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Canadian Science Publishing (CSP) is a not-for-profit federally incorporated publishing company that owns and publishes a suite of scientific journals.
At CSP our mission is to publish high-quality, international scientific journals that provide researchers in Canada and around the world with a means to communicate their findings. We are champions of scientific knowledge exchange, committed to strengthening the integrity, relevance, and reach of science. We ensure that scientific knowledge is easy to discover, use, and share.
Journal management and editorial independence
Our Editors are volunteers and work independently from the Publisher; they have complete editorial freedom and are fully responsible for selecting the most relevant and timely content. The Publisher operates in a fiscally prudent manner that ensures the journal’s continued viability and is accountable to its Board of Directors.
Board of Directors
CSP is governed by a Board of Directors composed of experienced professionals who represent the diverse stakeholder interests involved in scholarly publishing. The Board is responsible for oversight of the business of the organization.
The Executive Editor-in-Chief has overall responsibility for the scientific and editorial integrity of the journals owned and published by CSP. This includes appointing and advising Editors as needed, setting policy, and resolving ethical issues and conflicts as necessary.
The Publisher is responsible for all operational, financial and legal aspects of journal publication, including but not limited to copyright policy, liability, budgeting, costs, revenue, access to publications (subscriptions and sales), and pricing.
Editors-in-chief are responsible for the content of their journals, its scientific quality, and its adherence to ethical standards in scientific publishing. This includes:
- soliciting high-quality content;
- filling journal page allotments as set by the Publisher;
- raising the journal profile in Canada and internationally;
- appointing and managing an editorial board and/or associate editors;
- safeguarding the integrity of peer review processes; and
- investigating allegations of misconduct.
We subscribe to the ICMJE definition of authorship . An author is someone who:
- contributes substantially to the conception and design, or acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data;
- helps draft the paper or revises it critically for important intellectual content;
- approves the version to be published; and
- agrees to be accountable for all aspects of the work.
Any person listed as an author must meet each of these authorship criteria, and anyone who meets these authorship criteria must be listed as an author. Contributors who do not meet authorship criteria should be listed in an Acknowledgement statement.
As an ORCID member organization, we encourage the submitting author to include their ORCID iD upon original manuscript submission. We also encourage all co-authors to link their ORCID iD to their user account in our submission system. The ORCID iD is a unique and persistent identifier for researchers. It resolves name ambiguity and ensures correct attribution of research and other activities.
Authors are encouraged to specify how they contributed to the work in a contributors’ statement using the CASRAI’s Contributor Roles Taxonomy (CRedIT) .
Peer review relies on the expertise and goodwill of researchers to ensure that the scientific record is accurate and trustworthy. We are grateful for the voluntary efforts of our referees (peer reviewers), whose work helps make our publications better.
CSP journals use an online platform for submission and peer review. The current platform is ScholarOne Manuscripts.
All manuscript submissions are evaluated by an Editor. Manuscripts judged to be out of scope or otherwise inappropriate for a journal are rejected promptly without peer review, or offered transfer to another, more appropriate journal for consideration. Manuscripts that seem to be within scope, of interest, and methodologically sound are sent to experts in the field for peer review.
Authors have an opportunity at submission to supply names of preferred and non-preferred referees, but Editors may invite any qualified expert to review the paper. Referees are drawn from the wider research community, though some of our journals rely on editorial board members who act as dedicated, expert referees (see journal webpages for more details). Referees are asked to decline review invitations if they have any conflicts of interest, and to disclose any conflicts they encounter during peer review. Referees may co-review with a trainee, but are expected to independently assess the manuscript, approve the final comments, and disclose the co-reviewer’s participation in the comments to the editor. Upon completing their review, referees may opt to receive credit for it on Publons .
Peer review model
CSP journals use single-blind peer review: referees remain anonymous to the authors unless they actively self-identify in their comments to the authors. Referees are asked to complete their assessments within 2–3 weeks, depending on the journal.
Referees are to treat all communications regarding unpublished manuscripts as confidential. In their peer review, referees are asked to rate the originality of the work, quality of the science and reporting, and interest to readers. Comments to the authors should be specific, constructive, and fair, aimed at helping authors improve their work. Comments to the editors should disclose any ethical concerns that arose during peer review. Reviewers may also opt in or out of reviewing a revised version of the article. Referees are informed of the editorial outcome of articles they peer review.
Editorial decisions — whether accept, reject, or revise — are sent to all authors. For decisions made after peer review (and for some of our journals, after an associate editor has made a recommendation), peer review and editorial comments to the authors are included in the decision letter. All decisions are made by the editors. Peer reviews inform, but do not dictate, editorial decisions. Financial concerns have no bearing on editorial decision-making, as publication fees and discount/waiver eligibility are collected after acceptance.
Accepted articles are published with a notice of peer review history, which includes submission date, accept date, online publication date, and the date of any corrections, if applicable.
AppealsAuthors may appeal an editorial decision to reject their manuscript by taking the following steps:
- write to the editor via the journal email address;
- explain clearly why you disagree with the decision;
- include a point-by-point response to all editor/reviewer comments; and
- supply new information with direct bearing on the decision.
By default, copyright remains with the author(s) or the organization that owns the author(s)’ copyright in the article. In our open access journals, authors agree on submission that if their manuscript is accepted, it will be published under the Creative Commons license CC BY. In all other journals, the copyright holder(s) must grant publishing rights to CSP upon acceptance by supplying:
- completed license to publish forms , OR
- completed open access (OA) publishing form (for groups who choose open access publication through our OpenArticle program) .
This means that:
- each author who retains copyright must complete their own form, AND
- each author whose copyright is held by an organization (including the governments of Commonwealth countries or the United States) must have a form completed on their behalf by the signing officer of that organization.
Copyright statements and licensing terms are published with the copyedited article at e-First, and when the article is collected into a journal issue (version of record).
Authors are responsible for acknowledging and obtaining permission to use, reproduce, or adapt any copyrighted material (including text, tables, figures, and other copyrighted content) included in their article. The author must credit the creator of the material and indicate that permission was received.
Preprints and postprints
To help extend the reach of science, we support the sharing of new research findings before and after publication. Before publication, authors may:
- post an un-refereed, preliminary version of the manuscript to a preprint server, institutional repository, personal website, or funder archive;
- present the work at a conference as an abstract, poster, lecture, or paper, so long as the manuscript submitted to the journal presents substantial additional content; and
- submit their thesis or dissertation (in full or in part) as a manuscript, and may include their published manuscript (in full or in part) in their thesis or dissertation.
Upon submission, authors should:
- disclose whether the work was presented at a conference and, if so, include conference details;
- disclose the availability of any published, preliminary work in the covering letter;
- confirm that they either retain copyright of any published conference material or acquired permission from the copyright holder, in the covering letter; and
- cite the preliminary version in the manuscript.
We will not consider manuscripts that have been previously published, or are under consideration for publication, in another journal.
After publication, authors retain the right to:
- post the submitted or accepted version of the manuscript to a preprint server, institutional repository, personal website, or funder archive, providing a link back to the published version of record once available;
- reproduce the final published article for the purpose of teaching; and
- reuse the final published article (in full or in part) in other works created by them for noncommercial purposes, provided the published version of record is acknowledged and cited.
Research involving human or animal experimentation, or collection of specimens
Manuscripts reporting the results of research involving human participants or experimental animals, or collection of specimens, must adhere to the following principles and provide proof that they have done so in the Methods section.
- All research involving humans or animals must be reviewed and approved, prior to beginning the research, by the appropriate ethics review committee or animal care review committee at the institution(s) where the experiments were carried out.
- All subjects of human experimentation must provide informed consent prior to participating in a study.
- All research involving animals must be conducted according to either the Canadian Council on Animal Care (CCAC) guidelines or the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (8th edition, National Academies Press).
- All research involving endangered species, or collection of specimens, must be conducted in accordance with all applicable laws, guidelines, and regulations.
- Authors must acquire any necessary research permits before conducting fieldwork, and research permit/license numbers must be provided in the manuscript.
Clinical trials must have been registered in a publicly accessible clinical trial registry before patient enrolment. Authors must provide the registration number and the name of the clinical trial registry on submission and in the manuscript abstract. See the ICMJE guidelines on trial registration for more information.
We encourage authors who use other study designs (including study protocols) to pre-register their work in a publicly accessible registry.
Papers following from registered studies should declare and explain any deviations from the study protocol.
Data sharing statement
Clinical trials must include a data sharing statement. Based on ICMJE recommendations, this statement should indicate the following:
- whether individual deidentified participant data (including data dictionaries) will be shared (“undecided” is not an acceptable answer);
- what data, in particular, will be shared;
- what additional, related documents will be available (e.g., study protocol, statistical analysis plan);
- when the data will become available and for how long;
- criteria for accessing the data (including with whom data will be shared, for what types of analyses, and by what mechanism).
We support research and reporting practices that enable the reproducibility of work we publish. See our Principles and Policy on Data Availability for more details.
We encourage authors to make use of study reporting guidelines when writing up their work. Up-to-date guidelines can be found at the EQUATOR Network , where authors may consult the flow chart or wizard to identify which guideline(s) to use. A completed copy of the guideline checklist may be submitted with the manuscript as Supplementary Data. Note that some of our journals mandate the use of study reporting guidelines; see journal submission guidelines.
Sex and gender equity
We endorse the SAGER guidelines (Sex and Gender Equity in Research) and encourage authors to include sex and gender considerations where relevant. This means that for studies involving organisms capable of sex and/or gender differentiation, whether human or not, authors should:
- use the terms sex (biological attribute) and gender (shaped by social and cultural circumstances) carefully to avoid confusing both terms;
- specify in the title and abstract what sex(es)/gender(s) the study applies to;
- disclose whether and what sex/gender differences were expected;
- design and conduct the research in a way that can reveal sex- and/or gender-related differences;
- report data disaggregated by sex and gender;
- discuss the potential implications of sex and gender on the study results and analyses; and
- if a sex and/or gender analysis was not conducted, provide a rationale in the Discussion.
Race and ethnicity
We endorse participant diversity and collection of robust demographic data. Because both race and ethnicity are socio-political constructs, not biological facts, authors should take care to:
- use precise, respectful language to describe study participants, avoiding potentially stigmatizing terms;
- collect other kinds of data that could explain population differences (e.g., age, sex, region, immigration status, income, education);
explain in the Methods
- how race/ethnicity were defined, and by whom;
- who classified participants according to race/ethnicity;
- why race/ethnicity were assessed in the study;
- report data that are disaggregated by race/ethnicity in the Results; and
- discuss the potential implications of race/ethnicity on the study results and analyses.
- should focus on area(s) directly relevant to the work being reported, and
- must follow internationally recognized treaties, conventions, and law.
Conflicts of interest
We define a conflict of interest as anything that could undermine, or be perceived to undermine, the accuracy and trustworthiness of the scientific record by interfering with the objective conduct of research, reporting, peer review, and publication. Potential conflicts of interest could include (but are not limited to):
- financial considerations (e.g., consultancies, employment, grants, fees and honoraria, patents, royalties, stock or share ownership, industry funding),
- personal and professional relationships,
- political or religious considerations, and
- academic bias.
The following policies and processes are intended to promote transparency, enabling readers to form their own judgements about potential bias.
Authors are responsible for disclosing all financial and non-financial relationships that might bias or be seen to bias their work. We encourage authors to supply both a competing interests statement and a funding statement on submission. These statements are available to editors and referees during peer review and are published with the article if it is accepted.
Competing interests statement
Authors are responsible for disclosing all financial and non-financial relationships that might bias or be seen to bias their work. Authors are encouraged to include a statement of competing interests during submission and on the article title page. Authors who are unsure what to list may wish to consult the ICMJE form for disclosure of competing interests .
Authors are responsible for disclosing what support they received to carry out their research. Authors are encouraged to supply a funding statement during submission and on their title page. The statement must include funding agency names written out in full, and grant/award numbers.
Editors recuse themselves from involvement in peer review and decision-making for articles with which they have conflicts of interest or relationships that pose potential conflicts. When an article is authored by an editor, peer review is handled by an editorial colleague, and the names of parties involved are published with the article.
Our journals use Publons’ Reviewer Connect to screen out reviewers with clear conflicts. Reviewers should recuse themselves from reviewing specific manuscripts if the potential for bias exists and must disclose to editors any competing interests that become apparent during peer review.
CSP and its journals are members of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE), and abide by its core practices . Instances of alleged misconduct — including those lodged by whistleblowers directly or on social media — are investigated and handled according to the COPE flowcharts . Per COPE’s broadest definition of the word , we define misconduct as “any practice that may affect the reliability of the research record in terms of findings, conclusions, or attribution.” Allegations of misconduct should be brought to the attention of the Editor(s)-in-Chief by way of the journal’s editorial office.
Guest, gift, and ghost authorship
We do not allow guest, gift, or ghost authors. Guest and gift authorship occur when someone who does not qualify as a contributing author is listed in the author byline. Ghost authorship occurs when someone who qualifies as a contributing author is omitted from the author byline.
Disagreement over the author byline — or proposed changes to it after submission, acceptance or publication — should be resolved between the authors, with the help of their institution(s) if necessary. When made aware of disputes, we follow COPE best practice regarding authorship , and require consent from every listed, proposed, and omitted author before making any changes.
Per the Office of Research Integrity (ORI) , we define plagiarism as “the theft or misappropriation of intellectual property and the substantial unattributed textual copying of another's work.” We include in this definition:
- self-plagiarism/text recycling (when authors reuse portions of their own previously published work while authoring a new work, often unattributed), and
- patch writing/micro plagiarism (when authors rely too much on inadequate paraphrasing, and the bulk of the manuscript is not in their own words).
There are different degrees of plagiarism; much depends on its extent and position in the text, and on its attribution. CSP journals use CrossRef Similarity Check to screen submissions for unoriginal content, with editors interpreting the originality report to determine if instances of overlapping text are problematic.
COPE recommendations to editors include flowcharts for handling suspected plagiarism in a submitted manuscript and suspected plagiarism in a published manuscript . Authors may wish to consult Avoiding Plagiarism, Self-plagiarism, and Other Questionable Writing Practices: A Guide to Ethical Writing by Michel Roig for the ORI.
Duplicate submission occurs when the same paper is under editorial consideration with more than one journal at a time. The authors have either submitted to more than one journal simultaneously or submitted to a second journal before withdrawing or receiving a reject decision from the first journal. Duplicate submission is a form of author misconduct that wastes publisher, academic, and research resources (the time and effort of staff/editor/reviewer); and introduces the risk of duplicate publication and copyright disputes, should both journals wish to publish the article.
COPE recommendations for editors are under suspected redundant publication in a submitted manuscript .
Duplicate and redundant publication
Duplicate publication occurs when more or less the same study is published in more than one journal. Redundant publication (also called data segmentation, salami-slicing, least publishable unit, and undue fragmentation) occurs when authors divide research results from the same study into several publications unnecessarily and without proper attribution. Authors should disclose related articles in their covering letter at submission.
COPE recommendations for editors are under suspected redundant publication in a published manuscript .
Data fabrication and falsification
Data fabrication concerns making up research findings. Data falsification concerns manipulating or withholding research data to create a false impression of the findings. It also includes image manipulation.
COPE recommendations to editors include flowcharts for handling suspected fabricated data in a submitted manuscript , and suspected fabricated data in a published manuscript .
Images should accurately reflect the original data. Although some minimal processing may be appropriate, or even necessary, per Rockefeller University , authors should not:
- enhance, obscure, move, remove or introduce a specific feature in an image;
- consolidate images from multiple sources (different gels, fields, or exposures) without demarcating them with dividing lines;
- adjust brightness, contrast, or colour balance on only part of the image; or to such an extent that information is misrepresented, enhanced, or erased.
If image resolution is of insufficient quality to screen for manipulation, authors may be asked to supply the original image data. When investigating cases of potential image manipulation, editors consider whether image manipulation affects interpretation of the data (which constitutes fraud) or not (which indicates inappropriate conduct), and follow the Council of Science Editors (CSE) procedure for handling image guideline violations for submitted articles and COPE’s flowchart on image manipulation in a published article for published articles.
Consequences of author misconduct
Per COPE, findings of author misconduct may result in rejection or withdrawal of a submission, and communication with the offender(s)’ institution(s) or other regulatory bodies. Findings of author misconduct uncovered after publication may also result in a published correction, retraction, expression of concern, or notice of redundant publication (see Post-publication discussion and corrections ).
Citation manipulation refers to any deliberate citation practice aimed at artificially boosting citation rates, or, by extension, journal impact factors. It can take many forms.
- At some point during peer review, the editors/reviewers pressure or require authors to cite works from the editors/reviewers/journal.
- Self-citation. Authors routinely and excessively cite their own works.
- Citation swapping. Also called “citation cartels,” this involves groups of researchers or institutions preferentially citing each other’s work.
We condemn each of the practices described above while at the same time recognizing that there are instances when editor- or reviewer-suggested citations and self-citations are appropriate. In assessing citations for inclusion or exclusion, people should consider what sources would be of greatest use to a reader who wants to learn more.
We define complaints as an expression of unhappiness owing to a real or perceived failure of policy or process, or a severe misjudgment. Therefore, this policy applies to complaints made about journal or publishing policies or processes, or about the actions of the journal publishing team.
We are open to receiving feedback about our service, as we strive to continually improve our processes.
Complaints should be directed to the journal editorial office. Complaints will be acknowledged within 2 business days, and a first response (or interim response) provided within 2 weeks. If the complainant is unhappy with the response, it will be escalated appropriately.
Post-publication discussion and corrections
Post-publication debate and scrutiny are important for the advancement of science. We support debate of our published content with Comments and Replies, which may be submitted for consideration.
- Comments on papers in recent issues of a journal may be accepted for publication, if they are brief and of a technical or interpretative nature.
- Replies to such Comments are invited from the original authors and are generally published in the same issue.
Where post-publication scrutiny identifies a substantial error, we may take steps to correct the publication record by publishing a Correction or Retraction. Other problems may warrant an Expression of concern or Notice of redundant publication. All such notices are published in the next available journal issue, with a bi-directional link to the article in question, and are freely accessible online.
- Correction : Notification of an important error made by the journal or by the author(s). We will consider issuing a correction only if the scientific record is seriously affected, e.g.: a small portion of an otherwise reliable publication proves to be misleading (especially because of honest error); or the author/contributor list is incorrect (i.e., a deserving author has been omitted or somebody who does not meet authorship criteria has been included). Authors may be consulted about whether and what type of correction to issue, but the final decision rests with the Editor-in-Chief and journal staff. The corresponding author must sign off on the correction on behalf of all authors by completing a new license to publish form.
- Retraction : Notification of invalid results owing to unreliable data or findings, or scientific misconduct (redundant publication, plagiarism, unethical research). Retractions state who is retracting the article and the reason(s) for the retraction (misconduct or honest error). See COPE retraction guidelines.
- Expression of concern : We may publish an expression of concern if an article is under investigation for research or publication misconduct, or there is inconclusive evidence that the findings are unreliable.
- Notice of redundant publication : In cases of redundant or duplicate publication, we may publish a notice of redundant publication if the version published in the CSP journal takes precedence (by date of publication or licensing).
CSP publishes a mix of open access journals and subscription (hybrid) journals. Authors in our hybrid journals can post the submitted and accepted versions of their manuscript online or purchase open access for their article.
Hybrid journal content is available to institutional and personal subscribers. Non-subscribers can access hybrid journal content on a pay-per-view basis. Researchers in developing countries can access our journal content through Research4Life .
Authors in our hybrid journals also have the following publishing choices:
- TSpace : the accepted manuscript is deposited to TSpace, the University of Toronto’s open repository (green OA)
- Just-IN : the accepted manuscript is posted on the journal’s website shortly after acceptance
- OpenArticle : authors may pay for their published article (version of record) to be made open access (gold OA)
We offer flexible publishing options for researchers, and these options are supported in part by fees that mitigate the costs of publication. Fees vary by journal. Several discounts and waivers are available, based on need (per Research4Life criteria), an author’s society membership, or a partnership between CSP and the author’s institution. Ability to pay has no bearing on editorial decision-making, as discounts and waivers are applied only after acceptance. We may, at our discretion, refund a publication fee or offer a credit towards a future publication. For details regarding journal publication fees, discounts, and waivers, see our Publication fees page or each journal’s About the Journal page.