Ethics statement

  1. Ethical policies and instructions for authors

I.1. Open access, copyright, and archiving policies

All articles published in the Iberoamerican Journal of Science Measurement and Communication (IJSMC) are published in open access without subscription or restriction.

Each manuscript is published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0) license. Authors can redistribute the material in any medium or format. They can also adapt, transform, and build upon the material if the license terms are followed.

Authors retain rights to their articles.

Articles are archived in CLOCKSS, LOCKSS, and the National Library of Estonia.

I.2. Article Processing Charges (APCs)

The journal charges 700 euros to support open access, which is paid once the article is accepted. Discounts apply to certain authors. More information can be found here.

I.3. Editorial process

I.3.1. Post-submission stage

Once an article is submitted, the Editor-in-Chief (EiC) checks its content relevance, completeness of metadata, technical quality, plagiarism, and presentation. At this stage, the EiC might reject the proposal if they consider it unsuitable for peer review.

The journal uses iThenticate to detect text similarity with other published materials. The EiC assesses every similarity report, guaranteeing that no more than 15% of similarity is detected, if that percentage of text has been properly cited.

I.3.2. Editorial assignment and review phase

Two external reviewers of considerable expertise are assigned when the EiC moves the manuscript to the peer review phase. Double-blind is the peer-review method employed. The reviewers are assigned by the EiC, or a potential Handling Editor that he/she assigns from the editorial board. Reviewers perform voluntary work but are asked to consider timeliness, confidentiality, possible conflict of interest, and ethical behavior.

I.3.3. Editorial decision

Once the review process is completed, the EiC is solely responsible for making the final decision. If an article is handled by a designated editorial board member, he/she can only recommend a decision, which the EiC finally approves. The decisions can be one of the following:

  • Accepted
  • Considered with minor revisions
  • Considered with major revisions
  • Rejected

For each decision, the authors will receive a notification with the details and possible next steps.

I.4. Editorial policies

We ensure high-quality content is published using transparent and trusted research practices. We follow all the guidelines and best publication practices defined by the Committee of Publication Ethics (COPE).

I.4.1. Authorship

The IJSMC demands that all authors listed in the manuscripts have taken real responsibility during the research process and article creation. We encourage the corresponding authors, project leaders, or institutions to avoid adding people who did not contribute to the research output (Gift authors) or excluding those who did. Its name is not finally included (Ghost authors). Deciding on the authorship before the project is written is strongly recommended to prevent any conflict.

Before considering a manuscript for possible publication, a decision must be made regarding the definition of ‘corresponding author’ and ‘order of authors’. The corresponding author will play a communicative role since the Editorial Office will contact him/her during the evaluation, production, and post-publication processes.

A Contribution Statement needs to be submitted with the manuscript where the roles per author are described based on the CRediT taxonomy. This information will be published together with the full text. All those whose contributions are not listed in this Taxonomy names can be listed in the Acknowledgements section.

If someone requests name exclusion from a manuscript or even inclusion pre or post-publication, a formal declaration letter must be submitted to the Editorial Office . All authors must sign this letter, and the reasons for inclusion/exclusion should be substantially exposed. The Editorial Office will investigate this request, and we will provide information about the decision and next steps.

I.4.2. Complaints

Any misconduct or questionable practice allegation must be reported to the Editorial Office during the pre- or post-publication stages. We will follow COPE’s Core Practices to decide on any ethical issue.

I.4.3. Conflict of interest

A Conflict of Interest (COI) occurs when authors have personal, academic, or financial relationships with third parties that could influence the content of research work submitted for publication. When submitting any manuscript, authors are requested to complete the COI Statement by which all potential interests are declared, if applicable. In this statement, the authors should state the following:

  • Any institution receives direct or indirect resources to complete the research work.
  • Financial relationships with entities that supported the performance of the research work.
  • Patents and copyrights, whether pending, issued, licensed, and/or receiving royalties related to the research work.
  • Personal relationships with people who can influence the research content.

These are some examples of COI statements:

  • ⦍Author name⦎ has received ⦍state the received benefits⦎ from ⦍ Institution name or equivalent⦎.
  • ⦍Author name⦎ has ⦍ type of relationship⦎ with ⦍ Institution name or equivalent⦎.

If there is no conflict of interest, the authors must declare the following:

  • The author(s) declare that there is no conflict of interest.

I.4.4. Research data, reproducibility, and transparency

The authors are encouraged to share the data behind the research work. Our policy is to make all scientific data of open access since we follow the Guidelines on Open Access to Scientific Publications and Research Data defined by the European Commission . The data-sharing process can occur in the following ways:

  • Depositing data in a public repository. The Registry of Research Data Repositories can help select a platform to host the data. The link(s) to access the data should be included in the manuscript.
  • Data as supplementary material. Authors can submit supplementary files containing relevant data to share during the submission stage. These files will be available during peer review and published with the manuscript's full text.
  • Data on request. Before the publication process, authors may be asked for research data at the request of editors or reviewers.

Citations to research data should appear in the full text in the reference section. Authors need to follow the Joint Declaration of Data Citation Principles to provide the correct citation and referencing of the data.

I.4.5. Statement of data consent

To make science more transparent, open, and reproducible, we encourage authors to submit a data statement, which will be publicly available. These are some examples:

  • The (Name/type of data) generated during the development of this study has been deposited in (Repository name), and it is accessible at (Data URL).
  • The (Name/type of data) generated during the development of this study has been included in the manuscript.
  • The (Name/type of data) generated during the development of this study has been published as supplementary material.
  • The (Name/type of data) generated during the development of this study cannot be freely available due to (reasons), but they might be requested to (contact information).
  • The (Name/type of data) generated during the development of this study cannot be freely available due to restrictions imposed by (Name of the restrictor).
  • No data have been generated during the development of this study.

I.4.5.1. Policies for studies involving human subjects

Before submitting a manuscript in which human subjects were involved, the following must be considered:

  • Authors must obtain informed consent from all participants before involving them in the study.
  • Participants must be provided with clear, understandable information about the research purpose, procedures, risks, benefits, and rights.
  • Consent forms should be written in language appropriate for the target population and include contact information for the authors and relevant institutional review boards.
  • Participation in the study must be voluntary, and participants should be informed of their right to withdraw at any time without consequence.
  • Coercion or undue influence in recruiting participants is strictly prohibited.
  • Authors must ensure the confidentiality of participants' data, including any personal information collected during the study.
  • Data should be anonymized whenever possible to protect participants' privacy.
  • Any exceptions to confidentiality (such as instances of harm or illegal activity) must be clearly outlined to participants in advance.
  • Researchers should identify and minimize potential risks to participants, including physical, psychological, social, and economic risks.
  • If the research involves risks, authors must justify them and take appropriate measures to mitigate them.
  • Research protocols should be reviewed and approved by an institutional review board or ethics committee to ensure the adequacy of risk mitigation measures.
  • Authors must treat participants with respect, dignity, and sensitivity to their cultural backgrounds, beliefs, and values.
  • Any deception or manipulation of participants should be justified by the research objectives and minimized to the extent possible.
  • Participants should be debriefed after the study, including clarification of any deception used, and provided with relevant information about the study's outcomes.
  • Authors must adhere to all applicable laws, regulations, and professional guidelines governing research involving human subjects, including obtaining necessary approvals from regulatory bodies.
  • Any deviations from the approved research protocol must be reported promptly to the relevant authorities.
  • Authors are obligated to publicly disseminate the outcomes of their studies involving human participants and are responsible for ensuring the thoroughness and precision of their publication. This encompasses sharing negative, inconclusive, and positive findings through pre-print servers or data-sharing platforms. Moreover, researchers must disclose their funding sources, institutional affiliations, and any potential conflicts of interest in their publication. Manuscripts that fail to adhere to these guidelines will not be considered for publication.

I.4.6. Post-publication discussions, corrections, and retractions

In the event of identifying errors, plagiarism, content falsification, data manipulation, or legal issues regarding privacy and copyright in a published article, the IJSMC follows a stringent retraction or correction procedure based on COPE’s Guidelines. Authors are encouraged to promptly notify the Editorial Office of any such issues, providing detailed explanations and evidence to support their claims. Upon receiving such notifications, the editorial team initiates an investigation involving relevant experts, if necessary, to assess the validity and severity of the identified concerns. Depending on the nature and extent of the issues, the journal may issue a retraction, formally withdrawing the article from publication, or a correction, where errors are acknowledged and rectified while maintaining the integrity of the original work. Retractions and corrections are accompanied by transparent statements outlining the reasons for the action, ensuring accountability and maintaining the trust of the scientific community and readership.

  1. 5. Preprints

Authors can use preprint servers to host their chapters before submission to the book series. This will not count as multiple or redundant publications. Some preprint servers that can be used are  ArXiv ,  SSRN bioRxiv ,  psyArXiv ,  SocArXiv ,  engrXiv ,  e-LIS ,  RePEc , etc.

  1. Ethical policies and instructions for reviewers

II.1. Peer reviewing for the IJSMC

Peer reviewers lie at the core of the scholarly publishing process since they play a critical role in content quality control. For that reason, we encourage the reviewers to submit comprehensive, constructive, objective, and transparent reports.

There are two ways to become a reviewer: (1) by direct invitation from our editors or (2) by registering as a reviewer in the editorial management system. Reviewers should provide accurate contact information in each case, including affiliation and research interests.

Accepting a review invitation implies the following:

  • Agree to review if you have the required expertise to assess the manuscript.
  • Provide accurate personal and professional contact information to the editors.
  • Accept if there are no conflicting interests with the authors. Competing interests may be personal, financial, intellectual, professional, political, or religious.
  • Follow the journal guidelines on peer review.
  • Undertake a response to the peer review within the required timeframe.

II.2. Steps to conduct a review

  • Read the manuscript and any supplementary material if it exists. In case of missing materials or incomplete information, contact only the editor who invited you to review.
  • Confidentiality during the peer review process is essential. Therefore, do not use information derived from this process for your or others’ benefit; no one else can be involved in reviewing the manuscript.
  • If a competing interest is detected during the review process, inform the editor immediately.

II.3. Writing the review report

The review report should be written in the format required by the journal.

  • Reviewers are encouraged to be objective and constructive and, if possible, provide references to support general statements. Notice that peer review aims to help authors to improve the manuscript.
  • As a reviewer, you can provide confidential comments to the editor and a recommendation to acceptconsider with minor revisionsconsider with major revisions, or reject the manuscript. The final recommendation should be consistent with the generated review comments. Please inform the editor about the assessed sections if you have not reviewed the whole manuscript.
  • The following criteria are asked at the time to assess the manuscript:
    • The objective, methodology, and results are consistent.
    • The research questions or hypotheses are valid.
    • The study is original.
    • Previous research findings have been presented, discussed, and compared with the study results.
    • The language and presentation of the figures and tables are clear.
    • The references are complete and coherent with the manuscript's content and the field's status.

II.4. Publication ethics

The COPE Guidelines inspire our editorial practices. Therefore, we invite reviewers to deepen into the COPE Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers . Any suspicious misconduct during the review process should be informed to the Editorial Office .

II.5 Acknowledgment to reviewers

All those who have acted as reviewers, their names will be publicly available on the journal’s website. Upon requests, certificates will also be generated.

III. Ethical policies and instructions for editors

III.1. Editor(s)-in-Chief’s roles and responsibilities

The EiCs oversee the following:

  • Make initial reviews of manuscripts to ensure they are within the thematic scope and meet the basic requirements for possible peer review.
  • Handle manuscripts if they are within their research area or assign a competent editorial board member.
  • Evaluate possible conflicts of interest that affect the transparency of the editorial process.
  • Invite a minimum of two external reviewers per manuscript.
  • Make final decisions regarding peer-reviewed articles from regular and special issues.
  • Ensure that the deadlines established within the editorial process are met.
  • Suggest potential modifications to the thematic scope of the journal.
  • Assess special issues.
  • Promote the journal.
  • Manage the editorial team, which means they can remove inactive members and bring in new members who are experts in the field.

The editorial board members have the following responsibilities:

  • Reviewing manuscripts: to review submitted manuscripts if they are invited by the EiC, assessing their quality, relevance, and adherence to the journal's scope and guidelines.
  • Providing expertise: to offer their expertise in specific subject areas, providing insights and guidance to authors, reviewers, and the editorial team.
  • Decision making: to contribute to recommend editorial decisions, including the selection of reviewers, acceptance or rejection of manuscripts, and overall strategic direction of the journal.
  • Promoting the journal: to help promote the journal within their networks and academic communities, increasing visibility and attracting high-quality submissions.
  • Peer review management: to oversee the peer review process, coordinating reviewers, evaluating feedback, and recommending final decisions on manuscript acceptance.
  • Editorial development: to contribute to developing editorial policies, guidelines, and initiatives to enhance the journal's quality, impact, and reputation.
  • Conflict resolution: to resolve conflicts of interest, disputes among authors or reviewers, or other ethical issues arising during the publication process.
  • Continuous improvement: to provide feedback and suggestions for improving the journal's processes, content, and overall effectiveness, contributing to its ongoing growth and development.

III.2. Peer review and decision making

Peer review ensures that the published materials have the highest quality standards. For this reason, it is considered the most critical phase in the scholarly publication process. The stages of this process are the following:

  • Initial review to ensure that the paper complies with a minimum of quality in terms of content and format.
  • Invite two external reviewers directly and carry out the remaining editorial process.
  • Invite two external reviewers to assess the manuscript. Reviewers should be experts in the topic they are proposing to assess, they must not be affiliated with the authors’ institution, and both reviewers should not belong to the same institution.
  • Make a final decision based on the reviewers’ comments. A third reviewer must be invited if the reviewers’ reports are entirely opposed. The review process closes when the manuscript has undergone all the necessary review rounds, and the author has considered all recommendations. The decisions to make will be the following:
    • Accepted
    • Considered with minor revisions
    • Considered with major revisions
    • Rejected

III.3. Special issue acceptance and Guest Editors appointment

The special issues (SI) proposal is an editorial strategy implemented by the Iberoamerican Journal of Science Measurement and Communication (IJSMC) to generate discussions on emerging and relevant topics that require deepening and consolidation. Every SI is solely evaluated by the EiC, and the following aspects are considered to approve it:

  • Relevance: alignment with the journal's scope and addresses current trends or gaps in knowledge within the discipline.
  • Novelty: contributions and innovative aspects of the proposed SI compared to existing literature.
  • Feasibility: feasibility in terms of scope, objectives, and the availability of potential contributors with relevant expertise.
  • Impact: impact on advancing knowledge, influencing policy or practice, and stimulating further research in the field.
  • Dissemination: strategies for promoting the special issue and reaching a wide audience through various channels, including conferences and social media.
  • Ethical considerations: Integration with our ethical principles such as transparency, rigor, and inclusivity, ensuring fairness in the selection process and representation of diverse perspectives.

The SI proposals are open the whole year, and there are no restrictions regarding the geographic coverage of the topics. The EiC determines whether the Guest Editor(s), whether external or not, has the required trajectory to perform this editorial role. It is worth noting that:

  • Guest Editors do not make a final decision over the submitted manuscripts; they only recommend a decision. The final decision is made by the EiC.
  • Guest Editors cannot submit papers to their SI. They can only write a Guest Editorial introducing the SI.
  • All papers submitted to the SI will undergo the same review process as regular papers (See sections 3.1., I.3.2., and I.3.3. on this page). The same ethical guidelines must be followed by the authors submitting to the SI.

Instructions on how to propose a SI can be found here.

III.4. Publication ethics

If an Editor detects any misconduct, including authorship disputes, plagiarism, a duplicate submission, conflict of interest, or content manipulation, they should report it to the Editorial Office. We will follow the COPE’s Guidelines to proceed in every single case.