As a leading plant biology journal, JIPB strives to serve authors and readers as a forum to present and discuss scientific discoveries in plant biology - providing a platform for dissemination of original research and facilitating the exchange of ideas in the plant science community.
As part of our efforts to improve the quality of the journal, we would like to emphasize the importance of maintaining high ethical standards when publishing articles in JIPB:
1) Articles submitted to JIPB must not contain any results that have been reported in any journals or books in any form. The articles must be authentic and should not contain manipulated data or fraudulent information and must not contain any results that have been, or will be, submitted to other journals. This also applies to direct translation between different languages.
2) JIPB requires that submitted manuscripts are solely the author’s own work and not the work of others, unless explicit permission has been granted. This includes text, figures and tables. Information from published articles must always be cited explicitly. Proper citation is to give the credit to the work that was originally published, not to follow-up work or reviews. Citations should be given close to the relevant information within a sentence or at the end of a sentence, not after several sentences or near the end of a paragraph. Even when citations are given, exact copying of a whole sentence or paragraphs should be indicated by quotation marks. Furthermore, re-use of part of a published figure or table requires copyright permission from the publishers that hold the rights. All re-published figures and tables should explicitly indicate the original source.
3) Articles should describe results as accurately as possible, and avoid using statements of opinions as facts. The manuscript should present the results in a direct way and avoid misleading the reader or causing misunderstandings. It is important to discuss the significance of the results; at the same time, it is crucial not to over-interpret the results. Excessive or biased interpretation will not contribute to scientific progress and will mislead readers.
4) Articles should present a balanced perspective through proper citation of relevant literature in the field, rather than a biased view. Although it is reasonable to favor a specific interpretation over others, it is important to consider opposing or competing hypotheses. Even when a postulate is supported by more convincing evidence or a greater amount of data than others, alternative possibilities that cannot be eliminated should be discussed. Consideration of various possibilities does not weaken the conclusions, but offers the readers a more comprehensive understanding of the issue.
5) To be considered an author, the person in question should have made direct and meaningful contributions to the article, and should have contributed to one or more of the following items: (1) coordination of the research project, (2) design of the research plan, (3) carrying out experimentation and (4) data analysis. It is the corresponding authors’ responsibility to seek permission from each author to publish the materials and to get consensus on the authorship before submission to JIPB.
In summary, academic misconduct in any form will not be tolerated by JIPB. In cases of suspected misconduct (plagiarism, fraud, breached intellectual property rights, etc.) a panel will be formed to evaluate the substance of the claim. If the claim is supported by evidence, the paper in question will be rejected for consideration in JIPB and all authors and their affiliations will be informed. In cases where the paper has already been published before the misconduct was discovered, a retraction by authors or by the JIPB board will have to take place and the case will be made public. Evident cases of misconduct may result in a three-year or longer ban from future submission to JIPB. All appeals regarding the panel’s decisions have to go through the Editor-in-Chief and should be submitted within 30 days of the decision date.
The JIPB Editorial Board
Nov. 20th, 2009