Guidelines for Selecting Journals That Avoid Fraudulent Practices in Scholarly Publishing

By Dadkhah, Mehdi; Borchardt, Glenn | Iranian Journal of Management Studies, Summer 2016 | Go to article overview

Guidelines for Selecting Journals That Avoid Fraudulent Practices in Scholarly Publishing


Dadkhah, Mehdi, Borchardt, Glenn, Iranian Journal of Management Studies


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Introduction

Along with its many advantages, the emerging open-access publishing model has led to problems for scholarly publishing. Some people having only a strict business view of scholarly publishing tend to dismiss academic ethics. They have created predatory journals, hijacked legitimate journal websites, and fashioned bogus metrics in support. Predatory publishers may use the open-access model, have exorbitant page charges, and publish papers with low quality or nonexistent peer review (Nolfi et al., 2015). Like other internet-related swindles involving spam and phishing activities, the phenomenon is relatively new. The "predatory" term was introduced by Jeffrey Beall in 2010 (Beall, 2013), resulting in an academic sub discipline that confronts the problem.

Recent papers warn about predatory publishers and present general criteria for their detection. Some discuss misleading metrics and impact factors and provide lists of known bogus metrics (Jalalian and Mahboobi, 2013; Jalalian, 2013; Gutierrez et al., 2015). Designed to make predatory journals look legitimate, these metrics generally are without merit. The distractive effects on science produced by fake publishers and journals have been studied (Jalalian and Mahboobi, 2014). There have been valuable papers directing authors on writing and selecting suitable journals for publishing manuscripts, but these did not consider emerging issues in scholarly publishing (Huth, 1986; Klingner et al., 2005; Moher, 2010).

Guidelines for Authors

Our inspection of Beall's list of predatory journals (2015b) shows that there were 67 such journals in the field of management alone. These will publish papers without satisfactory review, leading to misleading or bogus advice in management science. Although editors comprise our audience for this paper, we must be concerned with authors as well.

Also, research institutes must include emerging issues in scholarly publishing to their criteria for journal selection when advising the authors they support. Table 1 presents steps that authors should consider before submitting a manuscript.

Guidelines for Editors

In this section, we present general guidelines for increasing journals quality and protecting them against emerging issues in scholarly publishing. Our guidelines are based on Beall's criteria (Beall, 2015a; Dadkhah and Bianciardi; 2016) for predatory journal detection, but we tried to expand them and present some details based on our own observations.

Contact Address and Emails

All journals should provide email addresses or contact forms for author queries. General email addresses are insufficient because authors need to verify that they are dealing with the original website of the journal, not a hijacked one. Authors must be reassured that all editors are real and their target journal does not abuse the names of standout researchers. Without authorization, predatory and hijacked journals sometimes include the names of standout researchers on their editorial boards, being careful to avoid using official email addresses. To prevent spam, some authentic journals do not use official email addresses. We recommend that editors use official email addresses at least for the managing editor or editor in chief. Much spam email can be prevented using an image instead of text for the official email address on the journal website.

Editorial Board Affiliation

Science is becoming so specialized that journals should avoid using only board members from a single country. International advisory members can help to attract and manage papers from their respective countries. In addition to English, various languages might well be represented. Otherwise, a special language editor may be necessary for evaluating technical aspects and checking the possibility of plagiarism.

Call for Papers and Spam Emails

Fraudulent journals commonly send laudatory spam emails to receive papers from researchers. …

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