IJME Guidelines for Reviewers

(These are concise guidelines. For more information, please consult COPE (Committee on Publication Ethics) Guidelines titled “Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers”)

As a multi-disciplinary journal, IJME relies on scholars from multiple disciplines for peer review. IJME selects a reviewer, who normally receives invitation from the OJS (Open Journal System), the editorial management system it uses. Please accept the invitation if you have the expertise and time to provide a timely written review report. Your review report is intended to assist the author in improving the quality of the manuscript. It also assists editors in decision making. The author has a right to disagree, and the editors’ decision may not always be as per your recommendations.

Peer Review Model, Report Sharing and Credit

IJME uses a single-anonymised (author disclosed to reviewer) model with a provision for the reviewer to voluntarily sign the review report (i.e. to disclose name to author and in public with the published article). The reviewer’s report is portable. That is, if IJME declines the manuscript and the author takes it to another journal, which requests a copy of reviewer’s report, it will be shared.

Ethics of Reviewer

Impartiality: Impartiality and objectivity are hallmarks of peer review. The IJME review-model enables a reviewer to access author information, reposing extra responsibility on the reviewer to be unbiased in relation to the author’s nationality, religion, caste, political belief, gender, institutional affiliation, etc.

Conflict of Interest (COI): COI erodes impartiality of review. You may recuse yourself from review if, in relation to the manuscript and its content, you have financial or non-financial COI (recent/current collaboration with author, mentor-mentee relationship, employment at the same institution, or any other relationship/association with any of the authors). Despite a declaration of COI, if you decide to review or IJME requests you to review, you must record/declare your competing interests in the review report.

Confidentiality: Reviewers gain lots of information and ideas from manuscripts reviewed. Reviewers must not misuse it against the author or for personal gains. Kindly keep it and the correspondence on it confidential from others. If you have collaborated with anybody for conducting a review, please provide information on your collaborators to IJME and be responsible for ensuring that the collaborator upholds the same standard of confidentiality.

Use of Artificial Intelligence (AI): IJME does not allow the use of AI by reviewers for assessment manuscript.

Timeliness: In order to avoid delays, IJME gives one week to accept the review invitation and three weeks to submit the review, from the day a review invitation is sent. A reviewer should agree to review only if the manuscript is within their expertise and if they would be able to review the submission within the given time frame. If an extension of the deadline is required, please inform the editorial office about the same. If a reviewer is unable to review, it would be helpful if they could decline the invitation so that we can search for another reviewer and avoid any delays in the review process. It would also be helpful to receive suggestion of an alternative reviewer based on their expertise.

Review instructions & preparation of review report

What to review:

    • Please explain the importance of the topic and the potential of the manuscript to influence policy and practice.

    • Please assess the manuscript for originality, relevance (particularly for LMICs), quality, rigor, clarity of points/arguments and fairness of conclusions drawn.

    • If it is using research findings, assess the methodology in detail. Check whether the methods are sufficiently described, results are reproducible, and the figures/images/tables are relevant and clearly presented, without any repetition of data in the text.

    • Reviewers are not required to correct grammatical mistakes in the manuscript but a general comment on the ease of understanding the manuscript and grammar would be helpful.

Review form: Please fill a short review form which will be made available on the OJS during the submission of your review comments.

Your comments to the author: They should be constructive and where needed, provide information and references which can help improve the manuscript. Be specific in your critique, if any, and explain what further work the author should do. Your comments should be professional and NOT inflammatory or derogatory. Please try to ensure that all important comments on the manuscript are shared with authors and only brief opinions and recommendations are shared with editors. Please mention the line numbers from the main text to indicate a specific comment

Your confidential comments to Editors: They should be brief and should be congruent with the comments provided on the manuscript. If you suspect any misconduct (plagiarism, data fabrication/falsification), please share that with the editors. Please select your recommendation about the decision on the submission from the choices given in the review form, but you may explain your choice here.

Comments in the manuscript file: We expect reviewers to give detailed and specific comments in the sections provided in the OJS. But if a reviewer chooses to give specific comments in the manuscript file, we request them to do so by ensuring their identity is hidden while giving comments and that they do not make any changes directly to the main text.

Re-review and commentary

If you would like to re-review the revised manuscript or are interested in writing a comment based on it after publication, you could let us know by selecting appropriate options in the review form.

Reviewer identity and benefits

Please let the editors know whether you prefer to sign your review report (i.e. disclose your name to the author and public) and if you would like IJME to record it in a repository (e.g. ORCID, Publons).

Submitting the review on the OJS

1) The review invitation email from the IJME will have the submission title and the abstract at the end of the email. The email will also indicate the response due date and the review due date. Reviewers will also receive a separate email with the username and password for login. The email will also have the URL to the OJS.

2) On clicking the URL, the reviewer has to use the username and password to login.

3) Steps for submitting a review:

    a. Request: This page consists of review request, article title, abstract, review type, review files and review schedule. The reviewer can either accept or decline to review. If the reviewer declines to review, the process ends here.

    b. Guidelines: If the reviewer accepts to review, it takes the reviewer to the next page “Guidelines”. This page will display guidelines for the reviewers.

    c. Download & Review: This page has review files, review form, sections to give comments for authors and confidential comments for editors. This page also has the option to attach files if required. The reviewer can give their recommendation regarding the decision on the submission. The reviewer can either submit the review or save and comeback to the review process again later.

Help IJME keep its content free. You can support us from as little as Rs. 500 Make a Donation