Publication Ethics And Malpractice Statement
The Journal of Veterinary and Animal Sciences of Kerala Veterinary and Animal Sciences University remains committed to publishing and transmitting original, high quality content. All the editorial operations of the JVAS are governed by underlying endorsement of fair and transparent ethical standards that keep the interests of all stakeholders in the publishing ecosystem in high regard with concomitant failure to compromise on the originality and accuracy of manuscripts published. The policies of this journal are closely aligned with the core practices in this regard, identified by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE).
Responsibilities of the Editorial Board
The Editorial Board of JVAS espouses its duty of guardianship over all the steps in the processing and publishing of articles in this journal seriously while recognising the ethical and other responsibilities vested in this duty. The specific responsibilities of the Editorial Board include:
- The Editorial Board reaffirms its commitment to providing all assistance to prospective reviewers for discharging their duties in the peer review process of this journal.
- The Editorial Board has in place a peer review system that is designed to reduce covert and redundant publications.
- The Editorial Board has in place a system to ensure that all published articles are secured in a permanent repository which is available on the web site of the journal.
- The Editorial Board has a zero tolerance policy to plagiarism and all articles submitted are screened in this regard.
- The Editorial Board welcomes and considers cogent criticism of work that has already been published in the JVAS and at the same time offers authors of articles subjected to such criticism the opportunity to voice their response to the critical remarks so received.
- The Editorial Board welcomes original research including those that challenge previous published work in this and other journals and encourages the publication of work that negative results as well.
- The Editorial Board reiterates commitment to ensuring that established standards and procedures are adhered to in ensuring that research participants are taken into confidence and fully comprehend both the nature of the research and its implications on themselves and others.
- The Editorial Board endorses a policy that mandates that articles involving animal or clinical studies contain a statement of clearance from the concerned ethics committee and that all animal trials are conducted with minimum detriment to animals.
- The Editorial Board endorses a policy that affirms the right of the individual to decide what happens to any identifiable personal data gathered. Manuscripts that contain any details, images or videos relating to individuals can be considered for publication only if prior informed consent for the publication of such personal data was obtained from the participants. This should find mention in the article as well.
- The Editorial Board strives to ensure that editorial decisions are not influenced by the origins of the manuscript such as nationality, ethnicity, race, religion or political views of the author. The decision to publish is solely vested with the Editorial Board as advised by the peer review process.
Responsibilities of Authors
- Authorship of the article
Authors should ensure that authorship of the article is strictly confined and limited to individuals who have significantly contributed to the creation, planning, implementation and the interpretation of the study concerned. It is imperative that all major contributors be included as co-authors. In cases where there are other individuals who have played a lesser role in the conduct of the study, they may be acknowledged or even be listed as persons who contributed to the study. It is the responsibility of the corresponding author to ensure that the aforesaid matter with regard to authorship is taken care of while submitting the article. The corresponding author will also ensure that all co authors have gone through the submitted version of the article and have consented to the article being submitted for publication in the form that it is submitted.
- Acknowledgement of sources
The authors are also vested with the moral responsibility of ensuring that all work that has been referred to in the submitted article are duly and correctly acknowledged. Authors are also bound to mention publications that were significant in shaping the reported work. Due care to obtain explicit written consent from sources of information that are private in nature such as conversations, correspondences, discussions and the like should also be made and included in the submission. Acknowledgements of financial support should also find a mention in the article.
- Multiple publications
The journal views the concurrent or multiple publications of papers that focus, to a great extent, on the same research, as constituting unethical publication behaviour which is unacceptable. Manuscripts that have been submitted to another journal and that are in the process of review should not be submitted elsewhere; this journal acknowledges the copyrights of such manuscripts and any attempt by authors to resort to such a practice is viewed as being unethical. Authors should ensure that the paper being submitted to this journal has not been previously published and is not under consideration for publication elsewhere.
- Standard of reporting
It is imperative that authors ensure that the article under consideration for submission to this journal is written in such a manner that an accurate description of the work undertaken along with an objective introspection on its significance is forthcoming. The accuracy of the data used in the paper is the responsibility of the author(s). Details of significance relating to the work along with the appropriate references should be provided in the paper for the benefit of other interested researchers. This journal views statements that are intrinsically inaccurate to be an unacceptable breach of ethical behaviour expected of authors.
- Access to raw data
Authors are expected to keep ready raw data used in the submitted paper in case the peer review process requires an assessment of the same to facilitate the publication process.
- Conflict of interest
Any financial or substantive conflict of interest that might be construed to imply possible sources of influence on the findings of the manuscript submitted should be disclosed by the authors. Potential sources of conflict of interest include receipt of grants or any funding and paid expert testimony. In all cases the sources of funding, if any, should be mandatorily disclosed.
- Possible errors in arising in published works
Should an author become aware of an error of significance, or any possible statement/finding that is inaccurate in an article that has already been published by the journal, it would be the mandatory obligation of the author to bring the same to the notice of the Editor and cooperate fully with the journal to retract the paper/make the necessary changes in the paper. In event of an instance of significant error in a published work being brought to the notice of the Editor by a third party, it would be the mandatory obligation of the author to provide evidence to the Editor alluding to the correctness of the paper published or to immediately retract/correct the paper.
Responsibility of reviewers
- Critical facilitators of the peer review process
All the content of the journal will be subjected to peer review which would entail seeking and obtaining advice on each manuscript from individual reviewers who would be proven experts in the field concerned. This process is designed in a manner so as to assist the editor/editorial board in taking publishing decisions and helping authors to improve on the quality of their manuscripts.
- Confidentiality of manuscripts
The peer review process of the journal is a confidential process and all manuscripts submitted to the journal for review must be considered so. Reviewers are advised that on no account should any information regarding a manuscript be disclosed to a third party without the explicit approval of the editor.
- Punctuality and objectivity in the review process
An offer to review a manuscript should be considered by a prospective reviewer in the light of the time frame proposed by the editor and the competence of the review as perceived by her/him. In event of the time frame for review of the article being inadequate to the prospective reviewer, it would be in the best interests of all parties concerned that she/he declines the offer. Similarly if the prospective reviewer strongly feels that she/he is not suitably qualified to review the paper, the journal would appreciate a request from the reviewer to absolve her/him from the review process.
An objective and clearly stated assessment of the manuscript supported by relevant data or arguments, wherever appropriate should be the modus operandi of the each reviewer. Reviewers are strongly advised to refrain from making personal statements/ criticism of authors; rather, comments on the originality, redundancy or plagiarism of the submission should be forthcoming from reviewers.
- Complete acknowledgement of relevant published work
It would be contingent upon the reviewers to ensure that all possible work that is relevant to the manuscript that has not been cited by the author are identified and reported in the comments to the editor. Similarly reviewers should ensure that any material used in the manuscript that has been reported previously is accompanied by the relevant citation. Any substantial similarity or distinct overlap between the submitted article and any other published work that comes to the notice of the reviewer should be communicated to the editor.
- Freedom to comment on ethical issues
The journal accords all reviewers with unguarded freedom, within the framework of civility, to comment on all relevant possible ethical questions or instances of possible research misconduct that could arise in manuscripts under review. This includes any research design that is unethical per se, a situation wherein data on participant/patient consent is insufficient, or any instance wherein the interests of the research subjects, including animals, are compromised.