PEER REVIEW PROCESS

Initial Preliminary Review

All manuscripts are processed using our Manuscript Tracking System. The Editor or Editorial Assistant determines whether the manuscript fits the journal’s focus and scope. Once we receive a manuscript, our Editorial Office runs a plagiarism check (using Grammarly, Turnitin or CrossCheck, powered by iThenticate) and screens the manuscript to decide whether or not it should be sent for peer review. It is therefore very important for authors to make sure that their manuscript is well written and is of high quality. During the initial screening, our Editorial Office mainly checks the following:

  1. Does the manuscript fit the journal’s scope?
  2. Is the content of the manuscript is good enough to make it worth reviewing?
  3. Is the manuscript compliant with the journal’s Instructions for Authors?
  4. Has the manuscript been submitted or published elsewhere?

Any manuscripts out of the journal’s scope or containing plagiarism, including self-plagiarism, are rejected. This step will take 3-5 days and an intimation is sent to the author whether the manuscript can be processed further or recommended to Language Service or rejected. Again, a Consent of the author will be sought to proceed further if author agrees to pay the Article Processing Charges (APC) on completion of Peer Review Process. In case, author is unable to pay the APC, he/she will be free to withdraw the manuscript at this stage, as it will not be possible to withdraw the manuscript once the manuscript goes into Peer Review Process.

Manuscripts not adhering to journal guidelines will be returned to authors without scientific evaluation. Submitted manuscripts adhering to journal guidelines are reviewed by the reviewers.

Single Blind Peer Review

After manuscripts clear the initial screening, they are sent to Editor-in-Chief. The Editor-in-Chief or Executive/Technical Editor assigns manuscripts to Handling Editor (usually member of the Editorial Board). The handling editor will send the manuscript to a minimum of 2 reviewers for single blind peer review. The peer review process is an essential element of the publication cycle. All manuscripts submitted to our journals will undergo extensive peer review by our reviewers. A mixed panel of reviewers is selected both from author’s suggestions and members of the Reviewers’ Board and the Editorial Board. Flow diagram in Figure 1 is the editorial workflow that all submitted manuscripts undergo.

Reviewers submit the evaluation results along with their recommendations as one of the following actions:

  • 1. Accept
  • 2. Minor Revision
  • 3. Major Revision
  • 4. Reject

We have a single blinded peer-review process in which the reviewers know who the authors of the manuscript are, but the authors do not have access to the information of who the peer reviewers are. Our journal acknowledges the researchers who have performed the peer-review and without the significant contributions made by these researchers, the publication of the journal would not be possible. We try our best to adhere to the guidelines laid out by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). We also forward the guidelines to our reviewers to ensure the highest ethical standards of evaluation.

The Reviewer Report (Comments) is an MS Word document, which is filled and commented. It contains title of the article but does not contain the identity details of the reviewer. Reviewer’s identity is kept anonymous. It is because Reviewers’ Report is shared with the author(s) for the purpose of improving their manuscript. This Reviewer’s Report can be uploaded in online system. Reviewers are given 2-3 weeks to write their review. In certain cases, extension can be granted upon request to the Reviewers.

Final Decision

In order for the Editor to provide a recommendation regarding the manuscript, at least 2 completed reviews are required. Once the reviewers have submitted their comments, the Editor will then arrange to send the article to the corresponding author along with Reviewers’ Reports and her/his own recommendation, if any. The Editor delivers and informs the author of the final decision too. If the manuscript is conditionally accepted, author(s) will be required to revise their manuscript according to the Editor’s suggestions and submit a revised version of their manuscript for further evaluation. Our Editorial Workflow allows Editors to reject manuscripts due to a number of reasons including inappropriateness of the subject, lack of quality, or incorrectness of the results. We ensure high quality and unbiased peer-review by sending the manuscript for evaluation to a range of reviewers in different parts of the world.

In all the cases ‘except rejection’, the author(s) are asked to pay the APC as specified or suggested by the journal.

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Figure 1: Review Process

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