Ethics of scientific publications

The editorial board of academic journal Natural Sciences” adheres to the principles of publication ethics adopted by the international community, in particular reflected in the recommendations of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE), http://publicationethics.org, Ethical Guidelines for Journal Publication, http://web.ccsenet.org/ethical-guidelines.html, and also takes into account the valuable experience of reputable international journals and publishers.

To avoid unfair practices in publishing activities (plagiarism, presentation of false information, etc.), in order to ensure the high quality of scientific publications and public recognition of the scientific results obtained by the author, each member of the editorial board, author, reviewer, publisher, as well as institutions involved in the publishing process, are to comply with ethical standards, norms and rules and take all reasonable measures to prevent their violation. Compliance with the scientific publication ethical rules by all participants of this process contributes to ensuring the rights of authors to intellectual property, improving the quality of publications and eliminating the possibility of illegal use of copyrighted materials in the interests of certain individuals.

The basic terms used in this regulation are:

Ethics of scientific publications is a system of norms of professional behavior in the relations between authors, reviewers, editors, publishers and readers in the process of creating, distributing and using scientific publications.

An Author is a person or group of persons (a team of authors) involved in the creation of a publication on research results.

An Editor-in-Chief is a person who heads the editorial board and makes final decisions regarding the production and publication of the journal.

A Publisher is a legal person or natural person who publishes a scientific publication.

A Scientific Article is a completed and published author’s work.

Plagiarism is the deliberate appropriation of the authorship of someone else’s work of science or art, someone else’s ideas or inventions. Plagiarism may be a violation of copyright and patent laws and as such may entail legal liability. 

An Editor is a representative of a scientific journal or publishing house who prepares materials for publication, as well as maintains communication with the authors and readers of scientific publications.

An Editorial Board is a deliberative body consisting of a group of authoritative persons; it assists the editor-in-chief in selecting, preparing and evaluating works for publication.

A Reviewer is an expert acting on behalf of a scientific journal or publishing house and conducting a scientific examination of the author’s materials in order to determine the possibility of their publication.

A Manuscript is an author’s work submitted for publication to the editorial board, but not published. 

A Reader is a person who has read the published materials.

1. Principles of professional ethics in publisher’s activities

The publisher is responsible for publication of authors’ original works, which entails the need to follow the further fundamental principles and procedures:

1.1. Promote the performance of ethical duties by the editorial office, the editorial-review group, the editorial board, reviewers and authors in accordance with these requirements.

1.2. Provide support to the editorial office of the journal in reviewing claims about the ethical aspects of the published materials and help interact with other journals and / or publishers if this contributes to the performance of the duties of the editors.

1.3. Ensure the confidentiality of the information received from the authors of the publication and any information until the moment of its publication.

1.4. Be aware of the fact that the activities of the journal are not a commercial project and have non-profit aims.

1.5. Always be ready to publish revisions, clarifications, rebuttals, and apologies when necessary.

1.6. Provide the editorial office with the opportunity to exclude publications containing plagiarism and false data.

1.7. The publisher (editor) has the right to reject a manuscript or to require the author to modify it if it is drawn up in violation of the Rules adopted in this journal and agreed with the Publisher.

1.8. The article accepted for publication is made publicly available; copyright is reserved for the authors.

1.9. Publish information about financial support for the research if the author provides such information for the article.

1.10. The editorial office undertakes to take all measures to eliminate grammatical, stylistic and other errors in the content in case they are found.

1.11. Agree with the author upon the editorial proofreading of the article.

1.12. Do not delay the release of the journal.

2. Ethical principles that shall guide the author of a scientific publication

When submitting materials to scientific journal “Natural Sciences”, the author (or the team of authors), is aware of initial responsibility for the novelty and reliability of the research results, which implies compliance with the following principles:

2.1. The authors of the article shall present reliable results of the conducted research. Obviously erroneous or falsified statements are unacceptable.

2.2. The authors must ensure that the research results presented in the submitted manuscript are completely original. Borrowed fragments or statements are to be made with the obligatory mention of the author and the original source. Excessive borrowing, as well as plagiarism in any form, including unformulated quotations, paraphrasing or attribution of rights to the results of other people’s research, is unethical and unacceptable. The presence of borrowing without reference will be considered by the editorial board as plagiarism.

2.3. The authors shall provide only true facts and information in the manuscript; provide sufficient information for verification and repetition of experiments by other researchers; they shall not use information obtained privately, without open written permission; they shall not allow fabrication and falsification of data.

2.4. Avoid duplication of publications (in the cover letter, the author shall indicate that the work is published for the first time). If certain elements of the manuscript were previously published, the author shall refer to an earlier work and indicate the differences between the new work and the previous one.

2.5. The authors shall not submit to the journal a manuscript that has been sent to another journal and is under review, as well as an article that has already been published in another journal.

2.6. It is necessary to recognize the contribution of all persons who in one way or another influenced the course of the study; in particular, the article shall contain references to works that were important during the research.

2.7. The authors shall comply with ethical standards when criticizing or commenting on third-party research.

2.8. The authors shall adhere to the principles of bioethics in animal studies.

2.9. All persons who have made a significant contribution to the research shall be listed as co-authors of the article. Among the co-authors, it is unacceptable to indicate persons who did not participate in the study.

2.10. The authors shall respect the work of the editorial board and reviewers and eliminate the pointed shortcomings or explain them in a reasoned manner.

2.11. The authors shall submit and draw up the manuscript in accordance with the rules adopted in the journal.

2.12. If the author finds significant errors or inaccuracies in the article at the stage of its review or after its publication, they shall notify the editorial office of the journal without delay;

2.13. The authors shall provide the editorial board or the publisher with a proof of the correctness of the original article or correct significant errors if the editorial board or the publisher became aware of them from third parties.

3. Ethical principles of the work of the reviewer

The reviewer carries out a scientific examination of the author’s materials, so their actions shall be unbiased, consisting in the implementation of the following principles:

3.1 The assigned manuscript shall be considered as a confidential document which cannot be transferred for review or discussion to third parties who do not have the authority from the editorial office.

3.2 Reviewers are to know that the manuscripts sent to them are the intellectual property of the authors and relate to information that is not subject to disclosure.

Violation of confidentiality is possible only if the reviewer claims that the paper contains unreliable material or falsified data;

3.3 The reviewer shall immediately call to the editor’s attention a manuscript containing any similarities between the manuscript under review and another paper as well as the fact that there are no references to the provisions, conclusions or arguments previously published in other works of this or other authors.

3.4 The reviewer shall note the relevant published works that are not cited (in the article).

3.5 The reviewer shall give an unbiased and reasoned assessment of the presented research results and clearly justified recommendations. Personal criticism of the author is unacceptable.

3.6 The reviewer’s comments and suggestions shall be unbiased and well-reasoned, aimed at improving the scientific level of the manuscript.

3.7 The reviewer shall make decisions based on specific facts and provide evidence of his/her decision.

3.8 Reviewers are not allowed to make copies of the manuscripts for their own needs.

3.9 The reviewer should not use for his/her own advantage any part of any data or work reported in submitted and as yet unpublished articles.

3.10 The reviewer who feels unqualified to review the assigned manuscript or affirms that he/she cannot be unbiased, for example, if there is a conflict of interest with the author or organization, should immediately notify the editor requesting to remove him/her from the process of reviewing this manuscript;

3.11 The reviewer shall treat the manuscript in a confidential manner. The full name of the reviewer is known by the executive secretary and the editor-in-chief of the journal. This information is not disclosed.

4. Principles of professional ethics in the work of the editor-in-chief

The editor-in-chief is responsible for the publication of copyrighted works, which imposes the need to follow the fundamental principles:

4.1 Editor-in-chief’s decisions to accept or reject the paper for publication shall be based on reliability of the data presented and validity of the study.

4.2 The editor-in-chief should accept the intellectual content of the manuscripts regardless of the race, gender, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, origin, citizenship, social status or political preferences of the authors.

4.3 No content of the unpublished data obtained from the submitted manuscripts shall be used for personal purposes and disclosed to  third parties without the written consent of the author.

The editor-in-chief shall ensure that information or ideas obtained during editing and related to possible benefits are processed in a confidential manner and are not used for his/her own advantage.  

The editor-in-chief shall not authorize publication of the information if there are sufficient grounds to believe that information contains plagiarized material.

4.5 The editor-in-chief undertakes to:

- strive to constantly improve their journal;

- follow the principle of freedom of expression;

- strive to meet the needs of readers and authors;

- preclude business or political needs from decisions about the publication of materials;

-  make a decision on the publication of materials, guided by the following main criteria: compliance of the manuscript with the subject of the journal; relevance, novelty and scientific significance of the submitted article; clarity of presentation; reliability of results and completeness of conclusions. The quality of the study and its relevance are the basis for the decision on publication;

- take reasonable measures to ensure quality of the material published and protect the confidentiality of personal data;

- take into account the recommendations of reviewers when making a final decision on the publication of the article. The responsibility for the decision to publish lies entirely with the editorial board of the journal;

- justify the decision in case of acceptance or rejection of the article;

- provide the author of the reviewed material with an opportunity to justify their research position;

-  not overturn the  previously made decisions in case of changes in the editorial board members. 

4.6 The editor-in-chief, together with the publisher, shall not leave unanswered claims concerning the reviewed manuscripts or published materials, and take all necessary measures to restore the violated rights if a conflict situation is identified.

5. Guidelines for the publication of articles

5.1 Compliance with publishing ethics by the editorial board.

5.2 Compliance with the guidelines when rejecting articles.

5.3 Maintaining the integrity of the academic record.

5.4 Prevention of damage to intellectual and ethical standards in the presence of commercial interests.

5.5 Readiness to publish revisions, clarifications, retractions and apologies when needed.

5.6 Preventing the publication of plagiarism and fraudulent data.

6. Conflict of interest

In order to avoid violation of publication ethics, a conflict of interests of all parties involved in the publishing process shall be excluded. A conflict of interest arises if the author, reviewer, or an editorial board member has a financial, scientific, or personal relationship that may affect their actions. Such relationship is called dual obligations, competing interests, or competing loyalties.

In order to prevent conflicts of interest and in accordance with the accepted ethical standards of the journal, each of the parties has the following responsibilities.

The editor shall:

-  transfer the manuscript for consideration to another member of the editorial board if the originally appointed reviewer has a conflict of interest with the author of the submitted manuscript;

- require from all participants of the publishing process to disclose any potential competing interests.

- make a decision on the publication of information specified in the author’s letter concerning a conflict of scientific and / or financial interests, if it is not confidential and may affect the evaluation of the published work by the reader or the scientific community;

- ensure the publication of amendments if information about the conflict of interests was received after the publication of the article.

The author shall:

- declare in the cover letter all the known and potential sources of interests;

- indicate explicitly his/her place of work and all sources that have supported the study;

-  if there is no conflict of interest, clearly state it in the cover letter.

The reviewer shall:

- inform the editor about the existence of a conflict of interest (dual obligations, competing interests) and refuse to examine the manuscript.

Violations

If there is a possible misconduct involving a violation of publication ethics on the part of the editor, author or reviewer, a proper investigation into alleged misconduct is conducted. This extends to both published and unpublished papers from the date of publication of the document. The Editorial Board is obliged to require clarification, without involving persons who may have a conflict of interest with one of the parties.

If material containing significant inaccuracies has been published, it should be corrected immediately in a form accessible to readers and index systems.

 

The Ethics of Scientific Publications Regulation approved by the Editor-in-Chief of scientific journal “Natural Sciences”, Doctor of Biological Sciences, Associate Professor L.V. Yakovleva on 15.10.2020