Ethical Issues in Peer Review - Ethics of Peer Review A...

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Ethics of Peer Review: A Guide for Manuscript Reviewers Sara Rockwell, Ph.D. Departments of Therapeutic Radiology and Pharmacology, and Office of Scientific Affairs, Yale University School of Medicine, PO Box 208040, New Haven, CT 06510-8040 Abstract The peer review of scientific manuscripts is a cornerstone of modern science and medicine. Peer reviewed journals rely on expert and objective review by knowledgeable researchers to ensure the quality of the papers they publish. Moreover, the recommendations the reviewers make concerning publication and the advice they give to authors set the scientific standards of the discipline. In addition, their critiques set subtler standards of collegiality, behavior, and ethics, not only through their recommendations concerning which papers should be published and which should be rejected, but also through the tone and wording of their reviews and through the thought that they give to their scientific and ethical responsibilities as reviewers. The review of manuscripts for peer reviewed journals raises many ethical issues and problems. The reviewer should be aware of these when deciding whether to review a specific paper, throughout the process of handling the manuscript and writing the review, and even after the review is completed and submitted. This paper describes some of the ethical issues that can arise during the peer review process and discusses their implications. 1
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