European Geologist journal: Publication ethics statement

The European Geologist journal adheres to the guidelines described in the Principles of Transparency and Best Practice in Scholarly Publishing.

The Editorial Board of the European Geologist journal applies a rigorous peer-review process, together with strict ethical policies and standards. In case the Editorial Board becomes aware of any ethical issues, it is committed to investigating and taking necessary steps to maintain the integrity of the literature and ensure the safety of research participants.

 

Ethical guidelines for authors

Overview

Authors wishing to publish their papers in the European Geologist journal shall abide by the following:

  • Authors should accurately present their research findings and include an objective discussion of the significance of their findings.
  • All and only those who qualify for authorship should be indicated as authors.
  • Any facts that might be perceived as a possible conflict of interest of the author(s) must be disclosed in the paper prior to submission.
  • Data and methods used in the research need to be presented in sufficient detail in the paper so that other researchers can replicate the work. Raw data must be made publicly available unless there is a compelling reason.
  • Simultaneous submission of manuscripts to more than one journal is not permitted.
  • Original research results must be novel and not previously published, including being previously published in another language.
  • For any content previously published (including quotations, figures or tables), any necessary permission to publish must be obtained from the copyright holder.
  • Errors and inaccuracies found after publication shall be promptly communicated to the Editor-in-Chief.

This list is not exhaustive, and authors should be aware of local regulations and accepted norms within academic publishing.

Authorship

In order to qualify for authorship of a manuscript, authors shall satisfy the following criteria:

  • Substantial contribution to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work;
  • Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content;
  • Final approval of the version to be published;
  • 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.

Those who contributed to the work but do not qualify for authorship should be listed in the acknowledgments.

Any change to the author list during the editorial process or after publication should be approved by all authors, including any who have been removed. The corresponding author should act as a point of contact between the Editor-in-Chief and the other authors and should keep co-authors informed and involve them in major decisions about the publication. We reserve the right to request evidence of authorship, and changes to authorship after acceptance will be made at the discretion of the European Geologist journal.

Editorial Board members are permitted to submit to the European Geologist journal. However, they shall not be involved in the editorial process and are not allowed to make final decisions on their own work or those of close colleagues.

Author contributions

For complete transparency, all submitted manuscripts should include an authorship statement that specifies the contribution of each author. For research articles with several authors, a short paragraph specifying their individual contributions shall be provided. Authorship shall be limited to those who have contributed substantially to the work.

If authorship is retained by a consortium or group, this consortium or group should be listed as an author. Where work is presented by the author(s) on behalf of a consortium or group, this should be clarified in the author list, “on behalf of.” The consortium/group will not retain authorship and will only appear in the author list.

Plagiarism, image manipulation and data fabrication

Plagiarism is not acceptable in the European Geologist journal. Plagiarism includes copying text, ideas, images, or data from another source, even from your own publications, without providing credit to the original source.

Reuse of text that is copied from another source shall be quoted and the original source must be cited. If a study’s design or the manuscript’s structure or language have been inspired by previous studies, these studies shall explicitly be cited.

If plagiarism is detected during the review process, the manuscript may be rejected. If plagiarism is detected after publication, we may publish a Correction or retract the paper. The copy editor uses the Copyleak software to check for text duplication.

Image files shall not be manipulated or adjusted in any way that could lead to misinterpretation of the information provided by the original image. Irregular manipulation includes 1) introduction, enhancement, moving, or removing features from the original image, 2) grouping of images that should obviously be presented separately (e.g., from different parts of the same gel, or from different gels), or 3) modifying the contrast, brightness or colour balance to obscure, eliminate or enhance some information.

If irregular image manipulation is identified and confirmed during the peer review process, we may reject the manuscript. If irregular image manipulation is identified and confirmed after publication, we may correct or retract the paper.

Presented data shall be original and not inappropriately selected, manipulated, enhanced, or fabricated. This includes 1) exclusion of data points to enhance significance of conclusions, 2) fabrication of data, 3) selection of results that support a particular conclusion at the expense of contradictory data, 4) deliberate selection of analysis tools or methods to support a particular conclusion.

Citation policy

Authors shall ensure that for all material taken from other sources (including their own published writing), the source is clearly cited and that appropriate permission has been obtained.

Authors shall not engage in excessive self-citation of their own work.

Authors shall not copy references from other publications if they have not read the cited work.

Authors shall not preferentially cite their own or their friends’, peers’, or institution’s publications.

Authors shall not cite advertisements.

For further information we refer authors to a COPE discussion document on citation manipulation with recommendations for best practice.

 

Ethical guidelines for reviewers

Potential conflict of interests

Reviewers shall inform the Editor-in-Chief in case they hold a conflict of interests that may prejudice the review report, either in a positive or negative way. The Editorial Board will try to identify potential conflicts of interest as far as possible before invitation. Nevertheless, we appreciate the cooperation of reviewers in this matter. Reviewers who are invited to assess a manuscript they previously reviewed for another journal should not consider this as a conflict of interest in itself.

Confidentiality and anonymity

Reviewers shall keep the content of the manuscript, including the abstract, confidential. They must inform the Editor-in-Chief if they would like a student or colleague to complete the review on their behalf.

The European Geologist journal applies a single-blind peer review process. We kindly ask reviewers not to reveal their identity to the authors, either in their comments or in metadata for reports submitted in Microsoft Word or PDF format.

The European Geologist journal offers authors the possibility to publish review reports with their paper. Reviewers may sign an open review report but the reviewer’s name will not be revealed until publication and only with their explicit agreement.

 

Ethical guidelines for Editorial Board members

The Editorial Board ensures the integrity of the European Geologist journal’s editorial process. The following provides details on specific ethical aspects of their role.

If the Editor-in-Chief has ethical concerns about a manuscript sent for review or decision, or receives information about a possible ethical breach after publication, he shall inform the Editorial Board as soon as possible. The Editorial Board will then conduct an investigation according to COPE guidelines.

To support the Editor-in-Chief, checks are made by the Copy Editor. Checks include

  • Plagiarism, duplicate publication, and that necessary permission from the copyright holder to include already-published figures or images.
  • Author background and qualification.

When making a final acceptance decision on a manuscript, the Editor-in-Chief shall consider the following:

  • Any facts that might be perceived as a possible conflict of interest of the author(s) must be disclosed in the paper prior to submission.
  • Authors must accurately present their research findings and include an objective discussion of the significance of their findings.
  • Data and methods used in the research need to be presented in sufficient detail in the paper, so that other researchers can replicate the work.

 

Updating published papers

The European Geologist journal differentiates between Addendum, Erratum, Corrections, Retractions, Comments, and Expressions of Concern. Complaints made against papers or requests to update are thoroughly investigated by the Editorial Board with a final approval by the Editor-in-Chief. Other persons and institutions will be consulted as necessary, including university authorities, or experts in the field.

Addendum
If crucial results (e.g., missing grant number, additional affiliation, clarify some aspect of methods/analysis, etc) were unintentionally omitted from the original publication, the original article can be amended through an Addendum reporting these previously omitted results. The Addendum will be published, with article numbers added, in the current issue of the journal. A hyperlink to the Addendum will also be added to the original publication, but the original paper does not need to be updated.

Erratum
An Erratum is a published notification that a formatting change and other non-scientific changes (including changes to authorship) was made to a paper after issue release. The formatting issues may include missing or unclear figures, or text deleted by accident. Very minor errors that do not affect readability or meaning do not require an Erratum. We kindly ask all authors to proofread the final version very carefully. 

Corrections

Before issue release: prior to issue release, corrections on minor issues are directly made to the original, published version of the article on the journal’s website. If the changes may influence the result or conclusions, the Editorial Board will evaluate the changes. It may be necessary to issue a Correction or Retraction (see below).

After issue release: Any changes after publication that affect the scientific interpretation (e.g., data in a figure change, conclusions change, whole paragraph added, correct an equation, or add missing details about a method, etc) made to a paper are announced using a Correction. This is as separate publication that links to the original paper (which is updated). A note will also be added to the Article Versions Notes and to the abstract page, which informs the readers that an updated version was uploaded.

Retractions
Sometimes an article needs to be completely removed from the body of research literature. This could be due to inadvertent errors made during the research process, gross ethical breaches, fabrication of data, large amounts of plagiarism, or other reasons. Such articles threaten the integrity of scientific records and need to be retracted. The European Geologist journal follows the recommendations of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) for retraction. Potential Retractions are thoroughly investigated by the Editorial Board and approved by the Editor-in-Chief. Other persons and institutions will be consulted as necessary, including university authorities, or experts in the field. If a Retraction is published, the original publication is amended with a “RETRACTED” watermark, but will still be available on the journal’s website for future reference. However, retracted articles should not be cited and used for further research, as they cannot be relied upon.The Retraction is published, with page numbers added, as a separate item in the current issue of the journal, so that after issue release, the Retraction can be picked up by indexing & abstracting services. Partial Retractions might be published in cases where results are only partially wrong. A paper will only be completely removed in very exceptional circumstances, where leaving it online would constitute an illegal act or be likely to lead to significant harm.

Expression of concern

In case investigations into alleged or suspected research misconduct have not yet been completed or prove to be inconclusive, the Editorial Board may publish an Expression of concern, detailing the points of concern and what actions, if any, are in progress.

Comments and Replies
Comments are short letters from readers to the Editor questioning either the results reported or the experimental methods used in a specific article. Usually, a reader will approach the Editor-in-Chief, if he/she finds an article intriguing. In such circumstances, the Editorial Board may invite the reader to write a short and reasoned Comment on the article. After consideration and review by the Editor-in-Chief, the Comment may be published, in which case the Editorial Board will approach the authors of the article in question and invite them to prepare a Reply. If the reader’s complaints are substantiated, the authors or the Editorial Board may consequently publish a Correction or retract the paper entirely.

Both comments and replies will be refereed to ensure that

  • the comment addresses significant aspects of the original paper without becoming essentially a new paper;
  • the reply responds directly to the comment without becoming evasive;
  • the tone of both the comment and the reply is appropriate for a scientific journal.

A comment will first be sent to the Editorial Board for an initial check. If it can be proceeded, it will be sent to the author of the original paper, who will be given the opportunity to write a reply. Normally, the editor will provide a deadline for receipt of the reply in order to assure prompt publication of the discussion. If a reply is submitted in a timely way, the Editor-in-Chief will have both the comment and reply reviewed. If the original author chooses not to submit a reply, the Editor-in-Chief may choose to proceed without a reply.

In most cases, the Editor-in-Chief will invite previous reviewers to review both the Comment and Reply. After receiving review reports, editors will send the Reply and review reports to the author of Comment. The author will be given only one chance to revise the Comment.

The revised Comment and review reports will be sent to the authors of the Reply. The authors will also be given only one chance to revise the Reply.

More information on the European Geologist journal

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