Conflict of Interest

Authors

Where the manuscript reports on commercial software, hardware, or other products, authors must include a declaration at the beginning of the manuscript in which they must either state that no conflict of interest exists or describe the nature of any potential conflict. All sources of financial support for the research should also be disclosed in the manuscript.

All authors and co-authors must disclose any potential conflicts of interest (eg employment, consulting fees, research contracts, share ownership, patent licenses, consulting affiliations, etc.) when submitting their manuscripts. If the article is accepted for publication later, this information should be included in the last section.

Reviewers

Reviewers who have accepted manuscript assignments are normally expected to submit their reviews within one month. They should recuse themselves from the assignment if it becomes apparent to them at any stage that they do not possess the required expertise to perform the review, or that they may have a potential conflict of interest in performing the review (e.g., one resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships or connections with any of the authors, institutions, or companies associated with the manuscript).

Reviewers should contact the editorial office to report any potential conflict of interest prior to refereeing a manuscript. Minor conflicts do not disqualify a reviewer from writing a report on an article, but will be taken into account when evaluating the reviewers' recommendations.

Editors

Editors should not make any editorial decisions or be involved in the editorial process if they have any COI (financial or otherwise) for a submitted article.An editor may have COI in such cases if an article has been submitted from their academic department or institution; they should have clear policies to manage this.While editors submit their work to their journal, a colleague in the editorial office should manage the article and the editor/author should distance himself from discussions and decisions about the article.

Editors should choose a guest editor when there is a conflict of interest regarding an author. Editors should ensure that reviewers are free from conflicts of interest regarding an author.


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