AboutScience is committed to a transparent, fair and objective peer review process with the aim of publishing unbiased and ethically selected articles. We expect our authors, reviewers and editors to follow ethical guidelines to maintain an accurate and transparent academic record.
Authors retain copyright of their work and all articles are published under the Creative Commons NonCommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0).
This document outlines the most relevant aspects of ethical issues but are not exhaustive. AboutOpen follows COPE’s guidelines for handling potentially unethical behaviour by authors, reviewers or editors andwe encourage authors, reviewers and editors to refer to the COPE website and guidelines for further guidance.
In case of concerns raised by readers we will investigate using procedures recommended by COPE and wherever possible they will be resolved by the editorial board. We expect our authors to respond responsibly to any allegation made against them.
Research integrity is a broad term which identifies different types of unethical behaviour during the research and publication process. In AboutOpen authors are required to warrant, during the submission process, that their study and the submitted article meets all integrity criteria which are outlined below.
A breach in research integrity may result in the article being rejected.
Research misconduct is defined as fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism in proposing, performing, or reviewing research, or in reporting research results. Inappropriate image manipulation is a recognized form of data fabrication or falsification.
Theft or misappropriation of intellectual property and/or the substantial unattributed textual copying of another's work constitutes plagiarism. This journal systematically employs iThenticate, a plagiarism detection and prevention software designed to ensure the originality of written work before publication. Manuscripts proved to include plagiarized content will be rejected. Authors must avoid duplicate publication, which is reproducing verbatim content from their other publications.
Authorship should be based on the following four criteria and all listed authors must meet all criteria:
We encourage all authors to supply their ORCiD. The ORCiD must be entered into the manuscript tracking system during submission.
What is an ORCiD? An ORCiD is a digital identifier that distinguishes you from other researchers, even if you have a common name that others might share. The ORCiD allows you to track and get credit for all of your published research. Signing up for ORCiD is free and simple. Register online at https://orcid.org in advance of submission, or follow the prompts during submission.
Authors may also include in a statement individual contributions following the CredIt taxonomy (https://casrai.org/credit/).
Data availability. Authors must ensure that original research data remain available after publication through appropriate archiving. We recommend that a statement about where data supporting the results reported in a published article can be found, including, where applicable, unique identifiers linking to publicly archived datasets analyzed or generated during the study.
Competing interests. Authors, Reviewers and Editors are required to disclose any conflict of interest (that is financial or personal relationships or affiliations that could influence their work) and sources of financial and material support received.
When human subjects are involved in a study it is suggested that journals require authors to provide a statement identifying the ethics committee that approved the study (I.R.B. approval), and that the study conforms to recognized standards (e.g. Declaration of Helsinki; European Medicines Agency Guidelines for Good Clinical Practice). These standards encourage authors to conduct studies in a way that ensures adequate steps have been taken to minimize risks to participants and to protect their confidentiality.
Whenever a study or case report includes data or images which could identify a patient, explicit written consent for publication (which is different from consent to take part in research) must be obtained and included in the submitted article. In case of minors, the consent must be signed by a parent or guardian.
When organ transplantation is described in the article author should state that they adhered to the Declaration of Instanbul, which specifically addresses delicate subjects relative to organ supply.
When animals are involved in research, authors should ensure that these were conducted according to animal research reporting standards:
Research reporting guidelines are intended to guide authors to provide enough information for editors, peer reviewers and readers to understand how the research was performed and to judge whether the findings are likely to be reliable.
The EQUATOR Network provides detailed study-specific guidelines. The key guidelines are:
The term publication ethics identifies the ethical approach applied to the entire submission, peer review, publication and post publication process required to handle a journal ethically and transparently, including publishing corrections and retractions if required.
The Publisher should:
For appeals against an editorial decision, please send an email to the Editor in Chief (Giulio Zuanetti, firstname.lastname@example.org), indicating clearly your concerns, documenting as appropriate your case.
Corrections and Retractions
Errata may be required in case an article has been published with major errors: it must cite the original article and report relevant amendments.
A retraction may be required for major faults in the manuscript: this can be authored either by the authors of the original article or by the Editor and should clearly report the reasons for article retraction, as well as including a complete citation to the original, retracted article. Retractions must be published in a numbered page of the journal to ensure appropriate indexing.
Letters to the Editor and letters in reply are intended to present opinions or comments on articles published in the Journal. Refer to content type for detailed specifications.
Disciplines and Editors
Diabetology: A. Nicolucci
Digital Health: G. Zuanetti
Engagement: G. Graffigna
Epidemiology & Public Health: P. Lopalco
Gynecology: S. Luisi
HTA & Market Access: R. Ravasio
Intensive care: G. Bellani
Nephrology: A. Bellasi
Oncology: R. Fruscio
Ophthalmology: A.M. Minnella
Rheumatology: S. Bellando Randone
Urology: G. Pappagallo
We log anonymous usage statistics. Please read the privacy information for details.