Peer review process is an essential component of the scientific process. Reviews by independent scientists provide advice to the editorial board of JHS to choose best articles to publish. A double blind reviewing process is counducted.
JHS is international in authorship and in readership and referees are carefully selected from the worldwide academic community. Referees’ names are kept confidential and may only be disclosed to Editors who are also instructed to maintain confidentiality. Unbiased consideration is given to all manuscripts offered for publication regardless of the race, gender, religious belief, ethnic origin, citizenship, political philosophy, age or reputation of the authors.
Duties of Editors
- Publication decision
- Fair play
- Disclosure and Conflicts of interest
- Involvement and cooperation in investigations
Editor’s Declarations of Interest
JHS has asked its editors to provide brief statements on any interests which might be seen as having a potential bearing on the independence of their editorial evaluations. We have done so in the belief that such transparency is owed to our authors and readers, and is fair reciprocity for the requirement on declaration of interests which we put on authors, referees and book reviewers. Editorial staff is expected to distance themselves from any editorial decision-making where potential conflict of interest might be deemed to exist.
Choosing Peer Reviewers and Their Duties
Peer reviewers of JHS are chosen between experts in the scientific topic addressed in the articles. They are selected for their objectivity and scientific knowledge. All reviewers are informed of JHS’s expectations. They are expected to fill the evaluation form and prepare a separate report if necessary.
Any person who has a conflict of interest in the subject of the article cannot be a reviewer for that article. Reviewers should contact the editorial office to declare any potential conflicts of interest in advance of refereeing an article (e.g. being a co-worker or collaborator with one of the authors, or being in a position which precludes giving an objective opinion of the work, those working for a company whose product was tested, its competitors, those with special political or ideological agendas).
Reviews are expected to be professional, honest, courteous, prompt, and constructive. The desired major elements of a high-quality review are as follows:
- The reviewer should have identified and commented on the major strengths and weaknesses of the study design and methodology.
- The reviewer should comment accurately and constructively upon the quality of the author's interpretation of the data, including acknowledgment of its limitations.
- The reviewer should comment on the major strengths and weaknesses of the manuscript as a written communication, independent of the design, methodology, results, and interpretation of the study.
- The reviewer should comment on any ethical concerns raised by the study, or any possible evidence of low standards of scientific conduct.
- The reviewer should provide the author with useful suggestions for improvement of the manuscript.
- The reviewer's comments to the author should be constructive and professional.
- The review should provide the editor the proper context and perspective to make a decision on acceptance (and/or revision) of the manuscript.
- The reviewers are expected to point out relevant work that has not been cited, and use citations to explain where elements of the work have been previously reported. They should also note any substantial similarity between the manuscript and any paper published in or submitted to another journal.
- We request that reviewers do not contact authors directly. In most cases two reviewers will be consulted, but the opinion of these reviewers may not reflect the Co-Editor’s final decision on an article. Receiving partial advice from one referee can give authors a misleading impression of the peer review process.
Developing Review Process
The editors of JHS routinely assess all reviews for quality. Ratings of review quality and other performance characteristics of reviewers are periodically assessed to assure optimal journal performance. Performance measures such as review completion times should be used to assess changes in processing that might improve journal performance. Individual performance is kept confidential. The editors who do not contribute to the journal’s quality may be out listed.
In the review process, information and ideas obtained as a referee is kept confidential and not used for competitive advantage. The submitted manuscript is a privileged communication and should be kept confidential.
- The submitted manuscript should not be retained or copied by the reviewers. Also, reviewers must not share the manuscript with any colleagues without the explicit permission of the editor.
- Reviewers and editors must not make any personal or professional use of the data, arguments, or interpretations (other than those directly involved in its peer review) prior to publication unless they have the authors' specific permission or are writing an editorial or commentary to accompany the article.
- Reviewers must disclose any conflicts of interest and inform the editorial board.
- Reviewers must inform the journal if they are unable to review a paper or can do so only with
- Reviewers must objectively judge the quality of the research reported, give fair, frank and
constructive criticism and refrain from personal criticism of the authors. Comments made by referees may be seen by the authors. Therefore referees’ judgments should be explained and supported so that authors can understand the basis of the comments and judgments.
- If reviewers suspect misconduct, they should notify the editor in confidence, and should not share their concerns with other parties unless officially notified by the journal that they may do so.