Publication Ethics

Publication Ethics and Publication Malpractice Statement

Our publication ethics and publication malpractice statement is mainly based on the COPE Code of Conduct and Best-Practice Guidelines. More details can be found here:

We promote the best standards of publication ethics and take all possible measures against publication malpractice. We (IPLR GbR) take our responsibilities over all stages of publication very seriously and are aware of the importance of that.


Publication decisions
The editor is responsible for deciding which of the submitted papers will be published. The editor will evaluate contributions without regard to race, nationality, gender, religious belief, sexual orientation, ethnic origin, or political belief. The Editors´ decision to accept or reject a paper for publication should be based only on the paper´s importance, originality and clarity, and the study´s relevance to the aim of the journal. Applicable legal provisions relating to libel, copyright infringement and plagiarism should also be taken into account. This decision is based on the expert opinions provided by selected reviewers.

The editors and all editorial staff must not disclose any information about a submitted contribution to anyone other than the corresponding author, reviewers, potential reviewers, other editorial advisors and the publisher. Editors will ensure that submitted material remains confidential during the review process.

The editor will ensure preservation of access to the journal content by the Leibniz Information Centre for Science and Technology and University Library (TIB Hannover).

Peer review process
All papers are subject to a peer review process. The editor may reject a paper out of hand, either because it does not address the journal's topic or because it is obviously of such low quality that it cannot be considered at all. Articles that are suitable for review are then sent to experts in the field of the article. The reviewers are asked to rate the paper as publishable immediately, publishable with minor changes and improvements, or publishable with major changes and improvements (additional review necessary). The reviewers may classify the paper as unpublishable only after a second review process, when the author has had the opportunity to incorporate the reviewers' comments from the first review. The reviewers' assessments always include an explicit recommendation on what should be done with the paper. The reviewers' comments are then forwarded to the author. Editors should be prepared to justify any important deviation from the procedure described. Editors should not reverse publication decisions unless serious problems are identified.

Disclosure and conflicts of interest
Unpublished material disclosed in a submitted article may not be used by the publisher or members of the editorial board for their own research purposes without the explicit written consent of the author.


Reporting standards
Contributors should provide an accurate description of the work done and an objective discussion of its significance. The underlying data should be presented accurately in the paper. A paper should include sufficient detail and references to allow others to reproduce the work. Fraudulent or knowingly inaccurate information constitutes unethical behaviour and is unacceptable. Authors alone are responsible for ensuring that the content of their article is truthful and scientifically appropriate. Articles should be accurate and objective.

Data access and retention
Authors may be asked to provide the raw data of their findings in conjunction with a paper for editorial review and should be prepared to provide public access to these data where practicable, and in any case should be prepared to retain these data for a reasonable time after publication.

Originality, plagiarism and acknowledgement of sources
Authors agree to submit only entirely original works and to cite the work and/or words of others in an appropriate manner. Authors should also cite publications that have been influential in determining the nature of the submitted work. Plagiarism of any kind constitutes unethical publishing behaviour and is unacceptable. Proper acknowledgment of the work of others must always be given. Information obtained privately, in conversations, correspondence or discussions with third parties may not be used or disclosed without the explicit written permission of the source. Information obtained in the course of confidential services, e.g. peer review of papers, may not be used without the explicit written permission of the author of the work included in those services.

Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication
An author should generally not publish papers describing essentially the same research in more than one journal or primary publication. Submitting the same paper to more than one journal without proper referencing constitutes unethical publishing behaviour. Submissions that have already been published elsewhere as copyrighted material may not be submitted. In addition, papers that are peer-reviewed by the journal should not be resubmitted to copyrighted publications. In general, an author should not submit an already published paper to another journal for review. Copyright remains with the authors so that they can decide whether to republish their text. Nevertheless, the first publication must be cited in the second publication.

Authorship of the paper
Authorship should be limited to those who have made a significant contribution to the conception, design, execution, or interpretation of the submitted paper. All those who have made significant contributions should be listed as co-authors. The corresponding author ensures that all contributing co-authors and no uninvolved persons are included in the list of authors and also ensures that all co-authors have agreed to the final version of the paper and consent to its submission for publication.

Disclosure and conflicts of interest
All authors should disclose in their paper any financial or other material conflicts of interest that could be construed as influencing the results or interpretation of their paper. All sources of financial support for the project should be disclosed. Potential conflicts of interest should be disclosed at the earliest possible stage. Readers should be informed about who funded the research and the role of the funders in the research.

Fundamental errors in published works
If an author discovers a significant error or inaccuracy in his or her own published work, it is his or her duty to notify the editor or publisher of the journal immediately and to cooperate in withdrawing the work or correcting it in the form of an erratum. If the editor or publisher learns from a third party that a published work contains a significant error and informs the author thereof, the author is obliged to withdraw or correct the work immediately or to provide the editor with proof of the accuracy of the original work.


Contribution to editorial decisions
The peer review process helps the editor make editorial decisions and is designed to help the author improve his or her work. Peer review is an essential component of formal scholarly communication.

Any selected reviewer who does not feel qualified to review a paper, or who is not in a position to review a paper or knows that a rapid review is not possible, should inform the editors so that a decision can be made on how to proceed.

Any papers received for review must be treated as confidential documents. They must not be shown to or discussed with others except as authorized by the editor.

Standards of objectivity
Reviews should be conducted objectively. Personal criticism of the author is inappropriate. Reviewers should express their views clearly with supporting arguments.

Acknowledgement of sources
Reviewers should point out cases where relevant published work referred to in the paper has not been cited in the reference section. They should point out whether observations or arguments derived from other publications are cited with the relevant source. Reviewers inform the editor of any significant similarities or overlaps between the manuscript under review and another published work of which they have personal knowledge.

Disclosure and conflict of interest
Unpublished material disclosed in a submitted paper may not be used for the reviewer's own research without the author's written consent. Privileged information or ideas obtained through the review process must be kept confidential and must not be used for personal gain. Reviewers should not review papers in which they have conflicts of interest arising from competitive, collaborative or other relationships or affiliations with any of the authors, companies or institutions associated with the papers.