Home > Publishing Support > Publication Ethics

In scientific publishing, ethics are crucial for upholding research integrity and credibility. The following principles form the foundation, guaranteeing openness and dependability in scholarly pursuits. They are not just formalities, they quietly safeguard the scientific journey from undue influences and ensure proper credit. As we navigate the complex realm of publication ethics, let us remember the straightforward simplicity needed in the pursuit of truth in science.

Research Ethics and Consent Guidelines

In the ethics of research, a strict dedication to principles is vital, securing the integrity of the scientific process. Key aspects require careful adherence to ethical guidelines, spanning research with humans, animals, cell lines, and plants.

  • Authors need to confirm in the manuscript that their research involving human participants received approval (or exemption) from the relevant institutional or national research ethics committee, and specify the committee's name.

  • Authors must affirm their adherence to ethical standards outlined in the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki or comparable standards. If there's uncertainty, authors should explain the reasons and provide explicit approval from an independent ethics committee or institutional review board for any questionable aspects.

  • Manuscripts should detail if the study was exempt from ethics approval, including the rationale. This approval, with the committee's name, must be stated in the Ethical Approval and Consent to Participate statement.

  • Editors may request additional ethics documentation, and any manuscripts with suspected ethical issues will be investigated according to COPE guidelines.

Studies with Human Participant

In experiments with human, a strict commitment to ethical rules is of great importance. Using human subjects requires stringent adherence to consent protocols, ensuring participants’ autonomy and preventing any potential coercion.

  • Researchers must obtain informed consent from participants, explaining the study's objectives, potential risks, and benefits.

  • Privacy and confidentiality must be upheld, with data anonymization whenever possible.

  • Vulnerable populations require heightened ethical consideration, necessitating additional safeguards.

  • Any manuscripts that raise concerns about ethical issues will undergo an investigation in accordance with COPE guidelines.


Consent to Participate is a fundamental ethical practice that respects the autonomy and rights of individuals involved in research.

  • A straightforward agreement where individuals willingly agree to take part in a research study is required. In simple terms, it means that people involved in the research give their permission to be part of the study voluntarily.

  • This agreement is essential to ensure that participants are aware of the study's purpose, potential risks, and benefits.

  • It emphasizes that participation is entirely their choice and that they can withdraw from the study at any time without facing any negative consequences.

  • Informed consent should be voluntary, free from any coercion or undue influence.

Authorization for Publication

  • Authorization for Publication is a pact where individuals grant permission for their information or findings to be published.

  • It signifies that the individuals involved in a study or research project provide their approval for the publication of the study's results, often including their data or experiences.

  • Authors must secure consent from participants for the publication of any identifiable information.

  • Maintaining the confidentiality of participants extends to the dissemination phase of research.

  • This agreement is crucial to ensure transparency and ethical practices in research.

  • It underscores the principle that the information shared will be used responsibly and in accordance with the agreed-upon terms. In essence, "Authorization for Publication" is a key step in respecting the rights and wishes of those contributing to the body of knowledge.

Clinical Trial

  • Clinical trials should be registered prospectively to enhance transparency and minimize selective reporting.

  • Pre-registration of trial protocols discourages undisclosed post hoc alterations, promoting research integrity.

Animal Research

  • Ensure that research procedures comply with relevant national or international guidelines.

  • Researchers undertaking animal studies are encouraged to refer to relevant guidelines for the proper care and handling of laboratory animals, such as the Eighth Edition of the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (Washington, DC: The National Academies Press)

  • Authors are encouraged to consult the ARRIVE guidelines or adhere to follow AALAS in preparing their manuscript for review.

  • Adherence to the 3Rs—Replacement, Reduction and Refinement—is mandatory in animal research.

  • Proper care, housing, and ethical considerations are paramount to ensure the well-being of animals.

  • Authors must obtain approval from the appropriate institutional ethics committee or animal use and care committee before conducting research involving animals.

  • Authors are required to incorporate a statement in the manuscript, specifying the names of the ethics committee(s) that approved the study and including permit or animal license numbers whenever possible.

  • In cases where a study is exempt from ethical approval, authors must explicitly mention this exemption in the manuscript, including the name of the relevant ethics committee that granted the exemption and provide the reasons for it.

Study Involving Cell Lines

  • Authors should provide clear descriptions of the cell lines used in their research, including their origin, to facilitate reproducibility. Provenance details for established cell lines must be indicated, with references to published papers or commercial sources.

  • For a new cell lines derived from human tissue, proper approval from an institutional review board or equivalent ethical committee, along with consent from the donor or next of kin, is essential. These details should be listed in the Declaration section of Ethical Approval and Consent to participate in the manuscript.

  • The International Cell Line Authentication Committee (ICLAC) offers additional information, and authors are recommended to verify human cell line identification and contamination on the NCBI database.

  • Utilizing cell lines, a key element in contemporary research, requires ethical conduct.

  • It is essential to be transparent about the origin of cell lines and to commit to responsible use and proper attribution.

  • Researchers must responsibly manage these biological tools and be aware of the ethical implications of their manipulations.

Study of Plants

  • Research involving plants, whether cultivated or wild, and the collection of plant materials must adhere to guidelines set by the authors' institution(s) and relevant national or international regulations. Field studies should comply with local legislation, and the manuscript should include a declaration confirming obtained permissions and/or licenses.

  • Voucher specimens should be deposited in a public herbarium or another accessible collection. The manuscript should contain details about the voucher specimen, including identification information and the responsible individual for the identification process.

  • Ethical engagement with plants includes considerations of ecological impact and sustainable practices.

  • Researchers must be mindful of the intrinsic value of plant life, avoiding unnecessary harm.

  • Research work involving the endangered plants (species) should adhere to the policies outlined IUCN Statement & CITES.



Authorship gives credit to individuals who have contributed to scientific efforts, reflects responsibility and accountability for published research work, and determines promotion and credit for authors.

It is essential to establish clear guidelines and criteria for authorship to ensure fairness and integrity in the research process. This is important because authorship has implications not only for individual researchers but also for the scientific community as a whole.

Contributions involve designing and conducting experiments, analyzing data, interpreting results, and writing and revising the manuscript, etc. For details of contributions, please refer to CRediT. Authorship is not merely a formality or acknowledgement, it carries significant weight in the academic domain. Authors are also responsible for accurately reporting their findings and providing proper citations to acknowledge the work of others. 

Co-Authors: Someone who has made a significant contribution to a journal article, sharing responsibility and accountability for the published research results. For all Nexus Press Proceedings/Journals/books, co-authors should follow the ICMJE guidelines on co-authors authorship. Where authorship criteria are referenced in the ICMJE guidelines, authors should apply the criteria for the applicable Nexus Press publications.

Corresponding Author: In cases where multiple authors collaborate on an article, a corresponding author is selected for responsible for managing all communication regarding the article, signing the publishing agreement on behalf of all authors, and ensuring the accuracy of contact details. The corresponding author is also responsible for coordinating the agreed-upon order of author names and verifying the correctness of affiliations.

Affiliations: The corresponding author is responsible for verifying the accuracy of all co-authors' affiliations. Any proposed changes to affiliations require a valid reason and accompanying documentation. The Editor in Chief will review and approve such requests. 

Note: multiple corresponding authors are also acceptable for a manuscript and the above described requirements are applicable in this case.

Changes in Authorship

Changes to authorship after submission are allowed only in exceptional circumstances and must align with our authorship criteria. The corresponding author is responsible for obtaining confirmation from all co-authors.


Procedure for Authorship Changes

  • To request an authorship change, contact the Journal Editorial Office or Editorial team initially.

  • To initiate an authorship change, the corresponding author must submit a completed Authorship Change Request form to the editorial office.

  • All authors, including those added or removed, must agree to changes in authorship, whether before or after publication.

  • The Editor, and at times, the publisher, will review the submitted form to check whether the authorship changes comply with the journal authorship policies. Authorship changes are at the Editor's discretion, and they may refuse changes not in accordance with our authorship policies.


Post-Publication Changes

  • Changes to co-authors or corresponding authors after publication may be considered following COPE's authorship guidelines. See our Correction policy.

  • Submit any requests for changes through the completed Authorship Change Request form. If authorship changes are necessary after publication, they will be addressed through a post-publication notice. Any changes must adhere to our authorship criteria.


Journal-Specific Policies

Some journals at Nexus Press prohibit authorship changes post-submission, check the specific journal homepage or 'instructions for authors' page for specific guidelines.

Conflicts of Interest

Conflicts of interest (COIs, also known as 'competing interests') can arise when external factors may reasonably be seen as influencing the impartiality of the research work or its evaluation.

  • COIs can manifest at any point in the research process, from experimentation to manuscript preparation, and through to publication.

  • Authors should disclose all conflicts of interest, including those don't always hinder publication or participation in the review process.

  • Clear declaration of all potential conflicts, whether influential or not, enables informed decision-making by others.

  • If uncertain, it is essential to disclose potential conflicts or seek guidance from the editorial office.

  • Failure to declare interests can lead to sanctions.

  • Submissions with undisclosed conflicts that later come to light may face rejection.

  • Discovery of conflicts post-publication can jeopardize the academic reputation of authors, editors, and the journal.

  • Published articles might require reassessment, publication of a corrigendum, or even retraction in severe cases.

  • Further information on COIs can be found in the guidance provided by the ICMJE and WAME.

Conflicts Include the Following

Financial: This includes funding, payments, goods, or services received or expected by the authors, related to the subject of the research work or from an organization with a vested interest in the work's outcome.

Affiliations: Authors should disclose if they are employed by, serve on the advisory board of, or are a member of an organization with a stake in the research work's outcome.

Intellectual Property: Authors should reveal any patents or trademarks owned by themselves or their organization that might influence the research work.

Personal: This category encompasses relationships, friendships, family ties, and other close personal connections that could impact the research work.

Ideology: Authors must disclose any beliefs or involvement in activism relevant to the research work, such as political or religious affiliations.

Academic: Authors should identify any associations with competitors or individuals whose research work is being critiqued in the manuscript.



  • Authors are required to comprehensively disclose any potential interests in a dedicated 'Conflicts of Interest' section. This disclosure should provide an explanation of why the disclosed interest could potentially present a conflict.

  • In cases where authors have no conflicts of interest to declare, they should explicitly state, "The author(s) declare(s) that there are no conflicts of interest regarding the publication of this paper."

  • The responsibility for ensuring that coauthors make their interest declarations lies with the submitting authors.

  • Authors are obligated to disclose current or recent sources of funding, which encompasses article processing charges and other forms of payments, goods, or services that could potentially exert influence on the research work.

  • The 'Funding Statement' should include a comprehensive declaration of all funding sources, irrespective of whether they pose a conflict of interest or not.

Involvement of individuals other than the authors should be disclosed if they meet any of the following criteria:

  • They have an interest in the research work's outcome.

  • They are affiliated with an organization that has an interest in the research work.

  • They were employed or funded by a supporting entity in activities such as commissioning, conception, planning, design, execution, analysis, manuscript preparation, editing, or the decision to publish.

Conflicts of interest that have been disclosed will be reviewed by the editor and reviewers and included in the published article.


Editors and Reviewers

Editors and reviewers should abstain from participating in a submission when they:

  • Have a recent publication or current submission with any author.

  • Share or have recently shared an affiliation with any author.

  • Collaborate or have recently collaborated with any author.

  • Have a close personal connection to any author.

  • Possess a financial interest in the subject of the research work.

  • Feel incapable of maintaining objectivity.

Reviewers should disclose any additional interests in the 'Confidential' section of the review form, which will be taken into account by the editor. Both editors and reviewers must also disclose if they have previously engaged in discussions about the manuscript with the authors.


Plagiarism is the act of presenting someone else's ideas, words, or work as one's own without proper acknowledgment or permission. It involves the unauthorized use of another person's intellectual property, such as text, ideas, images, or data, and is considered a serious breach of academic and professional integrity. Plagiarism can take various forms, including copying and pasting from sources without citation, paraphrasing without giving credit, and submitting someone else's work as one's own.

The consequences of plagiarism can be severe and may include academic penalties such as failing a course, expulsion from an educational institution, or damage to one's professional reputation. Institutions and organizations often have strict policies and guidelines to address and prevent plagiarism, emphasizing the importance of originality, honesty, and ethical conduct in research and writing.

To avoid plagiarism, it is essential to properly cite all sources used in academic or professional work, including quotes, paraphrased content, and references. Understanding and following citation styles, such as APA, MLA, or Chicago, is crucial in maintaining academic integrity and giving proper credit to the original authors. Ultimately, upholding ethical standards in research and writing contributes to a culture of trust and credibility in academic and professional communities.


Any suspected violations of our publication ethics policies, both pre- and post-publication, and any concerns related to research ethics, should be reported to our Research Integrity Team at info@nexus-press.com.

In cases where errors substantially impact the conclusions or there is evidence of misconduct, this may necessitate retraction or the issuance of an expression of concern in accordance with the COPE Retraction Guidelines.


All authors will be requested to approve the notice's content.