General rules of reviewing
Manuscripts of scientific content must undergo the procedure of pre–publication examination - review. Such manuscripts include:
- all types of research articles;
- all types of review articles (including systematic and analytical reviews);
- In the pre-publication examination, the journal uses the double-blind review method: the author does not know who is reviewing it, the reviewer does not know whom he is reviewing. The manuscript is subject to examination only in an anonymous (impersonal) presentation.
- The initiator of the examination is only the editor of the journal - the editor-in-chief or the scientific (thematic) editor. The scientific editor appoints two reviewers initially. In controversial cases, an additional third reviewer may be involved.
- Well-known, recognized specialists in their professional communities who have published in topics relevant to the reviewed manuscript over the past five years are involved in the review.
- Both internal experts from the editorial board of the journal and external independent researchers can act as reviewers.
- If there is a conflict of interest, for example, the reviewer and the reviewed author are affiliated to the same organization, are colleagues, work together at the same department, in the same laboratory or research center, at the same faculty, or participants in the same research project, some of the results of which are presented in the manuscript proposed for review, the reviewer is obliged to notify the scientific editor and the editorial board in the person of the editor-in-chief and refuse to conduct an examination of the manuscript.
- The reviewer should be polite to the author, the text of the review should be constructive. Criticism of the personality is not allowed.
Based on the results of the examination, the reviewer recommends, and the scientific editor makes one of the following possible decisions:
- "submit for revision, taking into account the comments of the reviewers";
- In case of inconsistent evaluation of the article by reviewers, the final decision is made by the chief or scientific editor.
- The author receives the text of his manuscript with comments, comments, recommendations of reviewers in an anonymous (depersonalized) form, as well as mandatory notification of the decision of the scientific editor.
- The standard review period is 30 days from the moment the manuscript is assigned to the reviewer. The total review period, taking into account the "minimum" revision and re-review, is 35-40 days. The total review period, taking into account the "significant" revision and re-review, is 40-45 days.
- The review represents a certain (critical) genre of scientific literature. The Copyright Agreement concluded between the author of the article and the Copyright Holder contains a clause on the receipt by the editorial board of the journal of exclusive rights to review in order to reproduce, transmit, distribute or use the review in another way. The copyright agreement is free of charge for both parties.
- All reviewers work on a voluntary basis, without additional remuneration.
- Reviews are kept in the publishing house and in the editorial office of the publication for 5 years.
- The editor-in-chief and scientific editors are responsible for the implementation of the review policy of the journal. The editor-in-chief, scientific editors, reviewers and authors are responsible for the quality of published works.
- The editorial board undertakes to send copies of the reviews to the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation upon receipt of a corresponding request to the editorial office of the publication.
- All manuscripts are submitted to the editorial office of the journal only through the manuscript submission interface in the editorial and publishing system.
The general procedure for evaluating and reviewing a manuscript
Each received manuscript goes through several stages of examination and evaluation before publication.
Each new manuscript is reviewed by the scientific editor at the entrance and determines its compliance with the general formal requirements, in particular, the following "entry" points:
- (1) The subject matter of the journal;
- (2) genre and type of published work;
- (3) the correctness of the design of the text of the manuscript, the quality of the preparation of illustrative material, etc.;
- (4) literacy, clarity and logic of the presentation of the text in accordance with the norms of the literary language;
- (5) availability of all necessary metadata in Russian and English.
The scientific editor sends for revision manuscripts that do not meet the requirements of the journal. If the author has finalized the article in accordance with the Guidelines for the design of articles adopted in the journal, corrected errors and submitted all necessary metadata in Russian and English, the article is accepted and sent for further examination.
All manuscripts with scientific content – research and review articles that have passed the 1st stage are checked for the originality of the text, the presence of incorrect borrowings. Verification is carried out through the software tools of the Antiplagiat company. The scientific editor analyzes the results in detail and makes a final decision on the level of originality of the text and the presence or absence of plagiarism in the manuscript.
Manuscripts that have not passed through the "Anti-Plagiarism" do not enter the next stages of the examination.
The scientific editor submits the manuscript, which has passed the 1st and 2nd stages of preliminary examination, for expert evaluation to two reviewers who are recognized in the professional community as active specialists in the thematic field relevant to the reviewed work.
Before sending the manuscript for review, it is anonymized (affiliation, information about the authors, links to the author's own works in the text and in the bibliographic list are deleted). In case of deanonymization of the author by the reviewer, the latter must immediately inform the scientific editor and the editorial board about this fact in order to prevent a possible conflict of interest. A conflict of interest may be caused by personal relationships, beliefs and scientific rivalry, that is, factors that prevent an impartial analysis of the contents of the manuscript from making an objective decision on the publication of research results.
Review: rules of compilation
The text with the results of the examination of the contents of the manuscript is submitted by the reviewer on the review form, which, in addition to answering the questions posed, also assumes a description of the shortcomings and advantages of the manuscript in free form. The free form allows the reviewer to determine the scientific value and significance of the reviewed manuscript in an arbitrary sequence and degree of detail.
The review may begin with a brief summary of the reviewed manuscript. The summary will help the scientific editor and the author to understand whether the reviewer understood the article correctly. Otherwise, the text of the review may be based on an ambiguous or even false interpretation of the text of the reviewed work.
After the summary, the Reviewer evaluates the content of the manuscript according to the following criteria:
- relevance of the topic;
- the novelty of the research;
- academic objectivity;
- correctness, reliability and verifiability of the results obtained;
- depth of research and completeness of presentation of the material;
- assessment of the probability of practical use of the results obtained;
- assessment of the prospects for further research in this area.
The review contains the following provisions in a reasoned form:
- positive qualities of the work – both the study itself and the text describing the study;
- shortcomings in the work as such, and in the text of the manuscript;
- characteristics of the style of presentation of the article and the conclusions obtained;
- historiographical coverage and completeness of the use of the array of previous scientific literature;
- comments, suggestions and comments on the revision of the text of the manuscript, if the reviewer intends to recommend the manuscript for publication;
- final evaluation of the work and recommendation to publish or reject the manuscript according to the criteria:
The review ends with final recommendations, which are formulated on the review form for the reviewer to choose in the form of one of the following suggestions:
- (1) Publication of the manuscript without additional revision.
- (2) Publication of the manuscript after minor revision, which can be carried out by the author and without repeated review.
- (3) Publication of the manuscript after significant revision, which requires mandatory additional review.
- (4) Rejection of the manuscript due to significant and irrecoverable defects.
The reviewer does not devote time to literary editing of the manuscript, but focuses on the scientific quality of the manuscript and the general style of presentation, which should correspond to the best examples of clear and concise academic writing. If the reviewer finds that the manuscript requires linguistic editing, he informs the scientific or literary editor about it. In case of disagreement between the reviewers in the evaluation of the manuscript, the final decision is made by the scientific editor or the editor-in-chief.
If the opinions of the reviewers on the same manuscript differ, then a third reviewer is involved in the examination process to make an objective decision on the publication or rejection of the article.
The author is obliged to listen to the opinion of the reviewers. In case of disagreement, the author has the right to send a letter to the editorial board of the journal with a reasoned justification of his position. The editorial board, in turn, has the right to take the side of the reviewer or the author. Upon completion of the review and making a final decision on the publication or rejection of the manuscript, the scientific editor should offer the reviewers the following opportunities related to the procedures of open science and translation of review texts as (a) a special form of scientific publication; (b) reviews as a specific element of scientific communication and (c) reviews as a significant part of the overall text of science:
- publication of the review text in the national analytical and bibliographic system "Russian Science Citation Index" on the platform elibrary.ru with an indication of authorship
The ethics of the reviewer and his moral obligations
Peer review is the most important component of the scientific communication system, the main tool that formalizes the procedure for recognizing a new scientific result in the academic community. For the author, reviewing is the only means to confirm the achievement of a new scientific result and to assign priority to the author. All scientists are readers and authors at the same time. And the opportunities for scientists to publish their own works are realized thanks to their participation in reviewing the manuscripts of colleagues.
A reviewer who realizes that he is not competent enough, or he does not have the qualifications or professional experience to examine a manuscript, or that he does not have enough time for reviewing, in any of these cases, must promptly contact the scientific editor and the editorial board in the person of the editor-in-chief with a request to release him from reviewing a particular manuscript.
The manuscript of the scientific work that the expert reviews should be considered exclusively as a confidential document. The text of the manuscript should absolutely not be discussed with outsiders who are not related to the work of the journal.
The reviewer is obliged to give only an objective assessment of the text of the manuscript. Personal criticism of the author is unacceptable. The reviewer must clearly and reasonably express his opinion.
The reviewer should pay special attention to the problems with the lists of references presented in the manuscripts. Any conclusion, argument, statement that appeared in science earlier, which means that it has already been published in a previous source, if such a statement occurs in the text of the manuscript, there must be an appropriate bibliographic reference to it.
If, during the study of the manuscript, the reviewer discovers significant similarities, textual proximity or even complete textual coincidences between the manuscript he is reviewing and any other previously published work, he is obliged to draw the attention of the scientific editor to these facts of borrowing.
Any conclusion, argument, statement that appeared in science earlier than the peer-reviewed work, that is, already published in a previous primary source work, must be confirmed through mandatory citation, that is, a bibliographic reference to this primary source.
Experts are strictly prohibited from reviewing manuscripts in the event of a conflict of interest in the form of scientific competition or, conversely, in the case of participation in joint scientific projects with the reviewed author or with an organization with which the reviewed author is affiliated.