Code of Ethics
- Declaration on moral and ethical principles of publishing
The Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Law (ISSN: 1788-6171) – hereinafter referred to as the Journal – applies double-blind peer-review. Each party contributing to the publication (author, journal editor, reviewer and publisher) shall accept the standards relevant for the expected moral behaviour. The present moral statement is based on the Best Practice Guidelines for Journal Editors applicable by journal editors of the COPE (Committee on Publication Ethics, http://publicationethics.org/about).
The Journal only accepts original manuscripts which have not been published in other journals in English, French or German prior to the submission to the Journal. With the exception of English, German and French, earlier publication in any national language is not an obstacle of submission.
Submitted manuscripts are subjects to a general editorial review before being sent to peer-reviewers. Peer-reviewers are experts in the field relevant for the respective manuscript, and their independence is ensured both from a personal and an organisational viewpoint.
The peer-review is based on anonymity in both directions. It means that peer-reviewers do not know the identity of authors, and vice versa. The Editorial Board sends all submitted papers to two experts holding a PhD in order to give their professional opinion on the respective manuscript. The Journal's editorial principle is that no study can be published in the Journal which has not received at least one supporting opinion. However, the Editorial Board reserves the right to make the final decision even in the case of two supporting opinions.
Authors are required to submit their manuscript in English, German or French. The submission of the manuscript in the author's mother tongue paralelly is a possibility.
During peer-review, correspondence with peer-reviewers is via e-mail. Correspondence in connection with peer-review and the peer-reviewers’ opinions are archived by the editor-in-chief.
While the Editor-in-Chief and editors are in charge of the formal aspects, peer-reviewers called upon by the Editorial Board are responsible for substantial aspects:
A. The Editor-in-Chief and editors shall answer the following questions:
A.1. Has the manuscript been submitted in a way to ensure anonimity? Yes/No
A.2. Does the manuscript meet the Guide for Authors? Yes/No
A.3. Did the author(s) attach the declaration that they hadn’t recommended their manuscript for publication to other journals and that their manuscript has not been published yet? Yes/No
A.4.a. In case of a PhD student, did the author(s) attach the recommendation of her/his supervisor(s)? Yes/No
A.4.b. In case of an undergraduate student, did the author(s) attach the recommendation of her/his supervisor? Yes/No
The Editorial Board may invite peer-reviewers from its own members, the International Advisory and Peer-Review Board, and/or external peer-reviewers.
Peer-review is anonymous, so authors and peer-reviewers do not know the identity of each other. The Editorial Board draws the peer reviewer’s attention that he/she maintains the final decision of publication. The Editorial Board also draws the attention that it cannot pay remuneration for peer-review, but on request it can issue a certificate about peer-reviewing.
In connection with peer-review, the peer reviewers need to answer the following questions by underlining/explicating:
Is the article of high quality? Yes/No
Are the relevant national and international sources of law and case law adequately processed in relation to the subject of the research? Yes/No (Peer-reviewers may suggest further sources of law and case law for the author to process.)
Does the article include the relevant national and international scholarly literature on the subject of the research? Yes/No (Peer-reviewers may suggest further scholarly literature for the author to process.)
Does the article evaluate the analyzed sources of law and case law, and does it contain de lege ferenda proposals? (Does the article contain original scientific results?) Yes/No
Is the citation system of the article based on the Guide for Authors? Yes/No
Does the peer-reviewer recommend the article to be published in the Journal? Yes/No/With changes (For example, with the above-mentioned additions in connection with sources of law, case law or scientific literature.)
- The obligations of peer-reviewers
Contribution to editorial decisions
Peer-reviewers help editors make their decisions and support authors anonymously in raising the academic level of their article during the process of review.
In case the invited peer-reviewer finds that by reason of the lack of professional knowledge on the topic included in the manuscript, she/he cannot assess the research results for originality, validity and significance, or knows that she/he cannot prepare her/his opinion effectively and in time, she/he is obliged to notify the editor and waive her/his participation.
All manuscripts received for evaluation should be considered as confidential document. They can only be released or discussed with other persons with the prior consent of the editor.
The evaluation shall be carried out objectively. Peer-reviewers shall make their views straightforward and arguing.
Reference to sources
Peer-reviewers should shed light on those scholarly publications which have not been cited by the author(s) but are relevant and important to the respective manuscript. Any finding which contains an observation, thought or argument from an earlier scholarly publication has to be accompanied by appropriately indicating the source of that observation, thought or argument. Peer-reviewers shall also draw the editor's attention to any substantive similarity between the manuscript under examination and other scholarly materials previously published.
Disclosure and conflict of interest
Privileged pieces of information and ideas obtained during the evaluation shall be handled confidentially and shall not be used for personal promotion. No peer-reviewers can be invited to evaluate the manuscript who may be in conflict of interest with the author(s) and/or institutions.
- Decisions on publishing
The editor decides whether the manuscript submitted will be published in the Journal. The editor can be guided by the guidelines set by the Journal's Editorial Board and is limited by the current legislation on libel, copyright infringement and plagiarism. The editor may ask for help from other editors and the peer-reviewers to make her/his decision. The Journal's editor is allowed to run a computer programme for filtering out plagiarism.
- Equal opportunities
The editor always evaluates the content of manuscripts regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, ethnic origin, nationality or political views of the respective authors.
The Journal's staff (editors, Editorial Board, International Advisory and Peer-Review Board) treats all pieces of information confidential regarding the manuscript submitted for publication.
- Disclosure and conflict of interest
The editor is not allowed to use the unpublished material of the submitted manuscript for his own research without the author's prior written consent.
- The Obligations authors
Guidelines for disclosure
Authors presenting original research should provide an accurate report of the work performed. The drawing of interpretations and conclusions can only be based on facts or unbiased and logical evidence. The background data of the article should be accurately presented. The article should provide sufficient detail and reference so that the processes described can be repeated by others. False or knowingly inaccurate claims are considered unethical and unacceptable behavior.
If authors would like to revoke or correct any part of the study, they should contact one of the editors who will launch the general peer-reviewing process for the revised parts.
The publisher and the editors support correcting, clarifying, retracting or explaining the content of the article in all cases.
The submission of the manuscript and any amendments or supplements thereto shall be free of charge. The author is not remunerated for the publication.
Originality and plagiarism
Authors shall guarantee that the article is their own original intellectual work and if they used others’ research and/or expressions, those are cited appropriately according to the rules laid down in the Guide for Authors.
The publisher and editors will take the necessary steps if a manuscript is suspected of plagiarism. Under no circumstances may the publisher and the editors be identified with any forms of plagiarism conducts and they do not permit any forms of them. If a statement for plagiarism is sent to the publisher or the editors in connection with any of the studies, the editors scrutinise the circumstances and take the necessary steps.
Multiple, redundant or simultaneous publishing
It is not a good practice to include the manuscript of the same research in various independent publications or journals. The submission of the same manuscript to different journals is deemed unethical behaviour and unacceptable.
Reference to sources
The cited works must be properly referred to in all cases. Authors should refer to all publications that have influenced their work.
The position of study authorship
Any person who has contributed substantially to the concept, design, implementation or interpretation of the presented article should be included as author. Those should be indicated as co-authors who have contributed significantly to the study. However, those should be mentioned as contributors who have been involved in certain important stages of the research project. Furthermore, the correspondent author should warrant that all major co-authors are mentioned in the study and he has not nominated persons as co-authors who are not entitled for it and all co-authors have seen and approved the final version of the study and agreed to publish it.
Disclosure and conflict of interest
Each author is obliged to disclose the financial or other material conflicts of interest in his manuscript which may influence its results or interpretation. All funding sources of the project should be made public.