Ethical Policy of JJDMS

Xavier Institute of Social Service (XISS) is committed to engage in the work of enhancing quality and value based higher education. One avenue to pursue this goal is publication of our quarterly journal, the Jharkhand Journal of Development and Management Studies (JJDMS). In order to maintain its quality and standard, the Editorial Team has come up with an ethical policy. This policy is applicable to all partners in the journal production and publishing process, i.e. authors, reviewers, and Editorial Team.

Authors should agree to this ethical code before submitting their contribution.

Author’s Responsibility

The author’s submitted article should be original research work. It can be based on primary (field-based) or secondary (literature-based) research. Ethical standards should be adhered to during primary research, which means that among other things, informed consent should be sought and gained from respondents. Data should not be fabricated or falsified (manipulated) neither should the analysis include any misrepresentation. Data and records should be properly managed, such that if requested, the author can provide clear and accurate records of the procedures followed. Duty of Care over respondents and others involved in the research (including animals) should be maintained. Thus, the author should not breach confidentiality or place any person in danger or psychological discomfort. Literature and data referred to in the article should be properly cited and referenced (using APA style), including by giving page number whenever required. Photos should be credited to their owner.

After the review process, authors have the responsibility to revise the manuscript based on the reviewers’ comments. Authors should clarify point by point how and where the changes have been done in a covering letter to be submitted along with the revised manuscript. The time period of the revisions will be handled on the level of revisions, either minor revisions (e.g. within 4 days) or major revisions (e.g. 14 days).

Novel publication: Only original research papers should be submitted to JJDMS. The author should not simultaneously submit his/her paper to another journal; neither should he/she submit an article that has already been published elsewhere. The article will be pre-checked by the Editorial Team before being sent for peer-review.

Follow the guidelines for submission: The manuscript should only be submitted after consultation of the JJDMS Guidelines for Submission. If these guidelines are not adhered to, the author/s will be requested to re-submit their manuscript after modifying it according to the set guidelines. Furthermore, if several authors co-author the manuscript, the main and corresponding author should be the scholar who has contributed most to the research work and the manuscript production. All institutes, funding agencies and individuals who have played a role in the research process should be acknowledged in the manuscript.

Avoiding plagiarism: JJDMS is taking a strict stance against any kind of plagiarism. The Editorial Team will check the manuscript using plagiarism detection software before the peer review process begins. If any plagiarism is found, the manuscript will be immediately returned to the author. After re-submission, and after the peer review process, the revised manuscript will also be checked for plagiarism using the detection software.

Avoiding self-plagiarism: Authors are requested not to re-use their own published or unpublished data and text from any other manuscript without proper citation.

Peer Review Process

The JJDMS peer review process is based on at least two blind peer-reviews. After checking the initial submission (that it follows the Guidelines for Submission), the manuscript will be given a code number to give anonymity to the manuscript’s author until it gets accepted or rejected. It will then be checked for plagiarism using the software. Only if it contains none or minimum levels of plagiarism will it be forwarded to two reviewers, one internal and one external to XISS. On receipt of the peer reviewers’ comments they will be cross-checked, and then forwarded to the author. The author should address the peer reviewers’ concerns and re-submit the revised manuscript with a covering letter. At this point, the revised manuscript and covering letter will be returned to the peer reviewer, who will check that their concerns have been adequately addressed. The final decision regarding publication of the manuscript will be made by the Editorial Team depending upon the assessment of all the reviewers.

Reviewer’s Responsibility

Peer review is an important activity, because it offers an element of quality control to scholarly work. The process seeks to weed out articles that are not of sufficient quality for the journal. Reviewers will be selected based on their thematic areas of work, and JJDMS encourages scholars to come forward to provide their name for our database of peer-reviewers. In addition to specialist reviewers, JJDMS may conduct peer reviewing through a non-expert in the field, for the purpose of checking the readability of the manuscript.

The reviewer’s comments can be critical and tough; however they should be constructive to help the author to revise the manuscript in a productive way. The reviewer will use the format provided by JJDMS to give comments/feedback. We highly encourage reviewers to suggest further reading, and to give point by point clarifications. The reviewer can use the Microsoft Word’s Track Changes function if they wish; however they should take care not to reveal their identity through the comments (e.g. Track Changes should not reveal their name or initials). Needless to say, reviewers are not allowed to use the data or findings of a manuscript for their own use without proper permission.

Following receipt of the peer reviewer’s comments, the author will be asked to address these comments and resubmit the manuscript with a covering letter. The reviewer will then be sent the revised manuscript and covering letter and will be requested to check whether or not the author has sufficiently addressed their raised points.

Editorial Team’s Responsibility

The Editorial Team mainly conduct the administrative and contents functions of the journal, ensuring the quality of its contributions. All members of the team share the responsibility to ensure that the journal’s quality is maintained to a high level.

  • All submissions of manuscripts should be acknowledged within 72 hours.
  • All manuscripts will be converted to anonymous format before sending for review.
  • The reviewers’ comments will be sent to the author anonymously.
  • Quality of submission will be checked against the Guidelines for Submission.
  • Plagiarism will be thoroughly checked at several stages in the review process.
  • Appropriate communication between authors, reviewers and Editorial Team will be maintained.
  • Final decision for acceptance/rejection of a manuscript should be made within 14 days after the reviewers have submitted their review comments.
  • All major decisions and processes should be supervised by the Editor-in-Chief.
  • Book reviews and executive-experience sharing texts will not be peer reviewed; rather they will be reviewed by the Editorial Team itself.
  • The accepted manuscript will be proof-read by a member of the Editorial Team.
  • All finalised manuscripts will proceed to layout and then will be sent to the author for a final check.

The Editorial Board consists of scholars from different disciplines, both within and outside of XISS. Their responsibilities include helping identify referees/reviewers, acting as reviewers in the peer review process, providing suggestions for improving the quality of the journal, and from time-to-time making an objective evaluation of the journal.

Special issues: The Editorial Team may invite Guest Editors to address a theme, or scholars may approach the Editorial Team with a special issue in mind. Either way, the Guest Editors should themselves prepare a list of peer reviewers. The Guest Editors should submit their pre-selected papers to the Editorial Team, who will check the manuscripts before proceeding to the publication stage.

Cases of academic misconduct

If cases of plagiarism or other types of misconduct, e.g. falsification, fabrication, are suspected or detected, the Editor-in-Chief, Dr. (Fr.) Alex Ekka, S.J., should be contacted directly (at alexekka@yahoo.com). Evidence should be provided to support the concerns. JJDMS is committed to cooperate with any investigation and to respond to any questions regarding misconduct. JJDMS is prepared to issue retractions or corrections when provided with the findings of an investigation that prove misconduct has taken place.

The JJDMS Editorial Team
Ranchi, 28 March 2017

Sources consulted:
Future of Food Journal. Ethical policy. Retrieved from http://fofj.org/blog/?page_id=551
Wager E, & Kleinert, S. on behalf of COPE Council. (2012). Cooperation between research institutions and journals on research integrity cases: Guidance from the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). Retrieved from http://publicationethics.org/resources/guidelines-new/cooperation-between-research-institutions-and-journals-research-integrity