Wiley’s New Ethics Guidelines Reveal Importance of Collaboration in Defending Ethical Publishing

John Wiley & Sons, Inc., has reaffirmed its commitment to defending and promoting ethical publishing with the launch of its Best Practice Guidelines on Publishing Ethics: A Publisher’s Perspective. Second Edition. Wiley was the first major publisher to produce such guidelines in 2006, and the newly revised and updated edition sets a new benchmark for the highest standards of ethical publishing, offering clear and practical guidance to journal editors and society partners.

“As the publishing partner of over 800 prestigious societies, representing more than two million members globally, Wiley is uniquely placed to play a leading role in defending the highest standards of publishing ethics,” said Steve Miron, Senior Vice President, Global Research, Wiley. “The new guidelines are a tremendous tool for helping us work alongside our journal editors and partners to fulfil our joint responsibilities as custodians of the scientific record.”

Wiley’s first guidelines on publication ethics, written to provide practical advice to editors on the major ethical principles of academic publishing, were supported by detailed flowcharts and other resources about handling ethical situations provided by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE).

The 2006 guidelines established a benchmark for ethical standards in publishing, a commitment underlined further with the launch of the Wiley Ethics Helpdesk, to assist editors as and when issues emerged.

In the new second edition, guidance has been added about whistle-blowers, animal research and clinical research, particularly around clinical trial registration. The new edition includes guidance on best practice for journals in human rights and confidentiality, and addresses how approaches differ between cultures.

The new and uniquely multidisciplinary guidelines have been revised, updated, and reviewed by 30 editors and ethics experts who were selected to represent the diverse communities Wiley serves around the world.

“Journal publishing is, at its best, a team effort and handling ethical problems is no exception. This is reflected by the multidisciplinary collaboration to review and produce these new guidelines,” said Chris Graf, New Business Director, Professional Innovations, Wiley, and Treasurer of COPE. “We hope the guidelines will be an invaluable tool to help journals and societies resolve ethical issues, and we suggest they are used as a basis to establish clear, transparent policies and procedures.”

As part of its commitment to defending the highest standards of publication ethics, Wiley is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics and provides membership as an option for all journal editors.

“At COPE we increasingly feel that our role is to support publishers as they seek to guide their editors through the increasingly complex minefield of publishing ethics today,” said Dr. Virginia Barbour, Chair of the Committee on Publication Ethics. “These excellent new guidelines provide not only a comprehensive resource for Wiley editors, but also serve as a model for what other publishers might produce and are a complement to the resources that COPE itself has available.”

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