Ethics Policy

Research and publication ethics

All submitted manuscripts must conform to AJD’s policies as described. AJD closely follows the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) principles of publication ethics laid out in its core practice documents.

AJD editorial board is independent, and the publisher will not interfere with editorial decision-making. Where ethical or legal concerns are present, a decision may be changed, and acceptance of a manuscript may be rescinded should an ethical issue or conflict with policies be identified. Manuscripts that do not conform to AJD ethical policies may be withdrawn from submission by the publisher.

Publication ethics statement

The editors of this journal enforce a rigorous peer-review process together with strict ethical policies and standards to ensure to add of high-quality scientific works to the field of scholarly publication. Authors wishing to publish their papers in AJD must follow the following rules:

  • 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 should 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.
  • The authors should publicly deposit raw data before submission of their manuscript. Authors must have at least the raw data readily available for presentation to the journal’s referees and editors if requested. Authors need to ensure appropriate measures are taken so that raw data is retained in full for a reasonable time after publication.
  • Simultaneous submission of manuscripts to more than one journal is not tolerated.
  • The journal accepts exact translations of previously published work. All submissions of translations must conform to our policies on translations.
  • If errors and inaccuracies are founded by the authors after publication of their paper, they need to be promptly communicated to the editors of this journal so that appropriate actions can be taken.
  • Your manuscript should not contain any information that has already been published. If you include already published figures or images, please obtain the necessary permission from the copyright holder to publish under the CC-bY license.
  • Plagiarism, data fabrication, and image manipulation are not tolerated.

Citation policy
  • Authors should ensure that where the material is taken from other sources, the source is clearly cited and where appropriate permission is obtained.
  • Authors should not engage in an excessive self-citation of their own work.
  • Authors should not copy references from other publications if they have not read the cited work.
  • Authors should not preferentially cite their own or their friends’, peers’, or institution’s publications.
  • Authors should not cite advertisements or advertorial material.

AJD follows the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors guidelines which state that to qualify for authorship of a manuscript, the following criteria should be met:
  • Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work, or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; AND
  • Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; AND
  • Final approval of the version to be published; AND
  • 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. The International Council of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) gives more detailed guidance on authorship.

Any change to the author list should be approved by all authors, including any who have been removed from the list. The corresponding author should act as a point of contact between the editor and the other authors, keep co-authors informed, and involve them in major decisions about the publication. We reserve the right to request confirmation that all authors meet the authorship conditions.

Consortium/group authorship
If the consortium or group retains authorship, the consortium or group shall be listed as an author. Individual consortium/group author members listed in the author byline must qualify for authorship according to ICMJE guidelines.

Deceased authors
If a manuscript is submitted with a deceased author included in the authorship or if an author passes away during peer review, the corresponding author, or co-authors, should inform the editorial office. If the deceased author was a corresponding author, the authorship group should nominate a co-author for this role. The corresponding author should confirm the contribution of the deceased author and any potential conflicts of interest. Upon publication, a note will be added under the author list.

Editorial independence
AJD strictly believes in editorial independence and does not interfere with editorial decisions. All articles published in AJD are peer-reviewed and assessed by our independent editorial board. The AJD group staff is not involved in decisions to accept manuscripts. The decision to publish an article solely depends on

  • The suitability of selected reviewers,
  • Adequacy of reviewer comments and the author’s response,
  • Overall scientific quality of the paper.
Editors and editorial staff as authors
The editorial staff or editors will not be involved in processing their own academic work. Submissions authored by editorial staff/editors will be assigned to at least two independent outside reviewers. Decisions will be made by other Editorial Board Members who do not have a conflict of interest with the author. Journal staff are not involved in processing their own work submitted to the AJD journal.

Conflicts of interests
As per the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, “Authors should avoid entering into agreements with study sponsors, both for-profit and non-profit, that interfere with author’s access to all of the study’s data or that interfere with their ability to analyze and interpret the data and to prepare and publish manuscripts independently when and where they choose.”

All authors must disclose all relationships or interests that could inappropriately influence or bias their work. Financial interests (such as membership, employment, consultancies, stocks/shares ownership, honoraria, grants, or other funding, paid expert testimonies, and patent licensing arrangements) and non-financial interests (such as personal or professional relationships, affiliations, personal beliefs, etc.) are a few examples which should be disclosed.

Authors can disclose potential conflicts of interest by submitting the AJD disclosure form. The corresponding author must include a summary statement in the manuscript in a separate section, “Conflict of Interest,” placed just before the reference list. The statement should reflect all the collected potential conflict of interest disclosures in the form. Examples of disclosure:
Conflicts of interest: Author X has received research grants from Company ABC. Author Y has received a speaker honorarium from Company BCD and owns stocks in Company F. Author Z has been involved as a consultant, and expert witness in Company G. Author T is the investor of patent H.

If no conflicts exist, the authors should state:

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Article Retraction

Infringement of professional ethics codes, such as multiple submissions, bogus claims of authorship, plagiarism, fraudulent use of data, or the like. Occasionally a retraction will be used to correct errors in submission or publication. Standards for dealing with retractions have been developed by a number of library and scholarly bodies, and this best practice is adopted for article retraction by the publisher:
  • A retraction note titled “Retraction: [article title]” signed by the authors and/or the editor is published in the paginated part of a subsequent issue of the journal and listed in the contents list.
  • In the electronic version, a link is made to the original article.
  • The online article is preceded by a screen containing the retraction note. It is to this screen that the link resolves; the reader can then proceed to the article itself.
  • The original article is retained unchanged save for a watermark on the .pdf indicating on each page that it is retracted.
  • The HTML version of the documents is removed.
Article removal: Legal limitations
In an extremely limited number of cases, removing an article from the online database may be necessary. This will only occur where the article is clearly defamatory or infringes others’ legal rights, or where the article is, or we have good reason to expect it will be, the subject of a court order, or where the article, if acted upon, might pose a serious health risk. In these circumstances, while the metadata (Title and Authors) will be retained, the text will be replaced with a screen indicating the article has been removed for legal reasons.

Article replacement
In cases where the article, if acted upon, might pose a serious health risk, the original article’s authors may wish to retract the flawed original and replace it with a corrected version. In these circumstances, the procedures for retraction will be followed with the difference that the database retraction notice will publish a link to the corrected re-published article and a history of the document. Erratum and corrigendum
In the instance where errors are introduced to the article by the publisher, an erratum will be published to the original article. All publisher-introduced changes are highlighted to the author at the proof stage, and any errors are ideally identified by the author and corrected by the publisher before the final publication.

Should the author wish to publish a change to their article that at any time after acceptance, a corrigendum will be published. Authors should contact the editor-in-chief of the journal, who will determine the impact of the change and decide on the appropriate course of action.