The editor of a peer-reviewed journal is responsible for deciding which articles submitted to the journal should be published, and, moreover, is accountable for everything published in the journal. In making these decisions, the editor may be guided by the policies of the journal’s editorial board as well as by legal requirements regarding libel, copyright infringement and plagiarism. The editor may confer with other editors or reviewers when making publication decisions. The editor should maintain the integrity of the academic record, preclude business needs from compromising intellectual and ethical standards, and always be willing to publish corrections, clarifications, retractions and apologies when needed.
The editor should evaluate manuscripts for intellectual content without regard to race, gender, sexual orientation, religious belief, ethnic origin, citizenship, or political philosophy of the author(s). The editor will not disclose any information about a manuscript under consideration to anyone other than the author(s), reviewers and potential reviewers, and in some instances the editorial board members, as appropriate.
The editor and any editorial staff must not disclose any information about a submitted manuscript to anyone other than the corresponding author, reviewers, potential reviewers, other editorial advisers, and the publisher, as appropriate.
Disclosure, conflicts of interest, and other issues
The editor will be guided by COPE’s Guidelines for Retracting Articles when considering retracting, issuing e_x_p_r+e_s_s_i_o_ns of concern about, and issuing corrections pertaining to articles that have been published in Scientia Agricultura Sinica.
Unpublished materials disclosed in a submitted manuscript must not be used in an editor’s own research without the express written consent of the author. Privileged information or ideas obtained through peer review must be kept confidential and not used for personal advantage.
The editor is committed to ensuring that advertising, reprint or other commercial revenue has no impact or influence on editorial decisions.
The editor should seek so ensure a fair and appropriate peer review process. Editors should recuse themselves (i.e. should ask a co-editor, associate editor or other member of the editorial board instead to review and consider) from considering manuscripts in which they have conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships or connections with any of the authors, companies, or (possibly) institutions connected to the papers. Editors should require all contributors to disclose relevant competing interests and publish corrections if competing interests are revealed after publication. If needed, other appropriate action should be taken, such as the publication of a retraction or e_x_p_r+e_s_s_i_o_n of concern.
Involvement and cooperation in investigations
Editors should guard the integrity of the published record by issuing corrections and retractions when needed and pursuing suspected or alleged research and publication misconduct. Editors should pursue reviewer and editorial misconduct. An editor should take reasonably responsive measures when ethical complaints have been presented concerning a submitted manuscript or published paper.
Contribution to editorial decisions
Peer review assists the editor in making editorial decisions and, through the editorial communication with the author, may also assist the author in improving the manuscript.
Any invited referee who feels unqualified to review the research reported in a manuscript or knows that its timely review will be impossible should immediately notify the editor so that alternative reviewers can be contacted.
Any manuscripts received for review must be treated as confidential documents. They must not be shown to or discussed with others except if authorized by the editor.
Standards of objectivity
Reviews should be conducted objectively. Personal criticism of the author is inacceptable. Referees should express their views clearly with appropriate supporting arguments.
Acknowledgement of sources
Reviewers should identify relevant published work that has not been cited by the authors. Any statement that an observation, derivation, or argument had been previously reported should be accompanied by the relevant citation. A reviewer should also call to the editor's attention any substantial similarity or overlap between the manuscript under consideration and any other published data of which they have personal knowledge.
Disclosure and conflict of interest
Privileged information or ideas obtained through peer review must be kept confidential and not used for personal advantage. Reviewers should not consider evaluating 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 submission.
Authorship of the manuscript
The manuscript must have been read and approved by all authors and that all authors agree to the submission of the manuscript to Scientia Agricultura Sinica. All authors should have made substantial contributions to all of the following: 1) conception and design of the study, acquisition of the data, or analysis and interpretation of the data; 2) drafting of the article or critical revision of the article for important intellectual content; and 3) final approval of the version to be submitted. When authorship is attributed to a group, all authors must meet the listed criteria and must be responsible for the quality, accuracy, and ethics of the work. All authors must participate in determining the order of authorship.
Originality and Plagiarism
The authors should ensure that they have written entirely original works, and if the authors have used the work and/or words of others that this has been appropriately cited or quoted.
Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication
An author should not in general publish manuscripts describing essentially the same research in more than one journal or primary publication. Parallel submission of the same manuscript to more than one journal constitutes unethical publishing behavior and is unacceptable.
Acknowledgement of sources
Proper acknowledgment of the work of others must always be given. Authors should also cite publications that have been influential in determining the nature of the reported work.
Hazards and human or animal subjects
If the work involves chemicals, procedures or equipment that have any unusual hazards inherent in their use, the authors must clearly identify these in the manuscript.
Disclosure and conflicts of interest
All authors should disclose in their manuscript any financial or other substantive conflict of interest that might be construed to influence the results or their interpretation in the manuscript. All sources of financial support for the project should be disclosed.
Fundamental errors in published works
When an author discovers a significant error or inaccuracy in his/her own published work, it is the author’s obligation to p_r_o_m_p_tly notify the journal’s editor or publisher and cooperate with them to either retract the paper or to publish an appropriate erratum.
In cases of alleged or proven scientific misconduct, fraudulent publication or plagiarism the publisher, in close collaboration with the editors, will take all appropriate measures to clarify the situation and to amend the article in question. This includes the p_r_o_m_p_t publication of an erratum or, in the most severe cases, the complete retraction of the affected work.