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Publication ethics and malpractice statement

The journal Métropoles is committed to comply with internationally recognised standards for scientific publishing as well as to implement all possible measures against publication malpractices. In this way, the journal ensures the integrity of the construction and dissemination of scientific knowledge. The aim is to ensure that what is published is accurate and produced in accordance with the ethical standards of the scientific community at every stage of the editorial process. These commitments are shared by all parties involved in the journal, namely the editors-in-chief, the members of the editorial board and the editorial team (section editors, editorial secretaries and website and scientific dissemination manager) as well as authors and reviewers of articles submitted to the journal.

Responsibilities of the Editors-in-Chief

The Editors-in-Chief are responsible for considering all proposals for scientific articles submitted to the journal, provided that they are original papers presenting studies carried out using methods generally accepted in the academic community, and dealing with a subject within the thematic scope of the journal.

The Editors-in-Chief are also responsible for deciding whether an article should be rejected or accepted for publication, following a double-blind review process. Their decisions are based on the reviewers' reports and are guided by the concern to ensure the scientific quality of the articles published in the journal.

The Editors-in-chief ensure that all material submitted to the journal remains confidential throughout the whole editorial process. No information about any submitted article is provided to third parties. The Editors-in-chief also ensure that authors’ and reviewers’ anonymity is preserved throughout the whole editorial process.

The Editors-in-Chief also ensure that there are no conflicts of interest in the editorial process and are committed to perform their editorial duties in a balanced, objective and fair manner.

The Editors-in-Chief also ensures that submitted manuscripts are evaluated for their intellectual content without any discrimination regarding gender, age, professional status, religious or political convictions or origin of the authors.

To ensure that no plagiarism occurs, the journal uses the anti-plagiarism software Compilatio.

Any deviation from ethical standards should be reported directly to the Editors-in-chief, who are committed to responding to misconduct and plagiarism as quickly as possible (corrections, retractions and apologies) in order to preserve the integrity of all stakeholders involved. Regardless of the date of publication, the Editors-in-chief investigates all allegations of error or misconduct, giving a voice to all parties involved. Documentation associated with complaints is retained. The Editors-in-chief are committed to issuing corrections, clarifications, retractions and apologies where necessary (see below: actions following misconduct).

Responsibilities of the authors

Authors ensure that their paper submitted to Métropoles is an original manuscript, neither evaluated nor accepted for publication elsewhere (in another journal or book). Authors thus confirm that the content of the submitted article is original. Where some of the content has been published elsewhere, authors are required to cite these sources.

Authors are responsible for citing any content reproduced from other sources, and for referencing all such sources in their bibliography. They also undertake to obtain permission to reproduce any content from other sources, where appropriate.

For manuscripts signed by more than one author, the authors assure that they all have actively participated in the development of the content of the article and that they all have approved the submitted version of the manuscript.

Authors undertake to keep the data associated with the submitted manuscript and to give access to these data, upon justified request from the Editors-in-chief.

Authors also undertake to respond to requests from the Editors-in-Chief as part of the peer review process within the timeframe specified by the Editors-in-Chief.

In case of suspected errors or misconduct, authors must respond to enquiries. They undertake to correct, retract and apologise if they are found guilty of unethical behaviour, including plagiarism or the use of fraudulent data.

Authors should promptly inform the Editors-in-chief if a significant error is found in their paper, such as a calculation error. They should then actively cooperate with the Editor-in-chief in order to publish a correction or withdraw the paper when deemed necessary by the Editor-in-chiefs.

Authors ensure that all studies involving human or animal subjects have been conducted in accordance with national, local and institutional laws and requirements. Where applicable, they certify with original documentation that approval was sought and obtained. Authors must obtain the express permission of human subjects and respect their privacy.

Authors must declare any potential conflict of interest at any stage of the publication process.

Responsibilities of the reviewers

Manuscripts submitted to Métropoles are reviewed in a double-blind manner: the authors do not know the identity of the reviewers, and vice versa. Each article is evaluated by at least two reviewers, one of whom is a member of the journal's editorial board, the other not. If the assessments of these two reviewers differ significantly, a third reviewer from the journal’s editorial board is asked to evaluate the paper.

The reviewers undertake to produce their evaluation in an objective and impartial manner. They undertake to express their remarks and criticisms clearly, using appropriate and explicit arguments. Ad hominem criticism is inappropriate.

Reviewers are committed to producing their review with the aim of assisting the Editors-in-Chief in making appropriate editorial decisions to ensure the scientific relevance and quality of articles published in the journal. They also endeavour to support the authors in improving the quality of the articles.

When a reviewer is asked to review a manuscript and does not feel qualified to do so, or anticipates that he or she will not be able to meet the deadline, he or she should inform the Editors-in-Chief and withdraw from the review process.

Reviewers are committed to the double-blind peer review process. Thus, all manuscripts received for review must be treated as confidential.

Reviewers should inform the Editors-in-Chief of any published or submitted content of which they are aware that is substantially similar to that being reviewed. They also have a duty to report to the Editors-in-Chief any similarities with published research and to draw attention to any identical text or part of a text that is not properly cited and referenced.

Reviewers must declare any conflicts of interest (financial, institutional, collaborative or otherwise) of which they are aware in relation to the articles submitted for review.

Actions following misconduct

Unethical behaviour can be brought to the attention of the Editors-in-chief at any time by anyone. Sufficient evidence must be provided for an investigation to be initiated.

The Editors-in-chief can initiate an investigation at any time. They are bound by strict confidentiality until the outcome of the investigation is confirmed.

All parties involved in alleged misconduct should be informed of the stages of the investigation and the possible consequences.

All parties must be given the opportunity to respond to any allegations.

Where misconduct is found, the following options may be considered:

  • informing the parties in case of misunderstanding or misinterpretation of the ethical charter and the publication rules;

  • sending an official letter detailing the infringement and warning the author against future abusive practices;

  • formal withdrawal of an article from the journal with appropriate apologies to the persons or institutions concerned;

  • embargo on any new manuscript submitted by the author for a defined period;

  • reporting the problem to the author's employer for further investigation and action;

  • informing a body with authority to deal with the complaint.

These different options can be combined depending on the severity of the situation.

A withdrawal notice should clearly identify the item being withdrawn and indicate who is withdrawing the item. Withdrawal notices should always state the reasons for the withdrawal, making every effort to distinguish between honest error (e.g. miscalculation) and misconduct (e.g. plagiarism or fabrication of fraudulent data).

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