Authors must promptly correct research found to be inaccurate or misleading.
Read on to see how you can ensure your paper passes our quality and ethical standards checks.
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How does F1000 safeguard research integrity?
Before accepting a paper for publication, our Editorial team diligently checks every submitted article to ensure it meets our quality and ethical standards. The F1000 ethical publishing checks include (but are not limited to) the following criteria:
Competing interests statement
Clinical trial registration
F1000 may choose not to proceed with publication at any time or to remove the content following publication if there are ethical concerns with the article.
What is the Committee of Publication Ethics (COPE)?
The Committee of Publication Ethics (COPE) is a well-established group that brings together all those involved in scholarly research and its publication. COPE provides guidance to enable publishers to reach the highest standards in publication ethics.
All F1000 publishing venues follow COPE guidance, including their ten core practices, to show that we follow industry standards relating to ethical publishing.
F1000 ethical publishing checks
All articles submitted must be original. The work, or large parts of it, must not have been published previously or be currently under consideration or review elsewhere.
Our Editorial team will check for plagiarism. If clear plagiarism (including self-plagiarism) is identified, the article will be rejected. For this reason, we also strongly discourage excessive or inappropriate self-citation.
If there is any significant overlap with another paper, this must be cited in the article and mentioned on submission. If an article has previously been posted on a preprint server, this must also be disclosed during submission.
Submitted articles with content that infringes a copyright may be rejected if the problematic sections cannot be removed.
Those who wish to reproduce a figure or table from a previous copyrighted publication are responsible for obtaining the permission of copyright holders and for referencing the original source.
Figures that were previously published under a creative commons license may be reused under the condition of the specific license.
Competing interests statement
You must include a ‘Competing interests’ statement. Competing interests can be financial or non-financial. Examples of competing interests include (but are not limited to) official affiliations and memberships with interest groups relating to the content of the publication.
If there are no competing interests to declare, the following standard statement is added: ‘No competing interests were disclosed’.
Reviewers are also required to declare any competing interests in their reports, as are readers who contribute comments on the site.
Clinical trial registration
Trials should be registered before patient recruitment starts, and the trial registration number and registration date must be included in the article. We will consider retrospectively registered trials, where an explanation for the late registration is provided in the article.
F1000 publishes all trial results. This includes research from abandoned or current clinical trials, irrespective of whether the outcomes were positive or negative, and trials of unapproved, uncleared, and unlicenced products to encourage debate about conducting and publishing clinical trials.
Research involving humans
Ethics approval must be obtained before the research is conducted. Retrospective approval can be hard to obtain, and it may not be possible to publish the study. As such, you must provide written approval from your ethics committee when submitting your research. Details of this approval must include the institution, review board name, and permit number(s).
Informed consent for publication
All F1000 publishing venues follow the Recommendations of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, that states, “Patients have a right to privacy that should not be infringed without informed consent. […] Informed consent for this purpose requires that the patient be shown the manuscript to be published. When informed consent has been obtained it should be indicated in the published article”.
Patient privacy and consent to participate in research
You also need to provide informed written consent from every study participant to confirm their consent to take part in the research. This must be stated in the article in a section entitled ‘Consent’. Where only oral consent was obtained (rather than written), you should include the reasons for obtaining oral consent, and a statement explaining how consent was documented in the Consent section.
Consent for publication of identifiable data
If the article contains any identifiable data, such as photographs of individuals, you must include an explicit statement from the patient, parent or guardian, confirming permission to publish. If the data has been anonymized and no consent for publication was required, then this should also be clearly stated, and a note should be added confirming that such alterations have not distorted scientific meaning.
Research involving animals
If your research involves animals, you must consult the ‘Animal Research: Reporting In Vivo Experiments’ (ARRIVE) 2.0 guidelines, developed by the NC3Rs.
At a minimum, articles reporting in vivo experiments must adhere to the ARRIVE Essential 10 checklist though we encourage you use the full ARRIVE 2.0 checklist. The relevant information outlined in these guidelines should be included in the appropriate section of the article.
Experiments involving vertebrates or regulated invertebrates must be carried out within the ethical guidelines provided by your institution and national or international regulations. Where applicable, a statement of ethics permission or animal licenses should be included. If animals were used but ethical approval was not required, a clear statement should be included stating why this approval was unnecessary.
In all cases, authors should include a statement to confirm that they made all efforts to reduce any animal suffering and detail how they achieved this.
The peer review process is a fundamental component of scholarly publishing, ensuring the quality and credibility of academic research. After submitting your manuscript to a publishing venue, it undergoes rigorous…