Statement of Ethics for LIS Editors Section 1

A Statement of Ethics for Editors of Library and Information Science Journals

July 2009
Revised September 2010

Ethics Statements for Editors, Authors, and Reviewers of LIS Journals

Ethics are principles of conduct or standards of behavior governing an individual or a profession. The integrity of LIS journals rests on the professionalism of its authors, referees, and editors. The statements here describe ethical behavior for participants in the editorial processes of recruitment, selection, and production of publishable articles. Editors should conform to high standards of integrity generally and must also act ethically in their relationships with their publishers, reviewers and editorial board members, and authors. In addition, some principles are articulated for ethical behavior by authors in submitting their work to editorial processes and for ethical behavior by referees in the review process.

Section 1: Expectations of Editors in Executing Their Editorial Functions

The following statements of ethics apply to the conduct of LIS journal editors.

1–1: Editor Integrity

1–2: Relations with Authors

Commentary: Editors should understand that unpublished authors often have no idea as to what is expected of them. Indeed, most have no understanding of the publication process at all. At the same time, many will feel pressure to publish due to the promotion and tenure requirements of their institution. The editor should communicate instructions for authors, information about the peer review process (if applicable), deadlines and author obligations, and options for managing copyright and authors right to the potential author.

1–3: Conflict of Interest

1–4: Copyright and Author Rights

Commentary: Many publishers have copyright and author rights statements on their Web sites, which is a practice editors should encourage. Editors can then easily direct potential authors to this information upon contact. It is desirable that such a statement includes a definition of terms, an explanation on the assignment of copyright, a description of publisher and author rights and responsibilities, and a statement of exclusions to policy requiring written permission from the publisher.

1–5: Instructions for Authors

1–6: Peer Review

Commentary: Peer review can occur by a variety of processes. A public description of the journal's peer review processes is ideal, and a complete explanation of peer review is best communicated as part of the Instructions for Authors. Editors may provide reviewers with style guides, example reviews, templates for conducting reviews, and other tools to inform the preparation of a review.

1–7: Commitments and Deadlines

Commentary: Often authors believe they cannot publish with a particular journal if the target deadline is not met, and, consequently, effective communication stops. The editor should inform the author that the topic is more important than an assigned timeline.

Section 2: Expectations of Authors in Their Participation in Editorial Processes

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