Policy on Corrections and Peer Review Appeals

Corrections policy

We follow the STM Association guidelines that “Articles that have been published should remain extant, exact, and unaltered to the maximum extent possible”. Necessary corrections will be made to published articles however as authorized by the Editors of the journal. Any necessary changes will be accompanied with a post-publication notice which will be permanently linked to the original article so that readers will be fully informed of any necessary changes. The Editors will decide the magnitude and the nature of the errors, and decide on corrective actions accordingly.

Minor corrections will be made directly to the original article (such as minor layout changes/fixes, typos or grammatical issue that do not affect the content or meaning).

Major corrections will be dealt with as follows:

  • Erratum (a statement by the authors of the original paper that briefly describes the correction(s) resulting from errors or omissions) – This is used for errors introduced by the publisher that affects the integrity of the article, the reputation of the authors, or the reputation of journal. Hence, the corrected article is not removed, but a notice of erratum is given.
  • Addendum (notification of additional information to an article) – This is published when the Editors decide that an addendum is necessary for the readers’ understanding of a significant part of the published paper. An addendum does not contradict the original publication, but if the author omitted significant information available at the time, this material can be added in this way.
  • Retraction (notice that the paper should not be regarded as part of the scientific literature) – This is used if there is clear evidence that the published findings are unreliable, which may be the result of misconduct or an honest error. The published article is not removed from the online journal, but notice of retraction is given as well as the reason for the action and who is responsible for the decision.
  • Corrigendum (notification of a significant error made by the authors of the article) – This is used when an important error is made by the author(s) that affects the publication record or the scientific integrity of the paper, or the reputation of the authors or the journal. All decisions on corrigenda are made by the Editors.

Peer review appeals and author complaints

We follow the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) guidelines on appeals to editorial decisions and complaints about the management of the peer review process.

The editors don’t expect frequent appeals and rarely reverse the original decisions. The decision to reject a manuscript will often involve the editor’s judgment of priority/ importance/relevance. These are things which authors usually cannot address through an appeal. However, if you believe that there is a case to be made for a genuine appeal please submit an appeal letter to the editorial office detailing the basis for the appeal. Should you as an author wish to comment on aspects of the journal’s editorial management, you are welcome to submit such a comment to the editorial office.