Publication Ethics

Ethical publication norms exist to ensure high-quality scientific publications, public faith in scientific findings, and credit for individuals' ideas. It is necessary to avoid:

• Data fraud and falsification: Data fabrication means that the researcher did not conduct the study but fabricated the data. Data falsification occurs when the researcher conducts an experiment but then changes some of the data.

• Plagiarism: Taking credit for other scientists' ideas and effort is unethical and unfair. Copying even one sentence from another person's manuscript, or one of your own that has already been published, without proper citation is considered plagiarism; instead, use your own words.

• Incorrect author contribution or attribution: All stated authors must have made a meaningful scientific contribution to the research and approved all claims. Don't forget to include everyone who made an important scientific contribution, including students and laboratory personnel. Do not "gift" authorship to somebody who did not contribute to the paper. The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors provides extensive criteria on authorship that are relevant for scientists in many fields: 

It is unethical to submit a work to multiple journals simultaneously. This wastes the work of editors and peer reviewers, and if published in many journals, it can harm the authors' and journals' reputations because the subsequent publication must be retracted.

Redundant publications, often known as'salami' publications, refer to the publication of many manuscripts based on a single experiment. Combining your findings into a single, strong publication is more likely to be of interest to a selective journal. Editors are more inclined to reject a weak article that they believe is the consequence of salami slicing.

Many publications have tools and systems in place to detect researchers who exhibit unethical behaviour. If caught, your work may be rejected without review and your institution notified.

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