22 June 2016
The digitization and related developments in journal editing and publishing necessitate increasing the awareness of all stakeholders of science communication in the emerging global problems and possible solutions. Journal editors and publishers are frequently encountered with the fast-growing problems of authorship, conflicts of interest, peer review, research misconduct, unethical citations, and inappropriate journal impact metrics. While the number of erroneous and unethical research papers and wasteful, or 'predatory', journals is increasing exponentially, responsible editors are urged to 'clean' the literature by correcting or retracting related articles. Indexers are advised to implement measures for accepting truly influential and ethical journals and delisting sources with predatory publishing practices. Updating knowledge and skills of authors, editors and publishers, developing and endorsing recommendations of global editorial associations, and (re)drafting journal instructions can be viewed as potential tools for improving ethics of academic journals. The aim of this Statement is to increase awareness of all stakeholders of science communication of the emerging ethical issues in journal editing and publishing and initiate a campaign of upgrading and enforcing related journal instructions.