Ethics & Malpractice Statement

Presented to the Editorial Board of the Journal of Rural Social Sciences and Board of Directors of the Southern Rural Sociological Association.

The following points are informed by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE, see www.publicationethics.org), combined with historical and contemporary practice for JRSS and existing editorial policies (https://egrove.olemiss.edu/jrss/policies.html).

Duties and Responsibilities of Editors

  • Making final determination of what is published in the journal
  • Considering the needs of authors, readers, and the broader public for reputable outlets for social science research
  • Emphasizing the importance of freedom of expression, integrity in the social scientific enterprise, transparency, and avoiding conflicts of interest
  • Addressing any needed corrections, clarifications, retractions, and apologies, as needed
  • Determining whether to accept or reject manuscripts based on fit with the journal’s aims and scope combined with feedback from peer-reviewers on social scientific merit, contribution to advancing knowledge, and quality of writing
  • Seeking continuity in communication with authors and publishing decisions as editorial officers change
  • Articulating and managing the peer-review process in a manner that protects both authors and reviewers as part of the double-blind process
  • Although managed in the same manner as general submissions, one unique exception is that presidential addresses are reviewed specifically by previous presidents of the SRSA.
  • Responding to requests for information and complaints in a timely manner
  • Taking major concerns and appeals from authors, reviewers, or editors in a timely manner to the SRSA board of directors whereby a special committee will be established by the board, consisting of a board member and two members of JRSS editorial board to consider appeals and make a ruling on the matter
  • The special committee’s process is to be informed by this document, the JRSS policies, and appropriate flow chart recommendations from COPE (https://publicationethics.org/guidance/Flowcharts)
  • The Editorial Office will be responsible for tracking and managing follow-up on rulings made by the special committees, such as: requiring statements for corrections, clarifications, retractions, and apologies, and extreme circumstances, banning authors, reviewers, or editors from further involvement with JRSS for a specified period of time.

Duties and Responsibilities of Authors

  • Submitting original manuscripts not under-review elsewhere to be considered for publication, provided the author owns the copyright to the work being submitted or is authorized by the copyright owner or owners to submit the article
  • Adhering to ethical practices, including Institutional Review Board (IRB) requirements, in research and presentation of research, and clearly stating IRB approval or exemption ruling for applicable research
  • Providing clear, concise, and accurate descriptions of research methods, procedures, and limitations
  • Editing initial and subsequent submissions to protect the peer-review process, using practices such as removing any identifying information and self-citations to previous work until approved by editor
  • Responding in a timely manner to reviewer and editorial feedback
  • Reading and adhering to JRSS submission rules, formatting requirements, ethics and malpractice statement, and copyright restrictions
  • Providing any needed updates to the Editorial Office concerning needed corrections, clarifications, retractions, and apologies, as needed
  • Raising any issues of potential misconduct with the Editorial Office

Duties and Responsibilities of Reviewers

  • Notifying the Editorial Office on any potential conflicts of interest
  • Protecting the peer-review process, including the confidentiality of information
  • Providing fair and balanced review of the manuscript with an emphasis on fit with the journal’s aims and scope combined with social scientific merit, contributions to knowledge, and quality of writing
  • Responding to review requests within the specified period of time
  • Raising any issues of potential misconduct with the Editorial Office