Ethical Guidelines


Dental Anthropology aims to provide a collegial environment for publication as well as uphold the integrity of ethical publishing.  Ethical guidelines for publication in the journal are outlined further below.



Research Integrity

It is the expectation that research submitted to the journal to have been undertaken with the highest integrity.  This includes:

  • Transparency and clear communication of research methods and data collected
  • Care for research subjects
  • Accountability for one’s own research integrity
  • Thoughtful research practices


If anyone should believe that a manuscript published in Dental Anthropology violates any ethical guidelines or the above principles of research integrity should contact the editor of the journal directly.  Concerns will be addressed following the guidelines outlined by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) and the guidelines provided by Elsevier as the Publishing Ethics Resource Kit (PERK).


Moreover, specific to this journal and its content – the following guidelines must be followed:


  • Human Studies and Subjects: Manuscripts that detail research involving human subjects must include a statement identifying the ethics committee that approved the study. Participant anonymity must be preserved.
  • Human Remains: Research that involves human remains must contain an ethical statement of how permission was obtained to research and publish data on the remains. Human remains are defined as whole or portions of deceased individuals that include the skeleton or other soft tissues.  Data derived from human remains are also subject to these ethical guidelines to include photographs, radiographs, 3D scans, casts, and/or isotopic data. If permissions could not be obtained (e.g., there is no identified descendent community) ethical treatment of remains need still be discussed.  Research should also contain reference to the relevant ethics committees that approved the research, if applicable.
  • Animal Studies: Manuscripts that detail research involving animal subjects must include a statement identifying the ethics committee that approved the study.
  • Terminology: When the term race or any other such similar term (e.g., population, ethnicity) are used, they must be defined for clarity. Similarly, so should the use of the terms sex and gender.
  • Image manipulation, falsification, fabrication: No image should be modified to misrepresent original results or their significance.
  • Fraudulent Research and Research Misconduct: Any research found to include fraudulent results will be retracted from the journal (see Retractions and Corrections).



Editorial Process

The journal is committed to editorial independence and strives to prevent any biases during the editorial process.  The editor and editorial board do not discriminate against authors or peer reviewers based on their identity or interpersonal relationships.  All manuscripts are initially reviewed by the editor before being sent to a member of the editorial board who also does a review before sending out for peer review.  Manuscripts are sent to a minimum of one outside peer reviewer.  The inclusion of multiple individuals helps to prevent biases from emerging.  Editors serve a three-year term that is renewable at the discretion of the Dental Anthropology Association. 


Any appeals of editorial decisions may be brought to the president of the Dental Anthropology Association.  The president can review the decision and may also discuss broadly with the editorial board and with the officers of the Dental Anthropology Association. 


Responsibilities of Editor and Editorial Board: The editor and the editorial board should

  1. Ensure the quality of published materials
  2. Ensure the integrity of the academic record
  3. Meet the needs of the authors, reviewers, and readers
  4. Allow freedom of expression
  5. Strive to promote a collegial environment
  6. Maintain confidentiality
  7. Be willing to publish retractions, errata, announcements, and apologies when needed
  8. Recuse themselves when there is a conflict of interest.



Peer Review

The peer review process is critical to all publishing and all scientific literature.  We provide a general guideline for reviewers on the website and encourage collegial and productive reviews of manuscripts.  The editors and editorial board will not tolerate hostile reviews. 


Responsibilities of Peer Reviewers: Reviewers should strive to

  1. Provide constructive and objective feedback
  2. Maintain a collegial environment
  3. Avoid conflicts of interest
  4. Allow freedom of expression
  5. Keep manuscripts confidential during the review process.



Manuscript Preparation and Submission

Responsibilities of Authors: Throughout the submission process, we expect authors to

  1. Follow the ethical guidelines of this journal and of their institutions
  2. Alert the editor if a retraction or correction are needed
  3. Ensure the originality of their work and not publish the same material in multiple journals.



Authorship and Contributorship

All authors listed should have contributed to the manuscript in some manner.  And, everyone who contributed to the research and manuscript should be included as an author.  Criteria for authorship include:

  1. Contribution to conception, design, data collection, data analysis
  2. Contribution to writing, editing, revision of manuscript draft that was critical to intellectual content
  3. Approve of final draft and be willing to be publicly responsible and accountable for the contents of the manuscript
  4. Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work and to ensure that research integrity was maintained.


Individuals who do not meet these criteria may be included in the acknowledgements section of the manuscript.




Plagiarism as defined by Elsevier, “is committed when one author uses another work (typically the work of another author) without permission, credit, or acknowledgment.  Plagiarism takes different forms, from literal copying to paraphrasing the work of another.”  Plagiarism may be in the text, in figures, tables, and may be from published or unpublished sources (e.g., lectures, presentations, etc.).


Plagiarism is not tolerated.  Submissions containing plagiarized material will not be published.  Material found to be plagiarized post-publication will be dealt with as outlined in “Retractions and Corrections”.


Self-plagiarism is also not supported by the journal.  Such self-plagiarism occurs when there is significant overlap between a submitted manuscript and one already published, whether in the same language or not.  Authors are to agree upon submission that the manuscript being submitted has not been submitted elsewhere or been previously published.  If self-plagiarism is found post-publication the manuscript may be retracted as outlined in “Retractions and Corrections”.




The editor and the editorial board are obliged to investigate and act on cases of misconduct.  If misconduct is suspected, a response will be sought from the accused. Depending on the nature of the accusation and the response, the editor and editorial board may pursue a formal investigation with a relevant regulatory body (e.g., a professional organization or the accused's employment).  To investigate cases of misconduct, the following the guidelines of COPE will be followed as appropriate. In cases of verified misconduct, manuscripts can be rejected or retracted as outlined in “Retractions and Corrections”.



Retractions and Corrections

The journal editor will consider retractions and corrections generally following the guidelines of COPE.  If an error is found in the original publication, an erratum will be published to identify the issue.  Retractions are reserved for articles that are severely flawed, contain plagiarism, are offensive, or may contain life-endangering content.  Retractions will involve an editorial statement and removal of the manuscript from the journal website.



Data and Supporting Evidence

We support data transparency and data sharing.  We encourage authors to share their data through the journal or in an appropriate repository to which they authors may refer in their publication.



For more on publication ethics here are additional resources:

Committee on Publication Ethics

Elsevier Publishing Ethics

Wiley Best Practice Guidelines on Research Integrity and Publishing Ethics