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Charter of Best Practices for the Journal

1. Objectives of the Charter

The Charter serves to ensure the credibility and extend the appeal of the Journal PISTES (Perspectives interdisciplinaires sur le travail et la santé). It displays the concern for fairness, rigour and transparency which motivates all its collaborators. The Charter is designed to guide the writing and facilitate the reading of scientific contributions. The contributions will effectively become standardized and rendered into a coherent whole in the process of selection, in turn facilitating their reading.

2. Difference between the types of contribution governed by the Charter and other contributions

Following the Charter guidelines is a requirement for all types of contributions subjected to an exacting peer review.

These consist of the following :

  • case studies ;

  • intervention or action research aimed at modifying a given worksite and then evaluating the effects ;

  • methodological and/or theoretical reflection papers concerned with professional practice

  • and the practice of research ;

  • articles on the lived experience of workers in the workplace, based primarily on their discourse.

For the selection of contributions not submitted to peer review, namely book reviews, the Charter guidelines are offered for reference purposes only. The selection process in these cases in no way precludes the use of an adapted guide or quite other model of evaluation.

3. Scope and main guidelines of the Journal

The Journal PISTES is characterized by these overarching principles :

  • Interdisciplinary : a great variety of disciplines allows of dialogue within a wide spectrum of social sciences and humanities, notably ergonomics, sociology, anthropology, psychology, industrial relations, economy, statistics, management sciences, philosophy, demographics and physiology.

  • Based on a rigorous scientific requirement : which informs the exacting selection of articles.

  • Open to the concerns of society, workers and enterprises : PISTES is a scientific journal dedicated to the social and human aspects of work from the vantage point of the health of persons and the well-functioning of organizations. It is interested particularly in innovative approaches to work and health, within a perspective of the development of people and improvement of business performance.

  • Publishes original and innovative content : the Journal PISTES publishes only original articles.

  • Principally francophone : to promote a dissemination of scientific work in French.

  • Multilingual : to give to a wider readership access to scientific scholarship, the Journal offers, for each article, abstracts in English and Spanish along with keywords in English, and in most cases Spanish. Certain articles are available in their entirety in French and in English.

  • Solely in electronic form : the Journal PISTES has moved from its original home site – occupied since 1999 – to the Revues.org platform, a move which has allowed for an ever-increasing readership. PISTES is now one of the most consulted among the more than 400 journals already on this platform. Moreover, from being read essentially by francophone countries, it has garnered a readership in the Ukraine, Russia, China and Germany, all of which helps to solidify the dissemination of scientific work in French.

  • Nothing but free access : because we think knowledge is a common good.

4. Article selection process

The selection process is set out below :

1) Process of selection and assessment of quality of the scientific contributions with respect to scientific norms and to advancement of knowledge in the domain ;

2) Account of the rigour involved in the choice of themes and of those responsible for thematic issues of the Journal.

NOTE : All scientific contributions submitted receive an assessment by at least two peers, given anonymously. For full transparency, the precise evaluative criteria used by the expert evaluators are to be found in Section 5 : Article Evaluation Criteria.

4.1 Process of selection and assessment of the articles submitted

Each article submitted is the responsibility of one member of the Editorial Board or of the International Scientific Committee, who undertakes to have it evaluated by two peers, experts in the field, functioning anonymously.

Any evaluator who understands him/herself to be unqualified to evaluate a manuscript is obliged to let the Editorial Board know and to recuse him/herself.

The submitted articles will be assessed on their conformity with the Journal’s editorial policy. They may employ a variety of methods and approaches, may broach theoretical and/or methodological questions, and should bring a substantial new contribution on the theoretical or empirical front.

At this point, the editor responsible for the article’s assessment process makes a synthesis of the evaluations. This is sent to the authors so that they may make corrections/modifications or lend precision as directed by the expert evaluators.

The journal undertakes to furnish a response to every submission.

Where modifications are asked for, the authors have a certain timeline for submitting their amendments. In each case, the authors and evaluators will come to a common understanding of the deadline, based on the nature and quantity of the alterations demanded.

In the case of a refusal, the Editorial Board may suggest some desired modifications to be made before a fresh submission of the article.

Finally, the reworked articles are perused by the Editorial Board members, who will pronounce on the receivability of the article for publication and, more generally speaking, on the content of the issue which will include it. If there are difficulties, it can sometimes happen that the Editorial Board or the one taking charge of the article asks advice of another expert to help in the decision or even to require further precisions on the part of the author. The selection process can take up to 6 to 12 months.

The articles accepted for publication undergo a linguistic revision before they appear ; the same is true for abstracts in English and in Spanish.

The Journal PISTES undertakes not to assign evaluation to an author who has submitted an article due to appear in the same issue. The exception will be thematic issues. Given the restrained pool of experts in a thematic field, the Journal may find itself having to assign evaluation to an author submitting a scientific contribution at the same time to the same issue. But given that the Journal is online, no consideration of limit to the number of articles applies ; the authors and the evaluators are thus not in competition in this sense. Peer review remains anonymous in every case : both regular issues and thematic issues.

The Journal PISTES shall avoid all conflict of interest between authors, evaluators, and Editorial Board members or members of the Scientific Committee or the Steering Committee.

4.2 Rigour in the selection process of themes, editorial experts in charge of the thematic issues, and articles

Honouring the complexity of the themes covered, those scientific contributions accepted will be of diverse kinds and their authors will need to justify their conclusions.

Several themes explored result from themed symposia or thematic elements in international scientific conferences. The Journal ensures thereby that its theme issues are current, cutting edge, and endorsed by such reliable entities as the scientific committees responsible for the programming of such conferences.

For every thematic issue, a brace of invited editors is engaged, mostly from among the organizers of the scientific conference event in question. They, then, oversee all the usual aspects of bringing out an issue : identification of potential authors, deadline for receipt of articles, handling of the articles and their evaluation. Theme issues are subject to the same rigorous assessment procedure as regular issues.

The Editorial Board is deeply involved in supporting the work of the invited editors. It approves, for instance, the choice of evaluators, possibly helping identify them, a not insignificant challenge for a thematic issue when the specificity of the subject matter or the collaboration of many writers in the field limits the available pool. The invited editors have international recognition for their scientific output in the domain of the issue’s theme.

5. Article evaluation criteria

The following is a list of various criteria taken into account by the peer reviewers.

1. Introduction : theme, relevance, theoretical framework, originality, context

Evaluation Criteria :

  • Clear research question, clear problematic

  • Well-defined objectives

  • Thorough and up-to-date review of the literature

  • Allows of locating the contribution the article will make to the advancement of knowledge

  • Introduces the theoretical framework (if relevant)

  • Adequate definition of terms (if relevant)

2. Methodological approach

Evaluation Criteria :

  • Rigour and relevance, choice of method befitting the research question (qualitative/quantitative)

  • Sampling : criteria, number of cases, characteristics of the subjects

  • Collection of data : tools, conditions/context of the study, duration of inquiry or observation

  • Analytical procedures and techniques, validity criteria

3. The main text

Evaluation Criteria :

Results

  • Presentation of the results with a clear bearing on the research question

  • Clarity of presentation, including number of actors and respondents and type of analysis used

  • Visual aids, tables as necessary (quantitative), citations (qualitative)

Discussion

  • Synthesis of the results with respect to the research question

  • Discussion of the results with respect to the scientific literature

  • Contribution to the advancement of knowledge, new hypotheses

  • Extent and limits, possibility of application elsewhere

6. Copyright, content originality, plagiarism and reproduction

The intellectual property and copyright on the original content of all scientific contributions shall remain with the authors. The authors grant, in exchange for publication in the Journal PISTES, exclusive licence of first publication giving the Journal the right to produce and disseminate the contributions, whether collectively with other articles or individually, and in all media forms known or to come.

The authors shall guarantee the originality of their material and publish no text that would appear to contravene, in any way, the definition of this as given in the Code de la propriété intellectuelle (intellectual property code).

Plagiarism and false or intentionally misleading declarations constitute behaviour at odds with the ethics of scientific publication ; they are unacceptable.

No significant part of the article shall have been previously published either as an article or as a chapter, or be under consideration for publication elsewhere.

Reproduction of extracts of publications is possible provided that the authors cite their source and have obtained explicit permission of the rights holders, which permission shall not be unduly withheld. Reference must be given to the title of the article, the journal, the author(s), date and place of publication. The Journal reserves the right to apply reproduction rights.

7. Multiple, redundant, simultaneous or repeat publications

The authors shall refrain from submitting an article already published elsewhere, or a new article founded entirely on work already published.

Likewise, the authors shall not make multiple submissions.

Further, the Journal reserves to itself the right to publish in-house publications, and scientific contributions already published and still relevant. For example, some scientific contributions already published have again been published through an agreement between the Journal PISTES and the Portuguese Journal Laboreal. The already published articles were translated and freshly published in the partnering journal.

8. Conflict of interest

Members of the Editorial Board and evaluators shall recuse themselves in the case of any conflict of interest over an author or authors, or over the content of a manuscript for evaluation.

The Journal PISTES shall avoid all conflict of interest between authors, evaluators, and Editorial Board members or members of the Scientific Committee or the Steering Committee.

9. Policy of confidentiality

The names of authors, evaluators and collaborators along with the names of their organizations or institutional affiliations, which the Journal may gather in the course of its operations, shall remain confidential and shall not be used for any commercial or public ends beyond the signature of the articles published. However, this information may sometimes be required by governmental grant-giving bodies. The anonymity of the peer review selection shall be maintained when transmitting this information. A list of the names of authors, evaluators and collaborators and the names of their organizations or institutional affiliations shall be sent with no overt links between those named.

The Journal may use these lists for its own purposes of soliciting articles, collaborations or other contributions, notably by the occasional electronic mailing. In the same way it will flag forthcoming issues. Anyone wishing not to receive these emails may simply ask to be removed from the list.

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