Today, nothing threatens the integrity of scientific research more seriously than the absence of code of conduct and ethical guidelines. It is the joint obligation of authors, editors, reviewers and publishers to adhere the ethical guidelines in letters and spirit to maintain the credibility and integrity of scientific record for our next generation. Ethical virtues are very precious, timeless and inevitable to ensure the right choices in ethical dilemmas thus leading to transparency and establishing/maintaining the professional standards. Keeping in view the importance of publication ethics, Higher Education Commission of Pakistan (HEC) has provided Ethical Guidelines for Journals and instructed its all recognized/accredited journals to adopt these guidelines with true essence. These guidelines describe in details the responsibility of authors, reviewers and editors related to HEC recognized/accredited and funded journals. Further in accordance with these guidelines, HEC does not like vanity/predatory press and fake journal websites and discourage such type of other unethical publishing practices.
As Pakistan Journal of Commerce and Social Sciences (PJCSS) is an HEC recognized/accredited journal and also fully funded by HEC, thats why it is obligatory for all stakeholders involved in the publishing of PJCSS to uphold the highest standards of ethics and take measures to identify, address and prevent the malpractices. Authors, editors and reviewers of PJCSS are responsible to follow and enforce these ethical guidelines:
1) Ethical Guidelines for Authors (issued by HEC)
Originality and Plagiarism
Multiple, Redundant and Current Publication
Acknowledgment of Sources
Authorship of the Work
Others who have participated in certain substantive aspect of the research should be acknowledged for their contribution in an “Acknowledgement” section.
Privacy of Participants
Data Access and Retention
Disclosure and Conflicts of Interest
Authors may have to sign an agreement allowing the journal to reserve the right to circulate the article and all other derivative works such as translations.
Manuscript Acceptance and Rejection
2) Ethical Guidelines for Editors (issued by HEC)
Editor of a research journal should be responsible for:
Good practices for their job would include to:
I. Formation of Editorial Board
II. Fair play and Impartiality
IV. Editing and Formatting Guidelines
V. Review Process
VI. Dealing with Misconduct
VIII. Conflict of Interest
X. Publication Decisions
XI. Establishing a Procedure for Appeal
3) Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers (issued by HEC)
Suitability and Promptness
Peer reviewers should:
Standards of Objectivity
Disclosure and Conflict of Interest
For evaluating originality, peer reviewers should consider the following elements:
If the layout and format of the paper is not per prescribed one, the reviewers should discuss it with the editor or should include this observation in his/her review report. On the other side, if the research paper is exceptionally well, the reviewer may overlook the formatting issues. Other times, reviewers may suggest restructuring the paper before publication. The following elements should be carefully evaluated:
Above guidelines for authors, editors and reviewers is also available on official website of Higher Education Commission of Pakistan (HEC).