Editorial Removal Policy

The UJPR is dedicated to advancing medical and biological knowledge through the publication of high-quality, peer-reviewed research. Recognizing the pivotal role of the Editorial Board in upholding the journal’s standards, this Editorial Board Member Removal Policy has been meticulously crafted to provide a transparent and fair framework for addressing instances that may necessitate the removal of an Editorial Board member.

Purpose of the Editorial Board Member Removal Policy

The primary purpose of this policy is to outline the procedures and criteria for the potential removal of Editorial Board members, ensuring that such actions are taken with careful consideration and adherence to ethical and professional standards. The policy addresses various grounds for removal, including ethical misconduct, non-performance, professional misconduct, and, notably, involvement with predatory journals and publishers.

Grounds for Removal

Ethical Misconduct

Plagiarism: Any proven instance of plagiarism by an Editorial Board member is considered a serious breach of ethical standards. Plagiarism undermines the integrity of the journal and the broader academic community, warranting immediate removal.

Conflict of Interest: Editorial Board members are expected to disclose and manage conflicts of interest to maintain the impartiality of the editorial process. Failure to do so may result in removal to safeguard the journal’s objectivity.

Breach of Confidentiality: Unauthorized disclosure of confidential information related to submitted manuscripts or editorial discussions is strictly prohibited. A breach of confidentiality may lead to removal, emphasizing the importance of maintaining the integrity of the peer-review process.

Non-Performance

Failure to Fulfill Responsibilities: Editorial Board members are integral to the manuscript review process and editorial decision-making. Persistent failure to fulfill these responsibilities may be grounds for removal to maintain the efficiency and quality of the editorial process.

Violation of Journal Policies: Repeated violation of the journal’s policies, encompassing peer review, ethical standards, and conflicts of interest, may result in removal. Adherence to established policies is crucial for preserving the journal’s credibility.

Professional Misconduct

Unprofessional Behavior: Conduct unbecoming of an Editorial Board member, including harassment, discrimination, or any form of inappropriate behavior, may result in removal. A professional and respectful environment is essential for the success of the editorial process.

Misuse of Position: Any misuse of the editorial position for personal gain or to advance personal agendas is strictly prohibited and may lead to removal. Editorial roles are to be exercised in the best interests of the journal and the scientific community.

Involvement with Predatory Journals and Publishers

Definition and Rationale: Predatory journals and publishers engage in deceptive practices, exploiting the academic publishing system. Editorial Board members associated with such entities pose a significant risk to the integrity of scholarly publishing and may compromise the reputation of UJPR.

Criteria for Assessment: Editorial Board members will be evaluated for any affiliation, collaboration, or association with known predatory journals or publishers. This includes serving on editorial boards, contributing articles, or participating in conferences organized by predatory entities.

Implications and Consequences: Involvement with predatory journals or publishers is a serious violation of ethical standards. Such involvement may lead to the removal of the Editorial Board member. This decision is rooted in the commitment to maintaining the highest standards of ethical publishing and safeguarding the reputation of UJPR.

Removal Procedures

Initial Investigation

Complaint Submission: Any party, including Editorial Board members, authors, or staff, may submit a formal complaint against an Editorial Board member to the Editor-in-Chief. This open mechanism ensures that concerns are addressed promptly.

Preliminary Assessment: The Editor-in-Chief will conduct a preliminary assessment of the complaint to determine its merit. If the complaint is deemed credible, a formal investigation will be initiated. This step is crucial for filtering out frivolous complaints.

Formal Investigation

Appointment of Investigation Committee: An Investigation Committee, comprising impartial members of the Editorial Board, will be appointed to conduct a thorough investigation. The committee ensures objectivity and fairness in assessing the allegations.

Opportunity to Respond: The accused Editorial Board member will be provided with a fair opportunity to respond to the allegations and present any evidence in their defense. This step ensures due process and considers all perspectives.

Evidence Gathering: The Investigation Committee will collect and review all relevant evidence, including correspondence, reviews, and other documentation. This rigorous process is essential for a comprehensive and informed decision.

Decision-Making

Committee Deliberation: The Investigation Committee will deliberate on the evidence and make a recommendation to the Editor-in-Chief. The committee’s collective judgment ensures a well-rounded assessment of the situation.

Editor-in-Chief Decision: The Editor-in-Chief will make the final decision based on the Investigation Committee’s recommendation. The decision may involve disciplinary actions, corrective measures, or removal, depending on the severity of the violation.

Notification and Appeals

Notification of Decision: The accused Editorial Board member will be promptly notified of the decision. Transparency in communication is crucial to ensure accountability and maintain trust in the editorial process.

Appeals Process: An appeals process will be established to allow the accused party to appeal the decision if they believe it was unjust. The appeals process provides a mechanism for reconsideration and fairness.

Repercussions and Replacements

Repercussions

Immediate Actions: Depending on the severity of the violation, the removal may be effective immediately to mitigate any ongoing harm to the journal’s reputation. Immediate actions emphasize the urgency of addressing serious misconduct.

Publication of Misconduct: Instances of removal related to ethical or professional misconduct may be publicly disclosed, maintaining transparency and holding individuals accountable for their actions. This publication serves as a deterrent to potential misconduct.

Replacement Procedures

Interim Appointments: In the event of an Editorial Board member’s removal, an interim appointment may be made to ensure continuity in the editorial process. This appointment will be made based on considerations of expertise, diversity, and alignment with journal goals.

Permanent Replacement: The permanent replacement of the removed Editorial Board member will follow a rigorous nomination and selection process outlined in the Editorial Recruitment Policy. This process ensures that new appointments maintain the high standards set by UJPR.

Continuous Improvement

Policy Review

Regular Review: This Editorial Board Member Removal Policy will undergo regular reviews to ensure its effectiveness and relevance. Reviews will consider changes in the scholarly publishing landscape and emerging best practices.

Stakeholder Feedback: Feedback from stakeholders, including Editorial Board members, authors, and readers, will be actively sought during policy reviews. Involving stakeholders ensures that the policy reflects the evolving needs and expectations of the academic community.