Editorial Policies |
1. EDITORIAL EVALUATION
This is the first stage evaluation, in which the paper proposed for evaluation is assessed from the technical and administrative points of view. The evaluation is made by the editor in charge with the issue following to identify whether the paper is related to the specificity of the journal and if it addresses subjects that are in direct connection with the current issue's topic. The editor in charge will also assess if the author complies with the editorial requirements, such as the citation system, respecting the journal's technical parameters from the template available online, or the structure of the article.
Only after the technical requirements are fulfilled by the author will the paper be the subject of the peer review process and its scientific quality evaluated. After texts are analyzed to see if they match the disciplinary and thematic orientation of the publication's editorial quality standards of LUMEN publications, manuscripts are sent to two reviewers selected from the Board of Reviewers of LUMEN Publishing House, whose scientific activity and expertise corresponds most with the proposed manuscript.
2. SCIENTIFIC EVALUATION
After texts are analyzed from the scientific point of view, reviewers communicate their decision and the observations/requirements (if any) as a condition of publication. The editor in charge transmits the reviewers’ decision to the author and, if the reviewers agreed on the acceptance for publication but recommend changes of the text, it is sent back to the author to make changes. Once the requested changes are made, the text returns to the two reviewers of LUMEN Publishing House Committee to check the final version of the text and transmit their decision.
Reviewers should be experts in their fields and should be able to provide an objective assessment of the manuscript they evaluate. The reviewers must have a rich expertise and experience to be chosen as a referent, certified through publications, conferences, grants, etc.
LUMEN policy is that reviewers should not be assigned to a paper if:
- the reviewer is based at the same institution as any of the co-authors
- the reviewer is based at the funding body of the paper
- the reviewer has provided a personal (e.g. Gmail/Yahoo/Hotmail) email account and an institutional email account cannot be found after performing a basic Google search (name, department and institution).
The scientific evaluation is completed in at least one of the following ways:
DOUBLE BLIND PEER REVIEW
The blind peer review process consists of assigning a blind manuscript (with no identification information of the author/s) to a reviewer whose identity is not known to the author whose paper is subject to evaluation, nor will be known by the author after the evaluation is completed. The correspondence between the reviewers/s and the author/s will be intermediated by the publisher LUMEN Publishing House.
The results of evaluation can be of the following types: acceptance, acceptance with modifications or rejected. If a reviewer rejects the manuscript but another one accepts it, the manuscript is assessed by a third reviewer, or the editor responsible for the issue, who will accomplish the advocate function and take the final decision. If it is accepted with modifications, corrections will be asked for from the author.
REVIEWERS PROPOSED BY AUTHORS
In specific situation, in very particular cases, where the article is of niche, the authors are invited to propose their own specialty referrers when they submit their paper for publication. They cannot be coordinators of doctoral theses, or members from the thesis’s evaluation committee etc.
The opinions of the authors proposed reviewers will be considered, in the event of a disagreement between the two peer reviewers proposed by LUMEN Publishing, or where peer reviewers accept papers with a reserve. Also, this method is used as an additional editorial peer review, in the case of editorial programmes that request it. It is not mandatory for the proposed referees to be considered by the editor of the journal or of the editor for a specific issue.
3. ETHICAL EVALUATION AND IDENTIFICATION OF, AND DEALING WITH ALLEGATIONS OF RESEARCH MISCONDUCT
LUMEN is member of PILA and some journals are individual member of COPE. LUMEN Publishing fully adheres to the ethical standards of Committee of Publication Ethics (COPE), even for the journals that are not yet members.
Ethical evaluation follows two directions, namely Editorial Ethics and Research Ethics.
Regarding Editorial Ethics, these are analyzed suspicions of plagiarism and the improper award of authorship (including authors who contributed to the text or research and the exclusion of authors who have contributed). They also track potential conflicts of interest that occurred after publication by LUMEN, the rights to reproduce images, text or republication rights fragments where appropriate. The aim is to avoid the request for double financing when the manuscript published through public financing. Each journal where ethical misconduct was identified and submitted for an analysis keeps a record for such issues, and a selection of cases which can be useful for better understanding the ethical and editorial decision to be made by reviewers, authors, editors, were listed on a dedicated page.
The second direction – Research ethics – aims of evaluation for respecting the ethical rules of scientific research where appropriate: the rules of data confidentiality; obtaining the agreement for participation in research from research population; in the protection of the interests of natural or legal persons, in order not to violate any image or other rights of nature provided by law.
In case of any suspicion of research misconduct a peer process is initiated by LUMEN for performing inquiries and investigations of possible research misconduct; This process goes deeply into the specific questioned research and the research record, in order to verify that the research respects the principle of integrity, confidentiality, fairness and respect for human dignity - especially where the research involves human subjects.
4. EDITORIAL REVIEW of TRANSLATIONS
Editorial reviewers target the quality of translations in language of publication of the journal. An evaluation is undertaken by a specialist, a connoisseur of the language in which the work appeared or a native speaker and the quality of translation is checked. LUMEN Publishing is providing in depth copy editing and language proofreading, but we strongly recommend to all authors that are not native speakers of the language of publication to consult specialists in such matter.
LUMEN Publishing House scans each article accepted for publication with the Crossref Similarity Check - iThenticate software only after the article is considered final, so as not to make any changes that may increase the likelihood to be above the accepted limit, which is at most 5% to 10% similarity (due to the specific of each article). LUMEN expresses zero tolerance to plagiarism, but we accepted at most 10% similarity with other sources, which are due to specific denominations, internationally accepted nomenclatures, and/or expression that are common knowledge in the field. The articles that were proven to have plagiarism elements will automatically be rejected from publication.
If the article exceeds the accepted quota of similarity, but it is not proved to be plagiarised, the editor could send the article back to the authors, to motivate the identified similarities, and eventually to correct possible negligence.
If suspicions of plagiarism occur after the initial check or even after the publication of the paper – that implies the paper retraction, either partially, or entirely - the full refund of the open-access fee for is not possible.
Authorship & contributorship
LUMEN adheres to the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) recommendations related to authorship. ICMJE recommends that authorship be based on the following 4 criteria:
- 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 (ICMJE: Defining the Role of Authors and Contributors, 2022).
These authorship criteria are intended to reserve the status of authorship for those who deserve credit and can take responsibility for the work. In the group of authors, an author should be able to identify which co-authors are responsible for specific other parts of the work, in order to being accountable for the parts of the work he/she has done. Also, authors should have confidence in the integrity of the contributions of their co-authors.
Principal authorship, authorship order, and other publication credits should be based on the relative scientific or professional contributions of the individuals involved, regardless of their status. A student is usually listed as principal author on any multiple-authored publication that substantially derives from the student’s dissertation or thesis.
All authors must agree on publication and be able to support research by answering questions about this research. Contributors who do not meet the criteria to be authors should be included in the acknowledgments.
As regards the authors' order, this should respect the volume of work and the importance of the scientific contribution of each author. Presenting in alphabetical order, mentioning the equal contribution of each author in acknowledgment, draws attention to the equal quoting of each author.
Lead Author (First Author)
In the case of publications with multiple authors, one author should assume the role of lead author. Even in different publications, the lead author is different to the first author; in all LUMEN Publishing Journals, the lead author is considered to be the first author and some case corresponding author. We admit exceptions, based on an all-authors’ request, for the corresponding author to be mentioned as being different to the lead author, with special mention, and is placed as the last author. Authors should decide to be equally responsible for the paper; in this case, they are mentioned in alphabetical order, with the acknowledgement that all authors have an equal contribution to the article.
The lead author assumes full responsibility for the order of the authorship and assume the responsibility to consult with the other authors before submitting the manuscript for evaluation.
If, following the peer review process, changes occur in the authorship, it is necessary to be agreed by all authors and justified from the perspective of the contribution of the newly introduced author / authors, respectively the elimination of the contribution of the one withdrawn from the author. An author cannot be removed if his contribution, even an idea, is maintained in the article. A special ethical evaluation is organized which may lead to the rejection of the article, regardless of the stage of the editorial evaluation. No change of authorship can be made after the final acceptance of the article.
All co-authors of a publication are responsible for:
- Authorship: By providing consent to authorship to the lead author, co-authors acknowledge that they meet the authorship criteria set above. A co-author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take responsibility for appropriate portions of the content.
- Approval: By providing consent to authorship to the lead author, co-authors are acknowledging that they have reviewed and approved the manuscript.
- Integrity: Each co-author is responsible for the content of all appropriate portions of the manuscript, including the integrity of any applicable research.
- An individual retains the right to refuse co-authorship of a manuscript if s/he does not satisfy the criteria for authorship.
Where contributors meet fewer than all 4 of the above criteria for authorship, those should not be listed as authors, but they should be acknowledged.
In accordance with ICMJE guidelines, here are some examples of activities that alone (without other contributions) do not qualify a contributor for authorship:
- acquisition of funding;
- general supervision of a research group or general administrative support;
- and writing assistance, technical editing, language editing, and proofreading.
In addition, those whose contributions do not justify authorship may be acknowledged individually or together as a group under a single heading (e.g. "Participating Investigators"), and their contributions should be specified (e.g., "served as scientific advisors," "critically reviewed the study proposal," "collected data," "provided and cared for study participants," "participated in writing or technical editing of the manuscript") (ICMJE: Defining the Role of Authors and Contributors, 2022).
All contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship should be listed in an Acknowledgements section. Examples of those who might be acknowledged are included above.
When submitting the manuscript, author must supply any personal acknowledgements separately to the main text to facilitate anonymous peer review.
Third party submissions - Where an individual who is not listed as an author submits a manuscript on behalf of the author(s), a statement must be included in the Acknowledgements section of the manuscript and in the accompanying cover letter. The statements must:
- Disclose this type of editorial assistance – including the individual’s name, company and level of input
- Identify any entities that paid for this assistance
- Confirm that the listed authors have authorized the submission of their manuscript via third party and approved any statements or declarations, e.g. conflicting interests, funding, etc.
Based on previous editorial experience, where appropriate, LUMEN reserves the right to deny consideration to manuscripts submitted by a third party rather than by the authors themselves.
Because acknowledgment may imply endorsement by acknowledged individuals of a study’s data and conclusions, LUMEN reserves the right to require that the corresponding author obtain written permission to be acknowledged from all acknowledged individuals.
All research articles should have a funding acknowledgement statement included in the manuscript in the form of a sentence under a separate heading entitled ‘Funding’ directly after your Acknowledgements and Declaration of Conflicting Interests, if applicable, and prior to any Notes and References. The funding agency should be written out in full, followed by the grant number in square brackets, see following example (the text in bold is mandatory, unless specified otherwise by the journal):
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This work was supported by the Y Institute [grant number xxx].
Multiple grant numbers should be separated by comma and space. Where the research was supported by more than one agency, the different agencies should be separated by semi-colon, with “and” before the final funder. Thus:
This work was supported by the X [grant numbers xxxx, yyyy]; the Y [grant number zzzz]; and the Z [grant number aaaa].
There are cases where research is not funded by a specific project grant, but rather from other resources available to a university, college or other research institution. Where no specific funding has been provided for the research, we ask that corresponding authors use the following sentence:
The author(s) received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.
Please mention this information under a separate heading entitled “Funding” directly after any Acknowledgements and Declaration of Conflicting Interests (if applicable), and prior to any Notes and References.
When submitting the manuscript, author must supply any information about funding agencies separately to the main text to facilitate anonymous peer review.
Conflict of Interest, Human and Animal rights, and Informed Consent
Declaration of conflicting interests
Though this policy our journal requires a conflict-of-interest statement or conflict of interest disclosure from any submitting or publishing author.
In accordance with the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) statement, “conflicts of interest comprise those which may not be fully apparent and which may influence the judgment of author, reviewers, and editors. They have been described as those which, when revealed later, would make a reasonable reader feel misled or deceived. They may be personal, commercial, political, academic or financial. “Financial” interests may include employment, research funding, stock or share ownership, payment for lectures or travel, consultancies and company support for staff” (COPE, 2017)
As many scholars, researchers and professionals may have potential conflicts of interest, that could have an effect on their research, LUMEN journals require a formal declaration of conflicting interests enabling a statement to be carried within the paginated published article.
Manuscripts will be evaluated fairly and will not necessarily be rejected when any competing interests are declared.
Here are some examples of conflicts of interest:
Having received fees for consulting.
Having received research funding.
Having been employed by a related company.
Holding stocks or shares in a company which might be affected by the publication of your paper.
Having received funds reimbursing you for attending a related symposium, or talk. (Note: it is not expected that details of financial arrangements be disclosed when a competing interest is declared.)
Any other interests which the reasonable reader might feel has affected the research author may also wish to declare them.
Author obligations regarding conflicting interests
At the earliest stage possible, authors should disclose any conflicts of interest that might be construed to influence the results or their interpretation in the manuscript. Prior submission, author will be asked to certify that: 1) All forms of financial support, including pharmaceutical company support (if the case), are acknowledged in the author’s contribution; 2) Any commercial or financial involvements that might present an appearance of a conflict of interest related to the contribution are disclosed in a covering letter accompanying the contribution and all such potential conflicts of interest will be discussed with the Editor as to whether disclosure of this information with the published contribution is to be made in the journal; 3). That the author/s have not signed an agreement with any sponsor of the research reported in the contribution that prevents them from publishing both positive and negative results or that forbids you from publishing this research without the prior approval of the sponsor; 4) That they have checked the manuscript submission guidelines to see whether the journal requires a Declaration of Conflicting Interests and have complied with the requirements specified where such a policy exists.
That you have checked the manuscript submission guidelines to see whether the journal requires a Declaration of Conflicting Interests and have complied with the requirements specified where such a policy exists.
- How do I make a declaration?
If you are submitting to or publishing your manuscript in a journal which requires you to make a Declaration of Conflicting Interests, please include such a declaration at the end of your manuscript after any Acknowledgements and prior to the Funding Acknowledgement, Notes (if relevant) and References, under the heading 'Declaration of Conflicting Interest'. If no conflict exists, please state that 'The Author(s) declare(s) that there is no conflict of interest'.
Human and Animal Rights
All research must have been carried out within an appropriate ethical framework. If there is suspicion that work has not taken place within an appropriate ethical framework, Editors will follow may reject the manuscript, and/or contact the author(s)’ ethics committee. On extraordinary cases, if the Editor has serious concerns about the ethics of a study, the manuscript may be rejected on ethical grounds, even if approval from an ethics committee has been obtained.
Research involving human subjects, human material, or human data, must have been performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki and must have been approved by an appropriate ethics committee.
The submitted study has to be supported by the ethics/bioethics committee approval, or at least IRB (Institutional Research Board).
Authors reporting the use of a new procedure or tool in a clinical setting, for example as a technical advance or case report, must give a clear justification in the manuscript for why the new procedure or tool was deemed more appropriate than usual clinical practice to meet the patient’s clinical need (such justification is not required if the new procedure is already approved for clinical use at the authors’ institution). Authors will be expected to have obtained ethics committee approval and informed patient consent for any experimental use of a novel procedure or tool where a clear clinical advantage based on clinical need was not apparent before treatment.
Images related to individual participants are not allowed when allowing the individual identification.
Experimental research on vertebrates or any regulated invertebrates must comply with institutional, national, or international guidelines, and where available should have been approved by an appropriate ethics committee.
A statement detailing compliance with relevant guidelines (e.g. the revised Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986 in the UK and Directive 2010/63/EU in Europe) and/or ethical approval (including the name of the ethics committee and the reference number where appropriate) must be included in the manuscript. If a study has been granted an exemption from requiring ethics approval, this should also be detailed in the manuscript (including the name of the ethics committee that granted the exemption and the reasons for the exemption). The Editor will take into the account the animal welfare issues and reserves the right to reject a manuscript, especially if the research involves protocols that are inconsistent with commonly accepted norms of animal research. In rare cases, Editors may contact the ethics committee for further information.
Field studies and other non-experimental research on animals must comply with institutional, national, or international guidelines, and where available should have been approved by an appropriate ethics committee. A statement detailing compliance with relevant guidelines and/or appropriate permissions or licenses must be included in the manuscript.
Editors' Declarations and disclosure
Journal editors should behave with responsibility and manifest sensitivity to the issue of actual or perceived conflicts of interest; They must be especially rigorous in acting to avoid them.
No member of the editorial board of the LUMEN journal shall derive any personal gain, financial or materially, directly or indirectly, by reason of his/her participation on the board.
Each member of the board, if they participate in editorial decisions, at the time of their acceptance of a position on the editorial board, and annually thereafter (at the start of each term) shall sign a conflict of interest statement to indicate they have no perceived or real conflicts of interest OR provide a full disclosure of any personal conflict of interest which he/she may have.
In the event that any conflict of interest arises during their tenure as a board member the conflict must be disclosed immediately in full, in writing. Having declared the conflict of interest in writing the individual shall, on each and every occasion:
• withdraw from all participation in any discussions or voting related to the specific contract(s);
• withdraw themselves physically from any related discussions;
• stoping any potential action of influencing others regarding any associated decision making, or discussion.
Editors for the LUMEN are responsible for disclosing to the editor-in-chief any personal or financial relationship that may bias their work during the peer review process and recuse themselves when such conflicts are of sufficient. Editors should inform the editor-in-chief at the time of manuscript invitation of any potential conflict of interest with a potential author or reviewer. If an editor becomes aware of an apparent conflict of interest, he/she will inform the editor-in-chief.
Editors and manners of managing specific conflicts
Submission by an editor
A manuscript submitted by a LUMEN editor or board member will be handled by one of the other associate editors who are not at the same institution as the submitting author. The chosen associate editor will select referees and make all decisions on the paper. Moreover, the journal's review system OJS (Open Journal System), does not allow a conflicted editor to be assigned to work to relevant information concerning their manuscript. If the case, a conflicted editor will be blocked from participating in any discussion among the editors pertaining to such manuscripts.
Submission by author from same institution as one of the editors
A manuscript submitted by an author who is at the same institution as one of the
editors will be handled by another editors who is not at that specific institution. This procedure includes continuing employment or negotiations for prospective employment at the institution of the author(s), which could affect or be affected by the peer review outcome. Another editor will select reviewers and make all decisions on the paper.
Potential conflict of interest for reviewers
The LUMEN publishing attempts to prevent conflicts of interest by not inviting reviewers from the same institutions as authors. However, previous relationships or places of employment may not be obvious, therefore the invitation to
potential reviewers, the editors will ask that they decline to review if they know, or guess the identity of the author.
You may find the following useful resources to refer to for more information on Conflict-of-Interest policies, existing codes of practices and more general good practice in relation to journal publication ethics:
- View the Guidelines published on good publication and the Code of Conduct by the Committee of Publication Ethics (COPE).
- View the guidelines published by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE).