e.g., Ethics Committee, Institutional Review Board, etc.); if it involves the personal information of subjects, the corresponding informed consent shall be obtained, respecting the subjects' privacy; if it involves clinical trials, it shall register with the Public Clinical Registration Center (refer to Research Ethics and Consent for details); and if it involves copyright issues, explicit permission shall be obtained from the corresponding publishing institutions or individuals (refer to Copyright and License to Publish for details). The relevant data shall be submitted to the Journal Office with the manuscript.
4. All submitted articles should comply with the Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSOT), Standards for Reporting of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies (STARD), and Strengthening the Reporting of Observational studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) guidelines; systematic review and meta-analysis should comply with Quality of reporting meta-analysis (QUOROM) and Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA), case study should comply with CAse REports (CARE) guidelines.
5. The authors should clarify the conflicts of interest (SE requires the authors to state clearly any possible economic or non-economic conflict of interest in the manuscript; refer to Conflicts of Interest Policy for details).
6. When serious data errors are found in published papers, the authors should inform the Journal Office in a timely manner. When necessary, they shall cooperate with the Journal Office to issue a statement of Correction or Retraction.
7. All authors of a manuscript have the right to track the real-time progress in manuscript processing. They can formally submit complaints to the corresponding Journal Office or Editor-in-Chief if they have any objection to the manuscript processing process.
8. It should be affirmed that all authors listed in the manuscript have made significant contributions to the research. Regarding the misconduct of false contribution or publication, plagiarism, etc., once it is found, the original authors have the right to safeguard their legitimate rights reasonably by informing the corresponding Journal Office and providing detailed data to make it convenient for the Journal Office to contact relevant departments or institutions for investigation. If the evidence is irrefutable through investigation, the Journal Office will directly reject or withdraw the manuscript and publicize the handling result. In terms of those who seriously violate publication ethics, the Journal Office will inform their affiliations and will never accept their submissions.
1. The reviewers should review and evaluate manuscripts in an objective, fair, and timely manner. They should not discriminate against the authors in terms of their nationality, race, etc., and the malice of slander should be avoided. They should respect the authors' contributions and help improve the quality of manuscripts.
2. Before a manuscript is officially published, the reviewers should not copy or keep the data in the manuscript for their own use or plagiarize the research methods and research ideas so as to protect the confidentiality of the manuscript.
3. The reviewers should pay careful attention to the potential conflicts of interest and remind the authors of them in a timely manner.
4. The reviewers should reasonably avoid their possible conflicts of interest with the authors and inform the Journal Office to avoid the possibility of an unfair evaluation.
5. In the case of finding any academic misconduct, the reviewers should timely inform the Journal Office or Editor-in-Chief, and they have the right to learn about the progress and results of the investigation.
The Editor-in-Chief is the key leader of SE is mainly responsible for its scientific quality. The Editor-in-Chief should guarantee the originality, and significance, take the academic value as the criteria for evaluating manuscripts and reasonably avoid improper publications for commercial purposes. The Editor-in-Chief's responsibilities include:
To reward the Editor-in-Chief for his contributions to the journal, OAE provides the Editor-in-Chief with a certain amount of funds each year to support the Editor-in-Chief's academic activities. The initial term for the Editor-in-Chief position is five years and it can be renewed.
The Associate Editors of SE are mainly responsible for inviting first-rate manuscripts to the journal and assisting the Editor-in-Chief initial review a submission in the case of a conflict of interest. The detailed responsibilities of the Associate Editors include:
The initial term for an Associate Editor is the same as that of the Editor-in-Chief, and it can be renewed. An Associate Editor can step down from the position at any time if he or she feels overloaded by the requests.
SE is supported by an international Editorial Board that consists of distinguished researchers from major research institutions around the world, and you can check the editorial board members at Editorial Board. The responsibilities of the Editorial Board Members include:
The initial term for Editorial Board membership is the same as that of the Editor-in-Chief, and it can be renewed. An Editorial Board member can step down from the position at any time if he or she feels overloaded by the requests.
SE support researchers to launch Special Issues on certain topics as Guest Editors. Special Issues can promote cooperation with scholars worldwide. The following are the guidelines for publishing a Special Issue.
Guest Editor is asked to prepare a proposal for the Special Issue which should contain the following information:
The editorial office will assess the proposal and officially release the Special Issue online if approved by the journal office and the Editor-in-Chief.
Guest Editors will be responsible for promoting their Special Issues and soliciting papers through distributing the Call-for-Papers via academic channels like conferences they attend.
The submission and peer review of Special Issue papers are managed in OAE's MESAs submission system.
The Guest Editor usually makes recommendations to the Editor-in-Chief on the manuscripts submitted to their Special Issue, and Guest Editors are required to have no conflicts of interest with authors whose work they are assessing.
The Editor-in-Chief is the final decision-maker on the acceptance of all manuscripts, including Special Issue papers submitted to the journal.
Special Issue papers are published online after acceptance in the journal immediately and collected together on the Special Issue webpage.
The article processing charge for Special Issue papers refers to the journal's APC policies.
Once all manuscripts are published, we ask the Guest Editor team to write an Editorial for the Special Issue.
After all papers belonging to the Special Issue have been published, we usually prepare a hard copy/softcopy/e-book after confirmation with the Guest Editor and deliver it to him/her to reward his/her contributions.
In-house Editors consist of the Managing Editor, the Assistant Editor, Language Editors, and Production Editors. Their responsibilities are described below:
The Assistant Editor is mainly responsible for assisting in completing the responsibilities of the Managing Editor mentioned above.
SE provides a free English editing service for all accepted manuscripts. Language Editors are responsible for polishing the language of submissions assigned to them. An additional fee will be charged to authors if very extensive English corrections must be made during the revision stage.
Production Editors are responsible for the work of pre-release online and production of accepted submissions. The production work includes copy editing, format conversion, proofreading, and online publication, etc.
All studies involving human subjects should be in accordance with the Helsinki Declaration and seek approval to conduct from an independent local, regional or national review body (e.g., ethics committee, institutional review board, etc.). Such approval, including the name of ethics committee, institutional review board, etc., should be listed in a declaration statement of Ethical Approval and Consent to Participate in the manuscript. If the study is judged exempt from ethics approval, related information (e.g., name of the ethics committee that granted the exemption, and the reason for the exemption) should also be listed. Further documentation on ethics should also be prepared, as Editors may request more detailed information. Manuscripts with suspected ethical problems would be investigated according to COPE Guidelines.
For all research involving human subjects, informed consent to participate in the study should be obtained from participants, or their parents or legal guardians for children under 16. Statements regarding consent to participate should be included in a declaration statement of Ethical Approval and Consent to Participate in the manuscript.
If any ethical violation is found at any stage of publication, the issue will be investigated seriously based on COPE Guidelines.
All articles published by SE are freely available on the internet. All manuscripts that include an individual participant's data in any form, like details, images, or videos, etc., should not be published without Consent for Publication obtained from that person, and for children, their parents or legal guardians. If the person has died, Consent for Publication must be obtained from the next of kin. Authors must add a declaration statement of Consent for Publication in the manuscript, specifying written informed consent for publication was obtained.
SE requires all authors to register all relevant clinical trials that are reported in manuscripts submitted. SE follows the World Health Organization (WHO)'s definition of clinical trials: "A clinical trial is any research study that prospectively assigns human participants or groups of humans to one or more health-related interventions to evaluate the effects on health outcomes. Interventions include but are not restricted to drugs, cells and other biological products, surgical procedures, radiologic procedures, devices, behavioural treatments, process-of-care changes, preventive care, etc."
In line with ICMJE recommendation, SE requires the registration of clinical trials in a public trials registry at or before the time of first patient enrollment. SE accepts publicly accessible registration in any registry that is a primary register of the WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) or in ClinicalTrials.gov. The trial registration number should be listed at the end of the Abstract.
Secondary data analyses of primary (parent) clinical trials should not be registered as a new clinical trial, but rather reference the trial registration number of the primary trial.
Editors should consider carefully whether studies failed to register or had an incomplete trial registration. Because of the importance of prospective trial registration, if there is an exception to this policy, trials must be registered and the authors should indicate in the publication when registration was completed and why it was delayed. Editors should publish a statement indicating why an exception was allowed. Please note such exceptions should be rare, and authors failing to prospectively register a trial risk its inadmissibility to SE.
Authors who are not sure whether they need trial registration may refer to ICMJE FAQs for further information.
SE adopts ICMJE requirements regarding data sharing statements. In particular, we adopt the view that data sharing statements must indicate the following:
|Example 1||Example 2||Example 3||Example 4|
|Will individual participant data be available (including data dictionaries)?||Yes||Yes||Yes||No|
|What data in particular will be shared?||All of the individual participant data collected during the trial, after deidentification||Individual participant data that underlie the results reported in this article, after deidentification (text, tables, figures, and appendices)||Individual participant data that underlie the results reported in this article, after deidentification (text, tables, figures, and appendices)||Not available|
|What other documents will be available?||Study protocol, statistical analysis plan, informed consent form, clinical study report, analytic code||Study protocol, statistical analysis plan, analytic code||Study protocol||Not available|
|When will data be available (start and end dates)?||Immediately after publication. No end date||Beginning 3 months and ending 5 years after article publication||Beginning 9 months and ending 36 months after article publication||Not applicable|
|With whom?||Anyone who wishes to access the data||Researchers who provide a methodologically sound proposal||Investigators whose proposed use of the data has been approved by an independent review committee ("learned intermediary") identified for this purpose||Not applicable|
|For what types of analyses?||Any purpose||To achieve aims in the approved proposal||For individual participant data meta-analysis||Not applicable|
|By what mechanism will data be made available?||Data are available indefinitely at (Link to be included).||Proposals should be directed to xxx@yyy. To gain access, data requesters will need to sign a data access agreement.
Data are available for 5 years at a third party website. (Link to be included)
|Proposals may be submitted up to 36 months following article publication. After 36 months the data will be available in our university's data warehouse but without investigator support other than deposited metadata. Information regarding submitting proposals and accessing data may be found at (Link to be provided).||Not applicable|
Experimental research on animals should be approved by appropriate ethics committees and must comply with institutional, national, or international guidelines. SE encourages authors to comply with the AALAS Guidelines, the ARRIVE Guidelines, and the ICLAS Guidelines and obtain prior approval from relevant ethics committee. Manuscripts must include a declaration statement of Ethical Approval and Consent to Participate indicating that the study has been approved by relevant ethical committee and the whole research process complies with ethical guidelines. If a study has been granted an exemption from requiring ethics approval, the name of the ethics committee that granted the exemption and the reasons for the exemption should be detailed. Editors will take account of animal welfare issues and reserve the right to reject a manuscript, especially if the research involves protocols that are inconsistent with commonly accepted norms of animal research.
Authors must describe what cell lines were used and their origin so that the research can be reproduced. For established cell lines, the provenance should be stated and references must also be given to either a published paper or to a commercial source. For de novo cell lines derived from human tissue, an appropriate approval from an institutional review board or equivalent ethical committee and consent from the donor or next of kin should be obtained, and such statements should be listed on the declaration section of Ethical Approval and Consent to Participate in the manuscript.
Further information is available from the International Cell Line Authentication Committee (ICLAC). SE recommends that authors check the NCBI database for misidentification and contamination of human cell lines.
Experimental research on plants (either cultivated or wild), including a collection of plant material, must comply with institutional, national, or international guidelines. Field studies should be conducted in accordance with local legislation, and the manuscript should include a statement specifying the appropriate permissions and/or licenses. SE recommends that authors comply with the IUCN Policy Statement on Research Involving Species at Risk of Extinction and the Convention on the Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.
For each submitted manuscript, supporting genetic information and origin must be provided. For research manuscripts involving rare and non-model plants (other than, e.g., Arabidopsis thaliana, Nicotiana benthamiana, Oriza sativa, or many other typical model plants), voucher specimens must be deposited in a public herbarium or other public collection providing access to deposited materials.
Misconduct includes but is not limited to data fabrication, plagiarism, authorship impropriety, breach of ethical and legal regulations, misappropriation of others' ideas, etc. WAME has summarized some most common forms of misconduct in order to help authors avoid those inappropriate behaviors.
1. SE is a member of Crossref. It can conduct duplicate checking on each manuscript through iThenticate to avoid the misconducts of suspected plagiarism, duplicate publication, etc.
2. SE provides MESAs, an independent manuscript processing system. It can support authors to conduct self-inspection according to the checklist. In the case of any misconduct of suspected plagiarism, duplicate publication, etc., the system will automatically inform the Editorial Board of the journal.
3. SE uses Motuin, a kind of software for image similarity analysis, to identify suspected image plagiarism or manipulation.
4. SE encourages anyone, including readers, authors, reviewers, Editorial Board members, etc., to inform against suspected misconduct according to the relevant regulations by WAME, COPE, and ICMJE and timely inform the journal's Editor or the publisher.
5. It is the informant's responsibility to provide sufficient evidence and information to make it convenient for Editors or publishers to contact relevant departments for further investigation.
1. SE provides information, enhance awareness, and list the contributions of authors.
2. SE ensures the disclosure of conflicts of interest and provide guidance on authorship and signature.
3. SE sets the function of commenting on articles to encourage readers to discuss the articles published online.
4. The expectation of confidentiality is explained to reviewers.
5. The Quality Control Committee and the Ethics Committee are established for SE.
SE takes all allegations of potential misconduct seriously and deals with them case-by-case on the basis of the WAME Guidelines and COPE Guidelines. If there is misconduct suspicion, it may be necessary for the Editors to contact and share the content of the manuscript with third parties, such as authors' institutions and ethics committees. Any questions, you may email SE: email@example.com
1. For the suspected misconduct identified by the plagiarism detecting system, the Managing Editor will send the detecting results to the parties concerned and seek a formal response from them. After the investigation of relevant institutions or departments, the Managing Editor will take the following appropriate measures to handle irrefutable academic misconduct.
Handling results for reference (with the punishment degree from mild to severe, one or more handling methods can be adopted in accordance with specific conditions):
A. Inform and educate the parties concerned.
B. Give warnings to the parties concerned.
C. Publicize the academic misconduct.
D. Inform the affiliations of the parties concerned or the persons in charge.
E. Reject or withdraw the manuscript and inform the relevant database administrator to withdraw the publication records. For specific statements, please refer to the policies in Corrections and Retractions.
F. Within a certain period of time, the parties concerned are forbidden to submit manuscripts, publish articles, or participate in other relevant academic activities in the journal and other journals subordinate to the same publishing house.
G. If the circumstance is severe, the Managing Editor will inform the relevant departments or institutions, which will permanently record their misconduct on publication ethics.
2. When the Managing Editor, the Assistant Editor, the Editor-in-Chief, or an Associate Editor receives a written report against academic misconduct, one or more of the following are performed:
A. Contact the informant to provide sufficient evidence and information.
B. Seek a direct response from the parties accused.
C. Contact relevant organizations or regulatory agencies to assist in the investigation in the case of receiving an insufficient response.
D. If necessary, on the premise of avoiding conflicts of interest with the parties concerned, an investigation team composed of the Editor-in-Chief or Associate Editor of the journal and at least one Editorial Board member in cooperation should be established to carry out an investigation.
E. The investigation team will inform the parties accused to start the investigation officially.
F. Adopt different handling methods according to different situations:
a. formally informing both parties if it is not identified as misconduct;
b. proposing relevant suggestions to the Editors according to the severity of circumstances if it is identified as misconduct, and formally informing both parties of the handling results.
SE handles misconduct according to the flowcharts by COPE. If there is any objection to the handling methods, a further appeal can be submitted to the publisher at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Authorship credit of SE should be solely based on substantial contributions to a published study, as specified in the following four criteria:
1. Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work, or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work;
2. Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content;
3. Final approval of the version to be published;
4. Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.
All those who meet these criteria should be identified as authors. Authors must specify their contributions in the section Authors' Contributions of their manuscripts. Contributors who do not meet all the four criteria (like only involved in the acquisition of funding, general supervision of a research group, general administrative support, writing assistance, technical editing, language editing, proofreading, etc.) should be acknowledged in the section Acknowledgement in the manuscript rather than being listed as authors.
If a large multiple-author group has conducted the work, the group ideally should decide who will be the authors before the work starts and confirm authors before submission. All authors of the group named as authors must meet all the four criteria for authorship.
SE does not require all authors to sign the letter of their submission, nor do they impose an order on the list of authors. Submissions taken by SE mean that all the listed authors have agreed on all of the contents, including the author list and the statement of authors' contributions.
Corresponding author(s) is who takes primary responsibility of communicating with journal Editors during manuscript processing, before and after publication, and typically ensures that all the journal's requirements are properly completed, such as ensuring all authors have agreed to be so listed and have approved the manuscript submitted to the journal, providing details of authorship, ethical committee approval and clinical trial registration documents, and gathering conflicts of interest forms, etc.
Any changes to the author list after submission, such as a change in the order of the authors or the deletion or addition of authors, must be approved by every author. SE Editors are not in a position to investigate or adjudicate authorship disputes before or after publication. Such disagreements, if they cannot be resolved amongst authors, should be directed to the relevant institutional authority. No change is allowed on authorship after official acceptance of manuscripts.
The primary affiliation for each author should be the institution where the majority of their work is done. If an author has subsequently moved, the current address may also be stated. SE remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.
The corresponding author is also expected to be responsible for the following with respect to data, code, and materials:
At submission, the corresponding author must clearly identify any material in the manuscript (such as figures or tables) that has been published previously elsewhere and confirm that written permission from authors of the prior work and/or publishers has been well obtained for the re-use of such material. After acceptance, the corresponding author is responsible for the accuracy of all content in the proof, including the names of coauthors, addresses and affiliations. After publication, corresponding author is the point of contact for queries about the published paper. It is their responsibility to inform all co-authors of any matters arising in relation to the published paper and to ensure such matters are dealt with promptly. Authors of published manuscripts have a responsibility to inform the journal immediately if they become aware of any aspect that requires correction.
Corresponding authors are advised to provide their ORCID (Open Researcher and Contributor ID) when submitting a manuscript. This information is also visible once the manuscript is published online.
When two authors contribute equally to a work, authors can indicate dual first authorship with an asterisk on the manuscript title page and a short note "Drs. XXX and XXX contributed equally to this article.".
SE permits the use of group names in the case where some large groups designate authorship by a group name, with or without names of individual authors. When submitting a manuscript authored by a group, the corresponding authors should specify the group name if one exists and clearly identify the group members who can take credit and responsibility for the work as authors.
SE requires authors to make a statement of authors' contributions to specify the contribution of each author at the end of their manuscript. The details vary: some disciplines produce manuscripts that comprise discrete efforts in detail, whereas some operate as a group at all stages. We also encourage authors to list anyone who does not meet the criteria for authorship in an Acknowledgments section in their publication, for example, to recognize the contributions of anyone who provided research or writing assistance. COPE also provides extensive resources on authorship and authorship disputes, and we encourage anyone involved in editorial decisions to familiarize themselves with these resources. We support our Editors in dealing with any authorship disputes, including escalating or seeking advice on cases with COPE. We integrate with established and emerging industry standards to increase transparency in authorship (for example, ORCID). We support initiatives that enable transparency in authorship and contributorship, such as CrediT(Contributor Roles Taxonomy).
It is the responsibility of every academic to maintain the transparency and credibility of the research publication. Improving the transparency and legitimacy of the publishing system allows us to effectively share important information, thereby improving our understanding of academic knowledge. SE requires authors to declare any competing financial and/or non-financial interests in their submitted manuscripts.
Conflicts of interest refer to a situation where an author cannot handle things from an objective stand because of various relationships. SE's conflicts of interest include financial and non-financial interests which could undermine the objectivity, integrity, and value of a publication.
Funding Support: Authors need to disclose funding support that may gain or lose through this publication, as well as the funder’s role in the conception, design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, and preparation of the manuscript.
Employment: Recent (while engaged in current research project), present or anticipated employment by any organization that may gain or lose financially through this publication.
Personal financial interests: Stocks, shares, consultation fees and other forms of remuneration that may gain or lose financially through the publication; Patents or patent applications whose value may be affected by the publication.
It is difficult to define a detailed threshold that will refer to financial interest, so we suggest authors declaring all possible conflicts of interest of their research manuscripts, avoiding embarrassing the authors once the article is published online without declaration.
No-financial conflicts of interest usually refer to personal or professional relations with organizations and individuals. It mainly includes but is not limited to the following situations: unpaid membership in a government or non-governmental organization, unpaid advisory position in a commercial organization, acting as an expert witness. We suggest authors declaring any unpaid roles or relationships that may affect the publication process.
SE requires authors to declare any possible financial and/or non-financial conflicts of interest at the end of their manuscript and in the cover letter and confirm this point when submitting their manuscript in the submission system. If no conflicts of interest exist, authors need to state "The authors declare no conflicts of interest". We also recognize that some authors may be bound by confidentiality agreements, in which cases authors need to sate "The authors declare that they are bound by confidentiality agreements that prevent them from disclosing their competing interests in this work."
Declaration of each manuscript in peer review is fully open to reviewers and subsequently fully open to readers when the manuscript is online published after acceptance.
SE suggests reviewers avoid reviewing manuscripts in which significant conflicts of interest exist. However, under the situation that Editors are well informed of any related interests, and the existing interests do not affect the conclusion of the manuscript, reviewers may still evaluate it and give their comments. Editors will consider the interests when weighing their recommendations.
Editors of SE are required to declare any interests that may impact their editorial practices and to exclude themselves if the conflicts of interest would have a significant effect on the editorial processing.
Manuscripts submitted to SE must be original and should not be published or under consideration for any other journals. Authors are required to declare it clearly in the cover letter in any case where there is the potential for overlap or duplication. Any overlapping publications should be cited. SE is a member of Crossref and uses iThenticate to detect possible plagiarism. Any suspected cases of covert duplicate manuscript submission will be handled as outlined in the COPE Guidelines, and the Editor may contact the authors' institution if any misconduct exists.
However, a complete report following publication of a preliminary report, such as a letter to the Editor, a preprint or an abstract or a poster displayed at an academic conference, and a paper presented at an academic conference but unpublished in full, or being considered for publication in proceedings or similar format, are usually considered as exceptions to this rule. Press reports of scheduled meetings are not usually regarded as breaches of this rule, but they may be if additional data tables or figures enrich such reports.
In addition, there are certain cases where secondary publication is justifiable and acceptable. Please refer to the ICMJE's Overlapping Publications Policy, which we endorse, for more information.
Authors are required to cite relevant literature appropriately in support of the claims made in the manuscript. They must not cite sources that have not been read and should ensure that all the citations are correct. Original work rather than its derivations should be cited. Excessive and inappropriate self-citations or coordinated efforts among several authors to collectively self-cite are strongly discouraged.
Submitted and accepted articles must remain privileged documents and must not be released to the press or the public, in any format, including print, television, internet, etc., until the manuscript appears online either as ahead of print or as a final publication. SE allows authors to post their manuscripts on not-for-profit preprint servers, or to discuss it at scientific conferences, but these should not be discussed with the media.
A preprint is defined as an author's version of a research manuscript prior to formal peer review at a journal, which is deposited on a public server. For SE, prior to acceptance for publication, authors retain the right to make a preprint version of an article available on preprint servers, authors' or institutional websites, and open communications among researchers either on community preprint servers or preprint commenting platforms.
When authors submit their preprints to SE, they should disclose the information such as detailed DOI and licensing terms on preprint platforms in the cover letter.
Once the preprint is published, it's the author's responsibility to update the final version of their manuscript on preprint platforms and declare that the article has been accepted for publication in the form as follows: "This article has been accepted for publication in SE published by OAE Publishing Inc. (DOI: xxxxx; URL link: xxxxx).".
Authors may cite preprints in the references of their manuscript submitted to SE with the format arranged as below:
Adams DM, Reay WR, Geaghan MP, Cairns MJ. Investigating the effect of glycaemic traits on the risk of psychiatric illness using Mendelian randomization. Preprint at https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.03.09.984690v1 (2020).
SE welcomes submissions containing materials that have been published in a conference proceeding paper. However, the submission should provide substantial extension of methodology, results, analysis and conclusion, and the authors need to disclose such information in the cover letter to inform editors. Meanwhile, the authors must obtain copyright permissions if re-used previously published materials.
SE adheres to COPE Guidelines and treats manuscripts confidentially during the editorial processing. The Editors will not share manuscripts with third parties except in cases of suspected misconduct. Please refer to Misconduct Policy for more details. Once a manuscript is rejected for publication, all the copies of the manuscript will be deleted from the editorial system. In case the Editor needs to retain certain manuscripts rejected, they should get permission from the authors in advance.
SE adopts a single-blind peer-review process for SE, which means the identities of reviewers are not revealed to authors or anyone else unless reviewers permit. Reviewers are also required to respect the confidentiality rules and not distribute or misappropriate any information of the manuscript during or after the peer-review process. If reviewers want to involve another person in the review process, they should contact the Editors first for permission, provide the name of the person who would assist the review process, and ensure confidentiality is maintained.
SE adopts the Attribution 4.0 International License or Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported for publication. Copyright is retained by authors. Authors are required to sign a License to Publish (which can be downloaded from the section Author Instructions), granting SE, which identifies itself as the original publisher, exclusive rights to publish their articles, and granting any third party the right to use the articles freely as long as the integrity is maintained and the original authors, citation details and publisher are identified.
To maintain the integrity, transparency and reproducibility of research records, authors are encouraged to make their experimental materials and research data freely available to readers, either by publishing the supportive information as supplementary information in the journal or by depositing datasets into publicly available data repositories. The information indicating where the data and materials of their works can be found must be included in the manuscript as a declaration of Availability of Data and Materials. Authors who are unable to share their data must state that data will not be shared and specify the reason accordingly.
To ensure permanent access to publications, articles published in SE are archived in Portico, which is one of the leading digital preservation service providers in the world.
Manuscripts containing new taxon names or other nomenclatural acts must follow the guidelines set by the International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants.
Authors describing new fungal taxa should register the names with a recognized repository, such as Mycobank, and request a unique digital identifier that should be included in the published articles.
Since January 2012, electronic publication of zoological names has been a valid form of publication if certain conditions are met. Manuscripts containing new taxon names or other nomenclatural acts must follow the guidelines set by the International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature. SE requires the new taxon name and the article it is published in to be registered with ZooBank. The unique identifier provided by ZooBank should be included in the published articles. Authors will be able to update ZooBank with the final citation following publication.
Based on the International Code of Nomenclature of Prokaryotes (ICNP), effective publication of new prokaryotic names can be made possible in electronic journals.
As prescribed by the rules of the International Committee on Systematics of Prokaryotes (ICSP), for valid publication of new names, authors must submit a final version of the published article, together with certificates of deposition of the type strain (for unrestricted distribution) in at least two internationally recognized and publicly accessible culture collections in different countries, to the International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology (IJSEM) editorial office.
Followed by review of the List Editor, effectively published names that conform to all rules of the ICNP will appear on a subsequent Validation List, in the order in which they were received, thereby becoming validly published.
The proposal of new virus names must follow the guidelines of the International Code of Virus Classification and Nomenclature. Proposals for new virus taxa should be forwarded to the relevant Study Group of the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV) for consideration.
To maintain the integrity of the academic record, SE has responsibilities, if necessary, to publish corrections to, or retractions of, articles published in the journal.
It is necessary to publish a Correction when errors, which affect the interpretation and conclusion of the article but not fully invalidate the article, are detected. A Correction should be published as soon as possible, detailing changes and citing the original publication. Corrections are published without changing the original article and bi-directionally linked to the original article. The original article remains in the public domain, and the subsequent correction will be widely indexed as well.
A Retraction should be published if the errors are serious enough to invalidate a paper's results and conclusions. Proven misconduct, including data fabrication, plagiarism, unethical research, etc., may also lead to Retraction. A Retraction should be published promptly to minimize harmful effects caused by misleading publications. It should clearly identify the retracted article and be bidirectionally linked to the retracted article wherever possible. Who has retracted the article and the detailed reasons for retraction should also be provided. Retraction should be freely available to all readers.
SE adheres to COPE Guidelines and ICMJE Guidelines to handle Corrections and Retractions.
Crossmark is a multi-publisher initiative from Crossref to provide a standard way for readers to locate the authoritative version of a piece of content. By applying the Crossmark logo, SE is committed to maintaining the content it has published and to reminding readers of any change if and when they occur.
The Crossmark icon informs readers of the current status of a document and provides its additional publication record as well.
If authors do not agree with any decision made in editorial handling, they can submit a formal appeal to the editorial office, explaining their reasons. The issue will be soon dealt with according to the COPE Guidelines.
Anyone who believes that research published by SE has not been carried out in line with these principles should raise their concerns with the relevant Editor or email email@example.com.