Publication Ethics and Publication Malpractice Policy

IMCC Journal of Science is committed to maintaining the highest standards of publication ethics and to supporting ethical research practices and adheres to the COPE Code of Conduct for Journal Publishers. The journal editors follow the COPE Code of Conduct for Journal Editors and refer reviewers to the COPE Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers as appropriate. Allegations of misconduct are investigated in accordance with the COPE Best Practice Guidelines as far as is practicable. 

Authors should present an objective discussion of the significance of research work as well as enough detail and references to permit others to replicate the experiments. Fraudulent or knowingly inaccurate statements constitute unethical behavior and are unacceptable. Review articles should also be objective, comprehensive, and accurate accounts of the state of the art. The authors should ensure that their work is entirely original, and if the work of others has been used, it should be appropriately acknowledged. 

Plagiarism in all its forms constitutes unethical publishing behavior and is unacceptable. Submitting the same manuscript to more than one journal concurrently constitutes unethical publishing behavior and is unacceptable. Authors should not submit articles describing essentially the same research to more than one journal. The corresponding author should ensure that there is a full consensus of all co-authors in approving the final version of the paper and its submission for publication. 

Editors should evaluate manuscripts exclusively based on their academic merit. An editor must not use unpublished information in the editor’s own research without the express written consent of the author. Editors should take reasonable responsive measures when ethical complaints have been presented concerning a submitted manuscript or published paper. 

Any manuscripts received for review must be treated as confidential documents. Privileged information or ideas obtained through peer review must be kept confidential and not used for personal advantage. Reviews should be conducted objectively, and observations should be formulated clearly with supporting arguments, so that authors can use them for improving the paper. Any selected referee who feels unqualified to review the research reported in a manuscript or knows that its prompt review will be impossible should notify the editor and excuse himself from the review process. Reviewers should not consider manuscripts in which they have conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships or connections with any of the authors, companies, or institutions connected to the papers.

IMCC Journal of Science will publish research articles involving human subjects only after the author(s) has verified that that he/she/they has/have followed all laws and regulations concerning the protections afforded human subjects in research studies within the jurisdiction in which a research study they describe was conducted, and only after the Editorial Board of the IMCC Journal of Science has determined that sufficient protections have been afforded to the subjects of the study. The research protocol must have been approved by the appropriate institutional review board (IRB). In the case of exempt research, the IRB must have deemed the research protocol exempt and documentation must be made available to the IMCC Journal of Science upon request. Final decision to publish is that of the Editorial Board of the IMCC Journal of Science.

Manuscripts based on Data Set where the last data point occurred more than five years prior to review by the journal will not be considered for publication. This policy is in place to assure the timeliness of results published by the journal.

IMCC Journal of Science will publish articles only after the author(s) has/have confirmed that he/she/they has/have disclosed all potential conflicts of interest, and only if the resolution of conflict of interest is deemed favorable by the editorial board.

Policy for Investigating Complaints and Appeals

If the IMCC Journal of Science receives a complaint that a contribution infringes on copyright or other intellectual property rights or contains material inaccuracies, libelous materials, or otherwise unlawful materials, the Journal will investigate the complaint. Investigation will include a request that the parties involved substantiate their claims. The Journal will make a good faith determination whether or not to remove the allegedly wrongful material. A decision not to remove material will represent the Journal’s belief that the complaint is without sufficient foundation, or if well-founded, that a legal defense or exemption may apply, such as fair use in the case of copyright infringement or truthfulness of a statement in the case of libel. IMCC Journal of Science shall keep on record all documents related to the complaint and the investigation.

Manuscripts that are ultimately rejected by the Associate Editor, may be appealed to the Chief Editor of the journal. However, it is very rare that the Chief Editor will overturn a rejection by an Associate Editor that is based on blinded review.

Corrections, Retractions and Expressions of Concern

To better serve our researchers, librarians, and others in the academic community, IMCC Journal of Science believes clarity in the publishing record is a critical component of information distribution. Recognizing a published article as a finalized “Version of Record” establishes the expectation that it can be relied upon as accurate, complete, and citable. IMCC Journal of Science defines this Version of Record as the initial article publication for open access journals.

It is presumed that manuscripts report on work based on honest observations. However occasionally information becomes available with may contradict this. In such situations, IMCC Journal of Science applies Committee on Publication Ethics guidelines on corrections, retractions and expressions of concern.

Corrections. Errors in published papers may be identified in the form of a corrigendum or erratum when the Chief Editor considers it appropriate to inform the journal readership about a previous error and makes a correction to the error in the published article. The corrigendum or erratum will appear as a new article in the journal and will cite the original published article.

Retractions. Retractions are considered and published when there are severe errors in an article that invalidate the conclusions. Retractions are also made in cases where there is evidence of publication malpractice, such as plagiarism, duplicate publication, or unethical research. According to industry best practice and in accordance with COPE guidelines, IMCC Journal of Science implements the following procedure if a retraction is confirmed:

A retraction note titled “Retraction: [article title]” signed by the authors and/or the editor is published in a subsequent issue of the journal and listed in the contents list.

  • In the electronic version, a link is made to the original article.
  • The online article is preceded by a screen containing the retraction note. It is to this screen that the link resolves; the reader can then proceed to the article itself.
  • The original article is retained unchanged save for a watermark on the PDF indicating on each page that it has been “retracted.”

Editorial expressions of concern. Where substantial doubt arises as to the honesty or integrity of a submitted or published article, journal editors may consider issuing an expression of concern. However, expressions of concern should only be issued if an investigation into the problems relating to the article has proven inconclusive, and if there remain strong indicators that the concerns are valid.  Under some rare cases, an editorial expression of concern may also be issued when an investigation is underway, but a judgement will not be available for a considerable time. The expression of concern will be linked back to the published article it relates to.

Withdrawal. Articles may be withdrawn by corresponding author before accepting for publication. If it is accepted, it could be used only for Articles in Press which represent early versions of articles and sometimes contain errors or may have been accidentally submitted twice. Occasionally, but less frequently, the articles may represent infringements of professional ethical codes, such as multiple submission, bogus claims of authorship, plagiarism, fraudulent use of data or the like. Articles in Press (articles that have been accepted for publication but which have not been formally published and will not yet have the complete volume/issue/page information) that include errors, or are discovered to be accidental duplicates of other published article(s), or are determined to violate the journal publishing ethics guidelines in the view of the editors (such as multiple submission, bogus claims of authorship, plagiarism, fraudulent use of data or the like), may be “Withdrawn” from IMCC Journal of Science. Articles which have been published under an issue could not be withdrawn.

Article removal: legal limitations. In an extremely limited number of cases, it may be necessary to remove an article from the online database. This will only occur where the article is clearly defamatory, or infringes others’ legal rights, or where the article is, or we have good reason to expect it will be, the subject of a court order, or where the article, if acted upon, might pose a serious health risk. In these circumstances, while the metadata (Title and Authors) will be retained, the text will be replaced with a screen indicating the article has been removed for legal reasons.

Article replacement. In cases where the article, if acted upon, might pose a serious health risk, the authors of the original article may wish to retract the flawed original and replace it with a corrected version. In these circumstances the procedures for retraction will be followed with the difference that the database retraction notice will publish a link to the corrected re-published article and a history of the document.