Ceylon Journal of Science policy on Publication Best Practices and Publication Ethics cover the three sections listed below, based on the responsibilities of Editor-in-Chief, Managing Editor and the Editorial Board, authors of the submitted manuscripts and the reviewers of manuscripts.
Ceylon Journal of Science uses a double-blind peer review option for manuscript reviewing. Authors remain anonymous to the referees throughout the reviewing process. The authors are responsible for anonymizing their manuscript accordingly;
The peer review process ensures the transparency and integrity of a research publication. Reviewers are therefore expected to be responsible both ethically and professionally.
Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) (2013).COPE Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers. March 2013, version 1. Available at: http://publicationethics.org/files/Ethical_guidelines_for_peer_reviewers_0.pdf
Editors, authors and reviewers are required to keep confidential all details of the editorial and peer review process on submitted manuscripts. The peer review process is confidential and conducted anonymously; identities of reviewers are not released. Reviewers must maintain confidentiality of manuscripts. If a reviewer wishes to seek advice from colleagues while assessing a manuscript, the reviewer must consult with the editor and should ensure that confidentiality is maintained and that the names of any such colleagues are provided to the journal with the final report. Regardless of whether a submitted manuscript is eventually published, correspondence with the journal, referees' reports and other confidential material must not be published, disclosed or otherwise publicised without prior written consent. Reviewers should be aware that it is the journal policy to keep their names confidential and that the Editorial Staff will do their utmost to ensure this confidentiality. We cannot, however, guarantee to maintain this confidentiality in the face of a successful legal action to disclose identity.
The journal reserves the right to contact funders, regulatory bodies, journals and the authors’ institutions in cases of suspected research or publishing misconduct.
Plagiarism is unacknowledged copying or an attempt to misattribute original authorship, whether of ideas, text or results. Plagiarism can include, "theft or misappropriation of intellectual property and the substantial unattributed textual copying of another's work". Plagiarism can be said to have clearly occurred when large chunks of text have been cut-and-pasted without appropriate and unambiguous attribution. Such manuscripts would not be considered for publication in Ceylon Journal of Science.
We believe that Ceylon Journal of Science has a responsibility to investigate any instances of plagiarism that it detects.
We achieve this by routinely using the Crossref Similarity Check powered by iThenticate on submitted manuscripts, and having clear guidelines in place for editors. Where a paper is suspected or discovered to be based on plagiarism, the editor must take prompt steps to investigate and to notify readers. The paper will be corrected or retracted depending on the severity of the case.
Aside from wholesale verbatim reuse of text, due care must be taken to ensure appropriate attribution and citation when paraphrasing and summarising the work of others. "Text recycling" or reuse of parts of text from an author's previous research publication is a form of self-plagiarism. Here too, due caution must be exercised. When reusing text, whether from the author's own publication or that of others, appropriate attribution and citation is necessary to avoid creating a misleading perception of unique contribution for the reader.
Duplicate publication occurs when an author reuses substantial parts of his or her own published work without providing the appropriate references. This can range from publishing an identical paper in multiple journals, to only adding a small amount of new data to a previously published paper.
When plagiarism becomes evident post-publication, the Editors may correct or retract the original publication depending on the degree of plagiarism, context within the published article and its impact on the overall integrity of the published study. Ceylon Journal of Science uses software tools to screen submitted manuscripts for text overlap.
We believe that Ceylon Journal of Science has a responsibility to investigate any instances of fraud or malpractice that it detects.
We achieve this by working closely with the Committee on Publication Ethics and having clear guidelines in place for editors. Where a paper is suspected or discovered to be based on fraudulent results or to contain images that have been inappropriately manipulated, the Managing Editor, under the instructions of the Editor-in-Chief and the Editorial Board will take prompt steps to investigate and to notify readers. The paper will be retracted if fraud is confirmed.
Ceylon Journal of Science recognizes the importance of post-publication commentary on published research as necessary to advancing scientific discourse. These can involve challenges, clarifications or, in some cases, replication of the published work.
Corrections are published for significant errors at the discretion of the editors. Readers who have identified such an error should send an email to the Managing Editor, clearly stating the publication reference, title, author and section of the article, and briefly explaining the error.
The Ceylon Journal of Science operates the following policy for making corrections to the print and online versions of their peer-reviewed content.
Publishable amendments that affect the publication record and/or the scientific accuracy of published information receive a DOI and are published in print and online in the journal. Four categories of amendments are relevant for peer-reviewed material. All four correction types listed below are bi-directionally linked to the original published paper.
Erratum or Publisher Correction. Notification of an important error made by the journal that affects the publication record or the scientific integrity of the paper, or the reputation of the authors or of the journal.
Corrigendum or Author Correction. A corrigendum refers to a notification of an important error made by the author(s) that affects the publication record or the scientific integrity of the paper, or the reputation of the authors or the journal. Authors can request the journal to publish a corrigendum at any time after acceptance by contacting the Editor-in-Chief of the journal, who will determine the impact of the error and decide on the appropriate course of action.
Retraction. Notification of invalid results that affect the reliability of a previously published article. The original article is marked as retracted but remains available to readers, and the retraction statement notifying readers of the invalidity of the published paper is bi-directionally linked to the original published paper.
Addendum. Notification of additional information about a paper. Addenda are published when the editors decide that the addendum is crucial to the reader's understanding of a significant part of the published contribution. Addenda include Editorial Expression of Concern, which is an editorial statement alerting our readership to serious concerns with the published paper. Editorial Expression of Concern are typically updated with another amendment once further information is available.
Editor's Note. An editor's note is a statement from editors notifying readers of issues related to the published paper. It is an online update made only to the HTML version of record of the published article. Editor's notes are typically updated with another amendment once further information is available.
In the interests of transparency and to enable readers to form their own judgments of potential bias, Ceylon Journal of Science require authors to declare any competing financial and/or non-financial interests in relation to the work described in their manuscripts. The corresponding author is responsible for submitting a competing interests' statement on behalf of all authors of the paper.
For the purposes of this policy, competing interests are defined as financial and non-financial interests that could directly undermine, or be perceived to undermine the objectivity, integrity and value of a publication, through a potential influence on the judgements and actions of authors with regard to objective data presentation, analysis, discussion and interpretation.
Funding: Research support (including salaries, equipment, supplies, and other expenses) by organizations that may gain or lose financially through this publication. A specific role for the funder in the conceptualization, design, data collection, analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript, should be disclosed.
Employment: Recent (while engaged in the research project), present or anticipated employment by any organization that may gain or lose financially through this publication.
Personal financial interests: Stocks or shares in companies that may gain or lose financially through publication; consultation fees or other forms of remuneration (including reimbursements for attending symposia) from organizations that may gain or lose financially; patents or patent applications (awarded or pending) filed by the authors or their institutions whose value may be affected by publication. For patents and patent applications, disclosure of the following information is requested: patent applicant (whether author or institution), name of inventor(s), application number, status of application, specific aspect of manuscript covered in patent application.
It is difficult to specify a threshold at which a financial interest becomes significant. Therefore, the journal offers as one possible practical alternative guideline: "Any undeclared competing financial interests that could embarrass you were they to become publicly known after your work was published.
Non-financial competing interests:
Non-financial competing interests can take different forms, including personal or professional relations with organizations and individuals. We would encourage authors and referees to declare any unpaid roles or relationships that might have a bearing on the publication process. Examples of non-financial competing interests include (but are not limited to):
• Unpaid membership in a government or non-governmental organization
• Unpaid membership in an advocacy or lobbying organization
• Unpaid advisory position in a commercial organization
• Writing or consulting for an educational company
• Acting as an expert witness
Authors must disclose and specify any competing interest during the manuscript submission process, via declarations in the manuscript submission system. The corresponding author is responsible for providing a declaration on behalf of all authors.
For peer reviewed contributions, authors' declarations are disclosed to peer reviewers in full. However, if authors have opted for double-blind peer review, they should provide their minimal statement (either "The authors declare the existence of a financial/non-financial competing interest" OR "The authors declare no competing interests") in the submission system and a complete statement of disclosure in their cover letter.
All authors regardless of peer review model are required to include a statement at the end of their published article to declare whether or not they have any competing interests. The published article indicates the authors' response using one of the following standard sentences:
• The authors declare the following competing interests:……..OR
• The authors declare no competing interests.
Those authors who are bound by confidentiality agreements can state: "The authors declare that they are bound by confidentiality agreements that prevent them from disclosing their competing interests in this work."
The Ceylon Journal of Science invites peer-reviewers to exclude themselves in cases where there is a significant conflict of interest, financial or otherwise. We ask peer-reviewers to inform the editors of any related interests, including financial interests as defined above, that might be perceived as relevant. Editors will consider these statements when weighing reviewers' recommendations.
The editorial staff of Ceylon Journal of Science is required to declare to their employer (University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka) any interests — financial or otherwise — that might influence, or be perceived to influence, their editorial practices. Failure to do so is a disciplinary offence
The strict publishing policy of Ceylon Journal of Science is that editorial independence, decisions and content will not be compromised by commercial or financial interests, or by any other specific arrangements with sponsors.
Managing Conflicts of Interest
Conflicts of authors are most often associated with the risk of bias in a manuscript. As an author, if you have any interest or association that could be seen to have influenced your decision-making process, you should ensure that it is declared at the time of submission. Whether or not you believe a conflict of interest exists, you will be asked to include a statement in your manuscript. If you believe no conflicts exist, you will be asked to confirm this in writing.
As a member of the journal’s Editorial Staff, you need to be well aware of the risk of conflicts when handling a manuscript. Firstly, you should assess your own potential conflicts. If you have recently coauthored with the author of the manuscript, you could be perceived to be influenced by your relationship. Similarly, if you have recently shared an affiliation or employment history with the author, it could also be seen to be inappropriate for you to handle their work. The journal expects the members of the Editorial Board to declare any conflicts with authors when they handle a manuscript. If you believe a conflict exists, you should refuse to handle the manuscript.
The Editorial Board Members must not be involved in decisions about papers which they have authored/co-authored, or have been written by their family members or colleagues or which relate to products or services in which the Editorial Board member has an interest.
By agreeing to peer review a manuscript you are providing essential neutral, unbiased assessment. As such, you should ensure that you have no conflicts of interest that could be seen to prevent you from acting in an impartial manner. After papers are assigned, individual reviewers are required to inform the managing editor of any conflicts of interests.
PROCESS FOR COMPLAINTS BY AUTHORS
The authors have the right to complain and ask explanation if they perceive anymisconduct in any applicable policies and ethical guidelines. The authors can raise their complaints by submitting a letter to
All the complaints regarding delinquencies in the work processes are investigated according to the prevailing publication ethics practices.
Following categories of complaints can be submitted
An author or any other scholar may submit their complaints about any issues related to:
Once a complaint is received, at first an acknowledgement is sent by the Managing Editor within three working days to the complainant with assurance that appropriate action will be taken on complaint.
The investigation process is initiated by the Journal handling team according to the directions of the Editor-In-Chief/Editorial Board depending on the nature of the complaint. After the investigation is over, a meeting is held with complete report on the complaint. The decision is taken in and the same is forwarded to the concerned author/scholar through his/her submitted email ID.
We consider complaints as an opportunity to enhance our existing Manuscript Processing System. All the received complaints are dealt in polite, impartial and timely manner.
Ceylon Journal of Science is available for LOCKSS harvesting through SLJOL platform (https://cjs.sljol.info/, to create a distributed archiving system among participating libraries and permits those libraries to create permanent archives of the journal for purposes of preservation and restoration.
We believe that Ceylon Journal of Science should support community best practices in the sharing and archiving of research data.
We achieve this by facilitating compliance with research funder and institution requirements to share data.
Acceptance of a manuscript to be published in Ceylon Journal of Science implies that materials described in the manuscript, including all relevant raw data, may be freely available to any researcher wishing to use them for non-commercial purposes, without breaching participant confidentiality.
The journal strongly encourages that all datasets on which the conclusions of the paper rely to be available to readers, whenever possible. We encourage authors to ensure that their datasets are either deposited in publicly available repositories (where available and appropriate) or presented in the main manuscript or additional supporting files whenever possible.
Data availability statement
A data availability statement provides a statement about where data supporting the results reported in a published article can be found - including, where applicable, hyperlinks to publicly archived datasets analysed or generated during the study.
Data availability statements can take one of the following forms:
The Ceylon Journal of Science is indexed in the following databases:
Sri Lanka Journals Online (SLJOL)
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