GEORGIAN TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY
COLLECTION OF SCIENTIFIC WORKS
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    Guidelines for Ethical Conduct

    This document represents guidelines of ethical behavior for persons engaged in publishing activities, in particular for editors, authors and reviewers of manuscripts. These principles have been developed by the editors of the journal and are regularly reviewed and, if necessary, revised.

    The Ethical Guidelines have been published with the understanding that maintaining high ethical standards is so important to the entire institution that the definition of these standards should be of concern to each interested person.

    Guidelines for Ethical Conduct in Publishing Activities

    Introduction

    Scientific articles of different fields are published in the Collection of Scientific Works of the Georgian Technical University. The readers of the journal are periodically informed about the results of scientific and engineering researches. Journal editors developed strict guidelines to select and accept papers for publication in the journal.

    Each member of publishing industry should be aware of a Code of Conduct that sets out the desired rules of conduct and responsibilities to each other and to society. This code was created primarily for the benefit of the public, to protect the interests of the publishing industry and to prevent such actions that can only serve the narrow self-interest of certain individuals. One of the factors contributing to the development of science is the exchange of knowledge between people, even if the exchange may lead to personal losses.

    Considering the above, the editors of the journal present a number of guidelines of ethical behavior for persons engaged in publishing activities, in particular, for editors, authors and reviewers of manuscripts. The reason for developing ethical guidelines is not really the alarming state of norms of ethical behavior. The present ethical norms were developed with the idea that the observance of high ethical standards is so important for the entire scientific institution that the definition of these standards should be taken into account by all interested parties.

    In our opinion, most of the existing ethical guidelines are well understood by experienced researchers, but they are also useful for novice researchers. However, it should be noted that the present ethical instructions can be helpful even for scientists with long experience, who are given the opportunity to get acquainted with such important issues in scientific practice.

    Guidelines

    Ethical Obligations of Editors of Scientific journals

    The editor is obliged to impartially and fairly review all manuscripts submitted for publication, regardless of the author/authors' race, religion, nationality, gender, seniority and membership of the organization. However, the editor may consider the relationship of the manuscript under review to previous or contemporaneous submissions by the same author/authors.

    The editor is obliged to review manuscripts submitted for publication in a short period of time.

    The editor is solely responsible for accepting and rejecting the manuscript for publication. To fulfill this duty conscientiously and meticulously, the editor traditionally turns to impartial reviewers with relevant experience to advise on the quality and credibility of the manuscripts submitted for publication. However, a manuscript may be rejected without review if, in the opinion of the editors, it is inappropriate for the journal. The reason for rejecting a manuscript can be the inappropriate (too large) size of the manuscript for the space allocated to it in the journal, or its irrelevance; Also, the following reasons: the manuscript is not of wide enough interest, lacks depth of content, is not written in an acceptable language, etc.

    The editor and the members of the editorial board are obliged not to disclose information about the manuscript in question to other persons, except for those persons from whom they receive professional advice regarding the given manuscript (however, the editor, who petitions or has already negotiated with the author regarding the submission of the manuscript for publication, may explain to the other author , that he has already accepted a similar manuscript for publication or such a manuscript is being prepared for publication). With respect to a manuscript, once a decision has been made, the Editor and members of the Editorial Board may disclose or publish the titles of manuscripts and the names of authors of papers accepted for publication, but only to the extent permitted by the author(s). In other cases, it is necessary to obtain additional permission from the author/authors.

    The editor respects the intellectual independence of the authors.

    Editorial responsibility and authority over the manuscript, the author of which is the editor himself and which is submitted for publication in the editor's journal, is transferred to another qualified person, such as another editor of the same journal or a member of the editorial expert panel. Consideration of a manuscript to be published in one or another form by its author editor is considered abuse of office/conflict of interest and thus, unjustified.

    Without the permission of the author of the manuscript submitted for publication, it is not allowed for the editor to use the information, arguments and explanations in the manuscript for his own research purposes, which are not published. However, if such information indicates that an editor's research is likely to be unfavorable, the editor is ethically entitled to terminate the work. If the manuscript is so closely related to the editor's past or current research that it causes a conflict of interest, the editor must delegate editorial responsibility for the given manuscript to another qualified person. In some cases, it may be necessary to inform the author about the editor's research and plans in the given field.

    If the editor is presented with proof that the main essence or conclusions of the report published in the editor's journal are erroneous, the editor is obliged to take care of publishing the corresponding report, where the error will be indicated and the error will be corrected, as far as possible. The report can be written by the person who first noticed the error or by the original author.

    The author can request the editor not to refer to one or another reviewer for consultation during the review of his manuscript. However, the editor may refer to one or more of the named reviewers if he/she believes that his/her opinion is indispensable for the thorough evaluation of the manuscript. This can happen, for example, when the manuscript is in clear disagreement with the potential reviewer's previous work.

    Ethical Obligations of Authors/contributors

    Manuscript authors are required to adhere to the guidelines for ethical conduct below. In case of violation of ethical norms, fines may be applied to the editor/editors, which, in addition to other sanctions, include the cancellation of publishing privileges.

    The main duty of the author is to present an accurate report of the conducted research and an objective review in which the importance of the conducted research is described.

    The author should understand that the space allocated for the publication of the manuscript in the magazine is a valuable resource and significant expenses have been incurred on it. Thus, the author is required to use it wisely and sparingly.

    The primary research report should contain sufficient data and references to publicly available sources of information that will allow the author's colleagues to cite the work. Upon request, authors should try to provide samples of unusual materials that cannot be obtained by other researchers. Such materials include clones, strains of microorganisms, antibodies, etc. In addition, upon request, authors must provide material transfer agreements to prevent uncontrolled and unintended use of the materials to protect the authors' legitimate rights.

    The author should make a reference to the publications that have significantly defined the content of the indicated work and that contain reference to all those works processed in the past that help the reader to better understand the given research. Citation of work that is not referenced in a given study should be kept to a minimum. This does not apply to the review. The author is obliged to conduct an informative search (literature search), find and indicate the source publications that contain the work related to the given work. In relation to the deficient material used in the work, appropriate citation is made with reference to the sources, if the material is not provided by the author, but by another person.

    If there is an unusual/rare hazard related to the chemicals, equipment or procedures used in the research, the latter should be clearly indicated in the manuscript on the basis of which the work is published.

    It is not recommended to divide the reports of scientific and research work. A scientist who has conducted large-scale work on a system or group of systems related to research should present a publication in such a way that each report provides a comprehensive overview of each specific aspect of the general research. A fragmented report takes up more space than necessary on the pages of the journal and makes it difficult to find the literature (information search). It is difficult for readers to perceive information when reports on relevant studies are published in the same journal or only in a few journals.

    When submitting a manuscript for publication, the author is obliged to inform the editor about the manuscripts related to his manuscript, which have been submitted to the author for editorial review or have been published in the press. Copies of these manuscripts must be submitted to the editor and must indicate the relationship between the manuscripts in question and the manuscript submitted for publication.

    It is not recommended that an author submit manuscripts describing essentially the same research for initial publication in more than one journal, unless it is a matter of resubmitting a manuscript that has been rejected or withdrawn from publication. In general, it is acceptable to submit an entire research manuscript that also reviews a brief preliminary report of the same work published in the past ("Communication" or "Letter"). However, when submitting such, the editor must be informed of the previous notification, and the prior notification must be cited in the manuscript.

    The author must indicate the source of all quoted and presented information, except for generally known/recognized information. The use and reference in the author's work of information obtained through private channels, such as informal conversations, correspondence and discussions with third parties, is not allowed without the special permission of the researcher with whom the information was obtained. The same rules apply to information received during confidential services such as manuscript review and questionnaire submission.

    Experimental or theoretical research may justify criticism of another scientist's work and, in some cases, even harsh criticism. If necessary, such critical evaluation can also be indicated in published papers. However, personal criticism is completely unacceptable.

    The co-authors of the paper should be persons who have made significant scientific contributions to the given paper and who, together with others, are responsible and consider themselves accountable for the results of the research. Other contributions made by co-authors to this paper are indicated in a footnote or in the “Acknowledgments” section. An administrative connection to the research does not in itself imply co-authorship of the given person (however, in the case of special administrative assistance, acknowledgment is recommended). Deceased individuals who meet the criteria for recognition as co-authors are listed as co-authors, and notice of their death (specifically, date of death) is given in a footnote. The author and co-author are not referred to by a fictitious name. An author submitting a manuscript for publication is responsible for the fact that the co-authors indicated by him are indeed co-authors of the manuscript and that no person who is not a co-author is referred to by the author as a co-author. The presenting author of the manuscript is required to send all living co-authors a copy of the manuscript and obtain the co-author's consent to co-author the manuscript.

    Ethical Obligations of Reviewers of Manuscripts

    Since manuscript review is an important step in the publication process and thus in optimal use of the scientific method, every scientist is obliged to use the services of a reviewer.

    The selected reviewer, who believes that he does not have adequate qualifications to evaluate the research presented by the manuscript, is obliged to immediately return the manuscript to the editor.

    The reviewer (or critic) of the manuscript is obliged to objectively and in compliance with high scientific and literary standards evaluate the quality of the manuscript, the experimental and theoretical work presented in it, its definition (interpretation) and description. The reviewer is obliged to respect the author's intellectual independence.

    The reviewer should pay close attention to the issue of avoiding conflict of interest if the manuscript under consideration is closely related to the work that the reviewer is working on or that has been published under the reviewer's authorship. In case of reasonable doubt, the reviewer should immediately return the manuscript without review and warn the editor of the potential conflict of interest or risk of bias or, in lieu of said action, the reviewer may submit a signed review describing the reviewer's interest in the paper; In this case, the reviewer agrees to transfer such review to the author.

    The reviewer is obliged not to review the manuscript with the author or co-author of which he has such a personal and professional relationship that may cause the reviewer to be biased when evaluating the manuscript.

    The reviewer is obliged to treat the manuscript submitted for review as a confidential document, which is not allowed to be shown and discussed with other persons, except for those persons to whom the reviewer applies for specific consultations. In such a case, the identity of the consultants should be reported to the editor.

    The reviewer must explain and justify his opinions so that it is clear to the editor and authors, on the basis of which the reviewer made his conclusions. The statement that this or that observation, conclusion or argument has already been made in the past should be accompanied by an appropriate citation. Unsubstantiated evidence from reviewers (or disputing authors) will not be considered.

    The reviewer should pay attention to the fact that authors cite relevant works of other scientists and remember that claims that the reviewer's own research has been insufficiently cited may be due to bias. The reviewer should draw the editor's attention to significant similarities between the manuscript submitted for review and a published paper or a manuscript simultaneously submitted for publication in another journal, if any.

    The reviewer is obliged to promptly perform the work assigned to him and submit the report on time. If the reviewer receives the manuscript at such a time that it is impossible to review the manuscript promptly under the given circumstances, the reviewer is obliged to immediately return the manuscript to the editor or inform the editor about the expected delay and agree to postpone the review.

    Without the permission of the author of the manuscript, it is not allowed for the reviewer to use or disclose the information, arguments and explanations in the manuscript that are not published. However, if such information indicates that the reviewer's study is likely to be unfavorable, the reviewer is ethically entitled to terminate the work. In some cases, it may be necessary for the reviewer to notify the author of the reviewer's plans in the given area, and to send a copy of such notification to the editor.

    During the review of the submitted manuscript, criticism from the reviewer can be used, in some cases, even harsh criticism. If necessary, such a critical evaluation can be published together with the papers. However, personal criticism is completely unacceptable.

    Ethical Obligations of Scientists Publishing Outside the Scientific Literature

    A scientist publishing in the popular literature has the same basic obligation to be accurate in reporting observations and unbiased in interpreting them as when publishing in a scientific journal.

    Inasmuch as laymen may not understand scientific terminology, the scientist may find it necessary to use common words of lesser precision to increase public comprehension. In view of the importance of scientists’ communicating with the general public, some loss of accuracy in that sense can be condoned. The scientist should, however, strive to keep public writing, remarks, and interviews as accurate as possible consistent with effective communication.

    A scientist should not proclaim a discovery to the public unless the experimental, statistical, or theoretical support for it is of strength sufficient to warrant publication in the scientific literature. An account of the experimental work and results that support a public pronouncement should be submitted as quickly as possible for publication in a scientific journal. Scientists should, however, be aware that disclosure of research results in the public press or in an electronic database or bulletin board might be considered by a journal editor as equivalent to a preliminary communication in the scientific literature.

    Last edition

    N1(531) - 2024

     
    © PUBLISHING HOUSE "TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY" 2019, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. LAST UPDATED ON 23.05.2024