Peer Review Policy
Journal of Ayurveda and Integrated Medical Sciences (JAIMS) adheres to the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) Code of Conduct and Best Practice Guidelines (http://publicationethics.org). We strive to ensure that peer review is fair, unbiased and timely. The practice of double-blind peer review is intended to ensure that only good quality articles is published. As an objective method of assuring excellence in scholarly publishing, it has been approved by all reputable scientific journals. Our referees play a vital role in maintaining the high standards of the Journal, which is why all incoming manuscripts are peer reviewed as per the Peer Review Policy of JAIMS.
All submitted manuscripts are read by the editorial staff. To save time for authors and peer-reviewers, only those papers that seem most likely to meet our editorial criteria are sent for double blind review. Those papers judged by the editors to be of insufficient general interest or otherwise inappropriate are rejected promptly without external review (although these decisions may be based on informal advice from specialists in the field).
Manuscripts judged to be of potential interest to our readership are sent for double blind review, typically to two or three reviewers, but sometimes more if special advice is needed (for example on statistics or a particular technique). in which the referees remain anonymous to the author(s) throughout and following the refereeing process, whilst the identity of the author(s) is likewise unknown to the reviewers. The editors then make a decision based on the reviewers' advice, from among several possibilities:
- Accept, with or without editorial revisions.
- Invite the authors to revise their manuscript to address specific concerns before a final decision is reached
- Reject, but indicate to the authors that further work might justify a resubmission.
- Reject outright, typically on grounds of specialist interest, lack of novelty, insufficient conceptual advance or major technical and/or interpretational problems
Reviewers are welcome to recommend a particular course of action, but they should bear in mind that the other reviewers of a particular paper may have different technical expertise and/or views, and the editors may have to make a decision based on conflicting advice. The most useful reports, therefore, provide the editors with the information on which a decision should be based. Setting out the arguments for and against publication is often more helpful to the editors than a direct recommendation one way or the other.
Chief Editor's decision is final
Editorial decisions are not a matter of counting votes or numerical rank assessments, and we do not always follow the majority recommendation. We try to evaluate the strength of the arguments raised by each reviewer and by the authors, and we may also consider other information not available to either party. Our primary responsibilities are to our readers and to the scientific community at large, and in deciding how best to serve them, we must weigh the claims of each paper against the many others also under consideration.
We may return to reviewers for further advice, particularly in cases where they disagree with each other, or where the authors believe they have been misunderstood on points of fact. We therefore ask that reviewers should be willing to provide follow-up advice as requested. We are very aware, however, that reviewers are usually reluctant to be drawn into prolonged disputes, so we try to keep consultation to the minimum we judge necessary to provide a fair hearing for the authors.
When reviewers agree to assess a paper, we consider this a commitment to review subsequent revisions. However, editors will not send a resubmitted paper back to the reviewers if it seems that the authors have not made a serious attempt to address the criticisms.
We take reviewers' criticisms seriously; in particular, we are very reluctant to disregard technical criticisms. In cases where one reviewer alone opposes publication, we may consult the other reviewers as to whether s/he is applying an unduly critical standard. We occasionally bring in additional reviewers to resolve disputes, but we prefer to avoid doing so unless there is a specific issue, for example a specialist technical point, on which we feel a need for further advice.
The final decision and time to publication
The Editor-In-Chief is responsible for the decision to reject or recommend the manuscript for publication. This decision will be sent to the author along with any recommendations made by the referees.
After acceptance, it currently takes upto 15 days to publish article online.
Because we are committed to provide timely editorial decisions, potential reviewers are requested to respond promptly and those who accept invitations to review are requested to provide their comments within the agreed timeframe. If reviewers anticipate that they will not be able to meet the deadline, they are requested to inform the assigning editor so that alternative arrangements can be made.
Potential Conflicts of Interest
If a reviewer perceives that there may be a significant conflict of interest (financial or otherwise) for a particular manuscript that they are invited to review, they should either seek clarification with the assigning editor or decline the invitation.
Manuscripts are reviewed with due respect for authors’ and reviewers’ confidentiality. As a condition of agreeing to assess the manuscript, all reviewers undertake to keep submitted manuscripts and associated data confidential. If a reviewer seeks advice from colleagues while assessing a manuscript, he or she ensures that confidentiality is maintained and that the names of any such colleagues are provided to the journal with the final report.
We do not release reviewers’ identities to authors. We strongly discourage reviewers from revealing their identities as they may be asked to comment on the criticisms of other reviewers and on further revisions of the manuscript; identified reviewers may find it more difficult to be objective in such circumstances. We also strongly discourage authors from attempting to determine reviewer identities or to confront their reviewers directly. Our policy is to neither confirm nor deny speculation about reviewers’ identities and we encourage reviewers to adopt a similar policy.