A fundamental  element in the progression of a well-organized and respected network of knowledge is the final publication of the work in a peer-reviewed journal which  supports and embodies the scientific method. The publication underlines the quality of both the authors and the institutions beyond them. That’s why all the parties involved in the act of publishing, including the journal editor, the peer-reviewer, the publisher and the society of society-owned or sponsored journals, honor what the ethical behaviour requires from them.

The journal adhere and follow the WORLD MEDICAL ASSOCIATION (WMA) DECLARATION OF HELSINKI (2013) – ETHICAL PRINCIPLES FOR MEDICAL RESEARCH INVOLVING HUMAN SUBJECTS https://www.wma.net/policies-post/wma-declaration-of-helsinki-ethical-principles-for-medical-research-involving-human-subjects.

With special concern to the following paragraph "Authors, editors and publishers all have ethical obligations with regard to the publication of the results of research. Authors have a duty to make publicly available the results of their research on human subjects and are accountable for the completeness and accuracy of their reports. They should adhere to accepted guidelines for ethical reporting. Negative and inconclusive as well as positive results should be published or otherwise made publicly available. Sources of funding, institutional affiliations and conflicts of interest should be declared in the publication. Reports of research not in accordance with the principles of this Declaration should not be accepted for publication.Every clinical trial must be registered in a publicly accessible database before recruitment of the first subject.For medical research using identifiable human material or data, physicians must normally seek consent for the collection, analysis, storage and/or reuse.”


Mission of the Publisher

The above requirements are at the basis of these guidelines that acknowledge the role of the publisher in supporting the great energies employed by journal editors  and the unrecognized work of peer reviewers so as to preserve the integrity of the scholarly record.

The publisher has not only the role to care for the scholarly communication but he/she has also the responsibility to guarantee its best publishing practice.

Just adopting the policies and procedures and giving editors, authors, reviewers  these guidelines, we can support them in performing their ethical duties.

We strive for the independence of any editorial decision free from the potential of advertising, reprint or other commercial revenue.

We give all our support in supplying extensive education and advice on publishing ethics standards to researchers, especially early career ones.

 

Duties of editors

The validation of a work and consequently its importance to researchers and readers must respect the decisions taken by the editor who is responsible for deciding even when he/she works with other partners.

In order to guarantee a fair, unbiased and timely peer review , the editor should have his/her journal’s articles reviewed by at least two external reviewers. A suitable expertise is required in the selection of reviewers and the risk of fraudolent peer reviewers  must be carefully avoided. All potential conflicts of interest and suggestions for self-citation are to be reviewed so as to cut out any latent bias.

No regard to race, gender, sexual orientation, religious belief, ethnic origin, citizenship, political philosophy of the authors should influence the  evaluation of manuscripts. Transparency and honest reporting must be encouraged and expectations must be clearly  caught by peer reviewers and authors. Moreover the editor is expected to use the journal’s electronic submission system for all communications. The editor and the publisher will cooperate  to get a transparent mechanism for appeal against editorial decisions.

No references to any journal’s articles can be included but for scholarly reasons , in particular, no references to the editor’s own articles or products or services where it is possible to find out the editor’s interest.

All material submitted to the journal and all communications with reviewers must be preserved except for what is agreed with the relevant authors and the reviewers themselves.

If the editor thinks it necessary to investigate suspected research misconduct, he/she can share information with other editors. Reviewers’ identities must be protected unless an open peer-review system or an agreement to disclose names is operating. An editor cannot use unpublished materials disclosed in a submitted manuscript unless he/she gets a written consent of the author.

If the editor has received privileged information or ideas through peer review, he/she must neither reveal them nor use (them) for personal advantage.

The publisher should be informed about any potential conflicts of interest and updated when new conflicts arise. All decisions on the editor’s writings or on his family members’ or colleagues’ ones must not involve the editor himself. Any such submission is subject to the journal’s usual procedures  with a clear statement on any paper published.

The editor must work in accordance with the publisher to guarantee the integrity of the published record.

Any suspected misconduct such as plagiarism will be processed by contacting the author of the manuscript or paper, by further communications to institutions and research bodies, by making use of the publisher’s measures. A manifest evidence of misconduct will make the editor coordinate with the publisher in order to arrange the prompt publication of a correction, retraction, expression of concern.

 

Duties of Reviewers

Peer review,  as an essential component of formal scholarly communication closely bound to the scientific method, gives a great contribution to make editorial decisions  and to the author in improving the papers.  If a selected reviewer feels unqualified or unable to give a prompt review, he/she should notify the editor and decline his/her contribution.

 

All manuscripts are confidential documents and, consequently, no information about the paper is allowed and no contact with the authors is permitted unless agreed with the editor. A reviewer can’t use unpublished materials in a submitted manuscript in his own research. Reviewers must preserve information or ideas received through peer review as confidential and must not use them for personal advantage.

Any similarities or overlaps between the manuscript and other published papers should be brought by the reviewer to the attention of the editor and  any observation, derivation or argument previously reported should be accompanied by the relevant citation.

A review should be objective and so any personal criticism of the author must be avoided. The view of referees should be clearly supported and the editor should be consulted before reviewing a paper if there are any potential conflicts of interest resulting from competitive or collaborative connections with any of the authors, companies or institutions connected to the papers. If an author refers to the reviewer’s work by citations, it  must be for scientific reasons and not to enhance the visibility of the work.

 

Duties of Authors

The work of reports of original research  requires an accurate account from the authors as well as accurate underlying data, sufficient detail and references otherwise it might  be charged with unethical behavior . The same accuracy is required for review, professional publication articles and editorial “opinion”.

Authors’ research data should be provided with public access and be retained for a reasonable number of years.

The authors’ works must be entirely original and the words of others must be cited or quoted  and authorized. Authors are expected to acknowledge the work of others through citations. No information obtained privately can be used unless authorized by the source. Any forms of plagiarism is unacceptable and constitutes unethical behavior.

An author cannot publish a work on the same research in more than one journal and if he/she does so, his/her behavior is considered unethical and unacceptable. He/she cannot publish in another journal his/her paper previously published unless in the form of an abstract or a part of a lecture or academic thesis or as an electronic preprint. Some kinds of articles such as clinical guides or translations can be published  in more than one journal provided  authors and editors find an agreement for a secondary publication with the same data and interpretation of the primary document which must be cited in the secondary one.

Authors cannot use information from confidential services except for a written permission.

All those who have substantially contributed to the reported study  should be listed as co-authors. Others who have taken part in some aspects of the paper such as language editing or medical writing should be mentioned in acknowledgements section. The corresponding author should be sure of the inclusion of co-authors on the paper  and make sure that they have seen and approved the final version. Before submitting a manuscript, authors should check the list and order of authors. Any addition, deletion or rearrangement will be considered by the editor very rarely. Authors are collectively responsible for the work and all questions related to the accuracy and integrity  of the work must be investigated and resolved appropriately.

Authors are obliged to identify any  hazardous use in the involvement of chemicals, procedures or equipment as well as in the use of animal or human subjects.

In addition authors should include a statement informing about their proceeding in accordance with the law and with the consent for experimentation.

As concerning human subjects, the work  must be carried out according to The Declaration of Helsinki while animal experiments  should comply with the ARRIVE  guidelines  and be carried out according to U:K: Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986 or EU Directive 2010/63/EU or the U.S. Public Health Service Policy on Human Care and Use of Laboratory Animals and the Animal Welfare Act.

Any case details, personal information, images of patients included in the work  must be provided with consents, permission and releases which should be preserved by the author and produced to Edizioni Internazionali srl, Divisione EDIMES Edizioni Medico-Scientifiche - Via Riviera, 39, 27100 Pavia, Italy on request.

In their manuscript authors should reveal  any inappropriate financial and personal relationships with other people so as to avoid any suspect of conflict of interest.

All sources of financial support  as well as the role of any possible sponsors in the various steps  of the work  must be disclosed.

Among the potential conflicts of interest the following ones should be included: employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, paid expert testimony, patent applications, grants or other funding.

Any errors or inaccuracies found by an author in his/her published work must be notified to the editor or publisher so as to cooperate with the editor to correct the paper even if the editor learns   the error from a third party. The Editor/Publisher will be in charge of communicating the error/inaccuracy by an "Errata corrige" article to be published in the next issue of the journal.

An author can manipulate images just to improve  clarity and not to remove or introduce a feature within an image or to eliminate any information from the original. If so he/she can be charged with ethical abuse.

 

For more details see Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals Updated December 2019at the following website http://www.icmje.org/icmje-recommendations.pdf

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