Pakistan Journal of Social Sciences also works under the ethical policy and guidelines of HEC which have been developed keeping in view the COPE guidelines for the journal. Here are some key points:
Policy for the Editor(s):
1. Editor is wholly responsible to establish/maintain the quality of the journal.
2. He/She has full authority to accept or reject any research paper keeping in view the publishing policy of the Pakistan Journal of Social Sciences or the standard of the topic/ references/ material/ presentation/ language of the submitted paper and professional demands as well.
3. Editor is also responsible to make the corrections after placing contents online or in hard copies as well be reported by authors based on evidences at any time.
4. Editor ensures the process of blind peer review of every paper.
5. Editor ensures the Plagiarism Check of every paper and strictly follows the HEC Plagiarism Policy regarding this matter.
6. Editor is bound to follow the journal's policy without any institutional pressure.
7. Editor would provide corrigendum for any correction, clarification and apologies when required.
8. Editor may appoint Members of Editorial Board/ Advisory Board and change them anytime.
9. Editor ensures smooth functioning of the journal and conducting the editorial board meeting on regular basis.
10. Editor would disregard the discriminating factors, e.g. gender, race, ethnicity, religious belief, cultural sentiments, political affiliation, seniority and/or institutional association of the author(s) while selecting articles for publication.
11. Editor would try to promptly respond to the author (s) of the papers submitted for publishing, for any query.
12. Editor will not edit any submitted paper which would have any conflict of interest. He/She is responsible to ask the reviewers/evaluators also for disclosing any conflict of interest regarding the submitted research paper to ensure the impartiality.
13. Editor ensures the confidentiality of the content of manuscript prior to publishing at his and reviewer's end.
14. Editor is fully authorized to make the corrections even committed by the authors, editorial staff or on the online content regarding correction of authors name, their addresses etc on their requests at any time but with evidences.
Policy for the Author(s)
1. An author(principal) is a person who has significantly authored the research paper. One who has contributed at some extent or helped out the author in write up should not be the author.
2. Someone who has contributed particularly in any design, analysis etc. he/she can be credited as co-author.
3. Author would be fully responsible for the presented study.
4. It is the author(s)' responsibility to ensure that the research paper and data contain adequate detail and references to the sources of information in order to allow others to reproduce the results. Fraudulent or knowingly inaccurate statements constitute unethical behavior and are unacceptable.
5. Author(s) is required to provide an undertaking stating that the submitted manuscript contains solely his original work and no material has been copied without reference from anywhere. If someone coauthors the paper, then his contribution should be explicitly stated in that undertaking.
6. Article once submitted by the author to PJSS will not be submitted to any other journal till the time he would have been conveyed about rejection from our side. Concurrent submission of the same manuscript to more than one journal is unethical publishing behavior and is unacceptable.
7. If any question arises about the accuracy or validity of the research work during the review process, the author(s) should provide raw data to the Editor.
8. The author(s) should disclose any conflict of interest at the earliest possible stage keeping in view the editorial and advisory board, employment, consultancies, honoraria, patent applications/ registrations, grants or other funding.
9. Authors are supposed to allow the journal while submitting the paper to reserve the right to circulate the article.
10. Authors are supposed to bind with journal's policy when submitting a paper to PJSS
11. The review process can last between 1-3 months or longer and during this period the author(s) reserve the right to contact the Editor to ask about status of the review. In the case of rejection, the author(s) reserves the right to publish the article elsewhere. In case of revisions, the author(s) must provide an exposition of all corrections made in the manuscript. In case of dissatisfaction over the decision of rejection, the author can appeal the decision by contacting the Editor.
Policy for the Reviewer(s)
Review process allows author(s) improve their manuscript through editorial communications. Scholars/ Reviewers accepting to review a research paper have an ethical responsibility to complete this assignment professionally. The quality, credibility and reputation of a journal also depend on the peer review process. The peer review process depends on the trust, and demands that a reviewer is supposed to fulfill ethically. The reviewers should:
1. Immediately inform the editor if they do not have the subject expertise required to carry out the review.
2. Be responsible to act punctually and submit review report on time. They should immediately inform the editor of any possible delays.
3. The data included in the research paper is confidential and the reviewer is not allowed to use if for his/her personal study or any other academic or professional purpose.
4. Reviewers would consider the research paper as a confidential document. They must not discuss its content on any platform except in cases where professional advice is being sought with the authorization of the editor. They are bound not to disclose the details of any research paper prior to its publication without the prior approval of the editor.
5. A reviewer must declare any conflicting interests (e.g. personal, financial, intellectual, professional, political or religious). She/he should declare if the research paper under review is the same as to his/her presently conducted study.
6. A reviewer should be honest enough to declare if she/he is biased at any level towards the manuscript submitted.
7. The reviewer may justifiably criticize a manuscript but it would be inappropriate to resort to personal criticism on the author(s). He/she is supposed to objectively carry out the review with a consideration of high academic, scholarly and scientific standards.
8. Reviewer should have brought into the editor's notice, before writing the evaluation report, if the research paper is based on any previous research study or is replica of an earlier work, or the work is plagiarized. Moreover, if the reviewer suspects the given results to be untrue/unrealistic/fake, or there has been an indication of violating ethical norms in the treatment of human beings (e.g. children, female, poor people, disabled, elderly, etc.), all these points should also be identified to the editor.
9. For writing an evaluation report, reviewers are sent prescribed form(s) from the editor and they are supposed to share their comments on that form.
10. The editor will surely consider reviewer's comments and may send the paper to someone else for another opinion or send it back to the author(s) for revision before making the any decision. But it is very clear that the final decision about publishing a research paper (either accept or reject) will solely rest with the editor. A reviewer cannot challenge the decision of the editor at any forum.