The editorial policies of Your-Safe-Abortion follow the Principles of Transparency and Best Practice in Scholarly Publishing (joint statement by COPE, DOAJ, WAME, and OASPA), the NISO Recommended Practices for the Presentation and Identification of E-Journals (PIE-J), and, where relevant, the Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals from ICMJE.
Personal data and privacy statement
The personal information on Your-Safe-Abortion’s Website will be used exclusively for each particular journal, publishing platform, or research project. It will not be made available for any other purpose or to any other party in complete correspondence with the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
Your-Safe-Abortion adheres strictly to gold open access to accelerate the barrier-free dissemination of scientific knowledge. Therefore, all published articles are made freely available to read, download, and distribute immediately upon publication, given that the original source and authors are cited [Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 4.0)].
Open data publishing and sharing
Your-Safe-Abortion encourages open data publication and sharing by Panton’s Principles and FAIR Data Principles. For the domain of biodiversity-related publications, Your-Safe-Abortion has specially developed extended Data Publishing Policies and Guidelines for Biodiversity Data. Specific data publishing guidelines are available on the Website.
Data can be published in various ways, such as preservation in data repositories linked to the respective article or as data files or packages supplementary to the report. Datasets should be deposited in an appropriate, trusted repository, and the associated identifier (URL or DOI) of the dataset(s) must be included in the data resources section of the article. Reference(s) to datasets should also be included in the article’s reference list with DOIs (where available). Authors should deposit their datasets in a general repository such as Zenodo or others where no discipline-specific data repository exists.
SUBMISSION, PEER REVIEW, AND EDITORIAL PROCESS
An online editorial system and email notifications facilitate the peer review and editorial processes. Your-Safe-Abortion website displays step-by-step descriptions of the editorial process and lists all necessary instructions and links. These links are also included in the respective email notification.
General: Publication and authorship
- All submitted papers are subject to a rigorous peer review process by at least two international reviewers who are experts in the scientific field of the particular article.
- The factors considered in the review are relevance, soundness, significance, originality, readability, and language.
- The articles allow a maximum of two rounds of review of a manuscript. However, the ultimate responsibility for editorial decisions lies with the respective Subject Editor and, in some cases, with the Editor-in-Chief. Accordingly, all appeals should be directed to the Editor-in-Chief, who may decide to seek advice from the Subject Editors and Reviewers.
- The possible decisions include: (1) Accept, (2) Minor revisions, (2) Major revisions, (3) Reject, but re-submission encouraged and (5) Reject.
- If Authors are encouraged to revise and re-submit a submission, there is no guarantee that the revised proposal will be accepted.
- The acceptance of the paper is constrained by such legal requirements as shall then be in force regarding libel, copyright infringement, and plagiarism.
- No research can be included in more than one publication.
Responsibility of Authors
- Authors must agree that their paper will be published in open access under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 4.0) license.
- Authors must certify that their manuscripts are their original work.
- Authors must certify that the manuscript has not previously been published elsewhere.
- Authors must certify that the manuscript is not currently being considered for publication elsewhere.
- Authors should submit the manuscript in linguistically and grammatically correct English and formatted by the Author’s Guidelines.
- Authors must participate in the peer review process.
- Authors are obliged to provide retractions or corrections of mistakes.
- All Authors mentioned are expected to have significantly contributed to the research.
- Authors must notify the Editors of any conflicts of interest.
- Authors must identify all sources used in the creation of their manuscripts.
- Authors must report any errors they discover in their published paper to the Editors.
- Authors should acknowledge all significant research funders about their article and list all relevant competing interests.
- Other sources of support for publications should also be clearly identified in the manuscript, usually in an acknowledgment (e.g., funding for the article processing charge, language editing, or editorial assistance).
- The Corresponding author should provide the declaration of any conflicts of interest on behalf of all Authors. Conflicts of interest may be associated with employment, funding sources, personal financial interests, membership in relevant organizations, or others.
Responsibility of Reviewers
- Two or three experts will review the manuscripts to reach the first decision as soon as possible. Reviewers do not need to sign their reports but are welcome to do so. They are also asked to declare any conflicts of interest.
- Reviewers are not expected to provide thorough linguistic editing or copyediting of a manuscript but to focus on its scientific quality and overall style, which should correspond to good practices in clear and concise academic writing. If Reviewers recognize that a manuscript requires linguistic edits, they should inform both the Authors and the Editor in the report.
- Reviewers are asked to check whether the manuscript is scientifically sound and coherent, how interesting it is, and whether the quality of the writing is acceptable.
- In cases of strong disagreement between the reviews or between the Authors and Reviewers, the Editors can judge these according to their expertise or seek advice from a member of the Editorial Board.
- Reviewers are also asked to indicate which articles they consider to be especially interesting or significant. As a result, these articles may be given greater prominence and more significant external publicity, including press releases addressed to science journalists and mass media.
- During a second review round, the Reviewer may be asked by the Subject Editor to evaluate the revised version of the manuscript regarding the Reviewer’s recommendations submitted during the first review round.
- Reviewers are asked to be polite and constructive in their reports. Reports that may be insulting or uninformative will be rescinded.
- Reviewers are asked to start their report with a brief summary of the reviewed paper. This will help the Editors and Authors see whether the Reviewer correctly understood the form or whether an essay might be based on a misunderstanding.
- Further, Reviewers are asked to comment on originality, structure, and previous research: (1) Is the paper sufficiently novel and contributes to a better understanding of the topic under scrutiny? Is the work rather confirmatory and repetitive? (2) Is the introduction clear and concise? Does it place the piece into the context that is necessary for a reader to comprehend the aims, hypotheses tested, experimental design, or methods? Are Material and Methods clearly described and sufficiently explained? Are reasons given when choosing one method over another from a set of comparable methods? Are the results clearly but concisely described? Do they relate to the topic outlined in the introduction? Do they follow a logical sequence? Does the discussion place the paper in a scientific context and go a step beyond the current scientific knowledge based on the results? Are competing hypotheses or theories reasonably related to each other and properly discussed? Do conclusions seem reasonable? Is previous research adequately incorporated into the paper? Are references complete, necessary, and accurate? Is there any sign that substantial parts of the report were copies of other works?
- Reviewers should not review manuscripts with conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships or connections with any of the authors, companies, or institutions connected to the papers.
- Reviewers should keep all information regarding papers confidential and treat them as privileged information.
- Reviewers should express their views clearly with supporting arguments.
- Reviewers should identify relevant published work that the authors have not cited.
- Reviewers should also call to the Editor’s attention any substantial similarity or overlap between the manuscript under consideration and any other published paper of which they have personal knowledge.
Responsibility of Editors
- Editors on the Your-Safe-Abortion website are primarily responsible for the scientific quality of the published papers and base their decisions solely on the paper’s importance, originality, clarity, and relevance to the publication’s scope.
- The Subject Editor decides on a manuscript’s acceptance or rejection, and his/her name is listed as “Academic Editor” in the header of each article.
- The Subject Editors are not expected to provide thorough linguistic editing or copyediting of a manuscript but to focus on its scientific quality and overall style, which should correspond to good practices in clear and concise academic writing.
- Editors are expected to spot minor errors in orthography or stylistics during the editing process and correct them.
- Editors should always consider the needs of the Authors and the Readers when attempting to improve the publication.
- Editors should guarantee the papers’ quality and the academic record’s integrity.
- Editors should preserve Reviewers’ anonymity unless they later disclose their identities.
- Editors should ensure that all published research material conforms to internationally accepted ethical guidelines.
- Editors should act if they suspect misconduct and make all reasonable attempts to obtain a resolution to the problem.
- Editors should accept papers based on suspicions and have proof of misconduct.
- Editors should not allow conflicts of interest between Authors, Reviewers, and Board Members.
Neutrality to geopolitical disputes
The strict policy of Your-Safe-Abortion is to stay neutral in any political or territorial dispute. Therefore, authors should depoliticize their studies by avoiding provoking remarks, disputable geopolitical statements, and controversial map designations. In case this is unavoidable, the Website reserves the right to mark such at least as arguable at or after publication, to publish editor’s notes, or to reject/retract the papers.
Your-Safe-Abortion does not take decisions regarding the actual affiliations of institutions. Therefore, authors are advised to provide their association as indicated on the official internet site of their institution.
Editorial decisions should not be affected by the origins of the manuscript, including the nationality, ethnicity, political beliefs, race, or religion of the authors. Likewise, decisions to edit and publish should not be determined by the policies of governments or other agencies outside of the Website itself.
Human and animal rights
The ethical standards in medical and pharmacological studies are based on the Helsinki declaration (1964, amended in 1975, 1983, 1989, 1996, and 2000) of the World Medical Association and the Publication Ethics Policies for Medical Journals of the World Association of Medical Journals (WAME).
Authors of studies including experiments on humans or human tissues should declare in their cover letter compliance with the ethical standards of the respective institutional or regional committee on human experimentation and attach the committee’s statement and informed consent; for those researchers who do not have access to formal ethics review committees, the principles outlined in the Declaration of Helsinki should be followed and declared in the cover letter. Patients’ names, initials, or hospital numbers should not be used in the text, any illustrative material, or database tables unless the author presents written permission from each patient to use his or her personal data. Photos or videos of patients should be taken after a warning and agreement of the patient or a legal authority acting on his or her behalf.
Animal experiments require full compliance with local, national, ethical, and regulatory principles. Therefore, local licensing arrangements and respective compliance statements (or approvals of institutional ethical committees where such exists) should be included in the article text.
Individual study participants have the right to decide what happens to the identifiable personal data gathered, what they have said during an examination or an interview, and whether any photographs were taken. Hence, all participants must give their informed consent in writing before inclusion in They. They identifying details (names, dates of birth, identity numbers, and other information) of the participants that were studied should not be published in written descriptions, photographs, and genetic profiles unless the information is essential for scientific purposes and the participant (or parent or guardian if the participant is incapable) gave written informed consent for publication. In some cases, complete anonymity is difficult to achieve, and informed consent should be obtained if there is any doubt. If identifying characteristics are altered to protect anonymity, such as in genetic profiles, authors should ensure that alterations do not distort scientific meaning.
The following statement should be included in the article text in one of the following ways:
- “Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.”
- “Informed consent was obtained from all individuals for whom identifying information is included in this article.” (In case some patients’ data have been published in the article or supplementary materials to it).
We encourage using gender-neutral language, such as ‘chairperson’ instead of ‘chairman’ or ‘chairwomen,’ as well as ‘they’ instead of ‘she/he’ and ‘their’ instead of ‘him/her’ (or consider restructuring the sentence).
Conflict of interest
During the editorial process, the following relationships between editors and authors are considered conflicts of interest: Current colleagues, recent colleagues, recent co-authors, and doctoral students for which the editor served as committee chair. During the submission process, the authors are kindly advised to identify possible conflicts of interest with the editors. After manuscripts are assigned to the handling editor, individual editors must inform the managing editor of any potential conflicts of interest with the authors. Article submissions are also given to referees to minimize conflicts of interest. After manuscripts are posted for review, referees are asked to inform the editor of any conflicts that may exist.
Corrections, retractions, and editorial expressions of concern
Appeals and open debate
We encourage academic debate and constructive criticism. Accordingly, authors are always invited to respond to any editorial correspondence before publication. However, authors cannot neglect unfavorable comments about their work and choose not to respond to criticisms.
No Reviewer’s comment or published correspondence may contain a personal attack on any of the Authors. However, criticism of the work is encouraged. Editors should edit (or reject) personal or offensive statements. Authors should submit their appeal on editorial decisions to the Editorial Office, addressed to the Editor-in-Chief or the Managing Editor. Authors are discouraged from directly contacting Editorial Board Members and Editors with appeals.
Editors will mediate all discussions between Authors and Reviewers during the peer review process before publication. If an agreement cannot be reached, Editors may consider inviting additional reviewers if appropriate.
The Editor-in-Chief will mediate all discussions between Authors and Subject Editors.
The Website encourages the publication of honest opinions, forum papers, corrigenda, critical comments on a published article, and the Author’s response to criticism.
Research misconduct may include (a) manipulating research materials, equipment, or processes; (b) changing or omitting data or results such that the research is not accurately represented in the article; and (c) plagiarism. Research misconduct does not include honest errors or differences of opinion. If misconduct is suspected, Editors will follow the relevant COPE guidelines.
Plagiarism and duplicate publication policy
A particular misconduct case is plagiarism, which appropriates another person’s ideas, processes, results, or words without giving appropriate credit. Plagiarism is considered intellectual property theft, and manuscripts submitted to this Website that contain substantial unattributed textual copying from other papers will be immediately rejected. Editors can check manuscripts for plagiarism via the iThenticate service by clicking the “ïThenticate report” button. In addition, the Website providing a peer review in languages other than English (for example, Russian) may use other plagiarism checking services (for instance, Antiplagiat).
When authors re-use large parts of their publications without providing an apparent reference to the source, they are considered a duplication of work. Slightly changed published works submitted in multiple journals are not acceptable practices either. In cases of plagiarism in an already published paper or duplicate publication, an announcement will be made on the publication page, and a retraction procedure will be triggered.
Responses to possible misconduct
All allegations of misconduct must be referred to the Editor-In-Chief. Upon thorough examination, the Editor-In-Chief and deputy editors should conclude if the case concerns a possibility of misconduct. All allegations should be kept confidential, and references to the matter in writing should be kept anonymous whenever possible.
Should the Reviewers or Editors submit a comment on potential misconduct, the authors will seek an explanation. The matter can be quickly resolved if it is satisfactory and the issue results from a mistake or misunderstanding. If not, the manuscript will be rejected or retracted, and the Editors may impose a ban on that individual’s publication on the Website for a certain period. Both journals will make an announcement explaining the situation in cases of published plagiarism or dual publication.
When allegations concern authors, their submission’s peer review and publication process is halted until the abovementioned method is completed. The investigation will be carried out even if the authors withdraw the manuscript, and the implementation of the responses below will be considered.
When allegations concern reviewers or editors, they will be replaced in the review process during the ongoing investigation of the material. However, editors or reviewers who are found to have engaged in scientific misconduct should be removed from further association with the Website, and this fact should be reported to their institution.
According to the COPE Retraction Guidelines followed by this Website, an article can be retracted because of the following reasons:
- Unreliable findings based on clear evidence of misconduct (e.g., fraudulent use of the data) or honest error (e.g., miscalculation or experimental error).
- Redundant publication, e.g., findings that have previously been published elsewhere without proper cross-referencing, permission, or justification.
- Plagiarism or another kind of unethical research.
- Retraction should happen after careful consideration by the editors of allegations from the editors, authors, or readers.
- The HTML version of the retracted article is removed (except for the article metadata), and in its place, a retraction note is issued.
- The PDF of the retracted article is left on the Website but clearly watermarked with the note “Retracted” on each page.
- In some rare cases (e.g., for legal reasons or health risks), the retracted article can be replaced with a new corrected version containing an apparent link to the original rejected version and a retraction note with a history of the document.
Expression of concern
In other cases, the editors should consider issuing an expression of concern if the evidence is available for:
- Inconclusive evidence of research or publication misconduct by the authors.
- Unreliable findings are unreliable, but the authors’ institution will not investigate the case.
- A belief that an investigation into alleged misconduct related to the publication either has not been or would not be fair, impartial, or conclusive.
- An investigation is underway, but a judgment will not be available for a considerable time.
Errata and Corrigenda
Your-Safe-Abortion articles largely follow the ICMJE guidelines for corrections and errata.
Admissible and insignificant errors in a published article that do not affect the article content or scientific integrity (e.g., typographic errors, broken links, wrong page numbers in the article headers, etc.) can be corrected through publishing an erratum. This happens by replacing the original PDF with the corrected one, with a correction notice on the Erratum Tab of the HTML version of the paper detailing the errors and the changes implemented in the original PDF. The actual PDF will be marked with a correction note and an indication of the corrected version of the erratum article. In addition, the original PDF will be archived and made accessible via a link in the same Erratum Tab.
Authors are also encouraged to post comments and indicate typographical errors in their articles in the Comments tab of the HTML version of the paper.
Corrigenda should be published in cases when significant errors are discovered in a published article. Usually, such errors affect the scientific integrity of the paper and could vary in scale. Reasons for publishing corrigenda may include changes in authorship, unintentional mistakes in published research findings and protocols, errors in the labeling of tables and figures, or others. In addition, Corrigenda is often needed in taxonomic articles where mistakes affect nomenclatural acts. Corrigenda are published as a separate publication and bear their own DOI. Examples of published corrigenda are available here.
The decision for issuing errata or corrigenda is with the editors after discussion with the authors.
Your-Safe-Abortion does not use commercial advertising on its websites. Instead, the relevant article collections typically display logos of research projects, institutions, or organizations and brief descriptions. Third-party journals hosted on the Your-Safe-Abortion Platform are free to post adverts on their websites because they are not scandalous or provocative.