Ethics of Publication

SCITEPRESS (Science and Technology Publications) publishes many conference proceedings every year, some of them on behalf of learned societies or similar organizations. SCITEPRESS aims to 'support the dissemination of knowledge and scientific and technical research results'. As such, SCITEPRESS adopts a neutral position on issues treated on papers within its Proceedings.

We are aware of the high responsibility that publication of a paper in an academic peer-reviewed conference entails. In fact, it serves several functions, one of which is to validate and preserve the results of research, besides sharing ideas that can be used to promote the scientific and technical advancement of Humanity. It is therefore important that these publications are accurate and trustworthy. The act of publishing involves many parties, each of which plays an important role in achieving these aims. It therefore follows that the author, the editor, the reviewer, the publisher, and the conference organizers have responsibilities to meet expected ethical standards at all stages in their involvement from submission to publication of a paper.

SCITEPRESS is committed to meeting and upholding standards of ethical behaviour at all stages of the publication process. We follow closely the recommendations of industry associations, such as the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE), that set standards and provide guidelines for best practices in order to meet these requirements.

Editorial Quality Control
Publication of proceedings is based on an independence principle, avoiding conflicts of interest, corporate or political influence. Our editorial processes are transparent to all involved parties, including reviewers, conference chairs and other academics involved in the conferences whose proceedings are published by SCITEPRESS.

Proposals submitted for our proceedings publishing programme are initially reviewed by a quality committee that analyses aspects such as the research activity of proponents and other parties involved, the review process, acceptance rate and other statistics related to scientific quality control. If the proposal is considered suitable for publication by SCITEPRESS, the proposal, along with sample material, may be sent to external and independent peer reviewers.

The acceptance or rejection of papers submitted to conference proceedings published by SCITEPRESS are made by reviewers nominated by the Program Committee chairs of the respective conferences and based on independent peer review reports.

Peer Review
Peer review is a standard procedure for proceedings publication at SCITEPRESS. In order to ensure that the review process works appropriately, we:
  • make available a dedicated information system, to facilitate rigorous, fair and effective peer review for all our publications;
  • encourage our editors and peer reviewers to familiarise themselves with and act in accordance with relevant best practice guidelines on peer review. Our proceedings editors and peer reviewers are encouraged to find additional information in the recommendations of the Committee on Publication Ethics.
  • support our editors and peer reviewers in investigating and acting on any suspected cases of manipulated or fraudulent peer review;
  • protect the confidentiality of participants in the peer review process where anonymity forms part of that publication’s peer review process. We also expect our publishing partners, authors and peer reviewers to uphold any relevant confidentiality arrangements for each book or journal and provide necessary information to support this.

Appeals and Complaints
We consider appeals on editorial decisions for proceedings, but only when new information relevant to the editorial decision has been made available, or if there is reason to believe we did not follow the Committee on Publication Ethics Guidelines. The contact available to all concerned parties is publishingethics@scitepress.org.

COPE provides extensive resources on authorship and authorship disputes, and we encourage anyone involved in editorial decisions to familiarise themselves with these resources.
There are two main problems with authorship, that we encourage authors to avoid:
  • Putting down names of people who took little or no part in the research (gift authorship)
  • Leaving out names of people who did take part (ghost authorship).
We integrate with emerging industry standards (for example, ORCID) to increase transparency in authorship.

Plagiarism is defined as ‘submitting as one’s own work, irrespective of intent to deceive, that which derives in part or in its entirety from the work of others without due acknowledgement. It is both poor scholarship and a breach of academic integrity.’
Examples of plagiarism include copying (using another person’s language and/or ideas as if they are one’s own), by:
  • quoting verbatim another person’s work without due acknowledgement of the source;
  • paraphrasing another person’s work by changing some of the words, or the order of the words, without due acknowledgement of the source;
  • using ideas taken from someone else without reference to the originator;
  • cutting and pasting from the Internet to make a pastiche of online sources;
  • submitting someone else’s work as part of one’s own without identifying clearly who did the work.
For example, not attributing research contributed by others to a joint project.
We do not tolerate plagiarism in any of our publications, and we reserve the right to check all suspect submissions through appropriate plagiarism checking tools.
Submissions containing suspected plagiarism, in whole or part, will be rejected. If plagiarism is discovered post-publication, a retraction policy is implemented, in line with COPE’s Retraction Guidelines.

Duplicate and Redundant Publication
When a work, or a substantial part of a work, is published more than once, whether in the same or in a different language, we check if there is substantial overlap without appropriate cross-referencing or justification for the overlap. Our policy is not to support duplicate or redundant publication, unless:
  • it is felt that editorially this will strengthen the academic discourse; and
  • we have clear approval from the original publication; and
  • it includes citation of the original source.
We are available to readers, reviewers and editors to raise any suspicion of duplicate or redundant publication. We are reachable by email via: publishingethics@scitepress.org.

We strive to follow COPE’s guidelines for Transparency and Best Practice in Scholarly Publishing and encourage authors, reviewers and editors to uphold these same principles.

Conflicts of interest
Authors submitting papers to publications of SCITEPRESS are required to declare any potential conflicts of interest, i.e. anything that could be considered or viewed as exerting an undue influence on the presentation, review and publication of their work, either financial, non-financial, professional or personal in nature.

Allegations of misconduct
The process for handling allegations, however they are brought to SCITEPRESS attention, is taken seriously. Both pre-publication and post-publication allegations of misconduct are acceptable and properly processed. The preferred incoming channel is email: publishingethics@scitepress.org.