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Requirements for Editors and Editorial Board Members 

Chapter:
Ethical and Legal Considerations
Author(s):

Annette Flanagin

Requirements for Editors and Editorial Board Members

Editors may also have their objectivity influenced or biased by conflicts of interest.25-29 As a result, the ICMJE, CSE, and WAME recommend that editors follow policies on conflicts of interest that require disclosure of all relevant conflicts of interest (financial and nonfinancial) and also that they not participate in the review of or decisions on any manuscripts in which they may have a conflict of interest.2,17,18 Editors and journal editorial board members should never use information obtained during the review process for personal or professional gain. Editors and editorial board members should refrain from making any decisions or recommendations about manuscripts in which they have a personal, professional, or financial interest. Editors should also consider how to handle manuscripts from an author who is from the same institution as the editor and how to handle their own research and review articles. In the event that an editor works alone and has a conflict of interest with a particular manuscript, he or she should assign that manuscript to a guest editor or a member of the editorial board and should not take part in the review and editorial decision of such manuscripts. JAMA publishes a disclaimer with any articles that have an author who is also a decision-making editor for the journal to inform readers that the author-editor was not involved in the review or editorial decision.

Disclaimer: Dr Brown, the journal’s deputy editor, was not involved in the editorial review or decision to publish this article.

Editorials and announcements about journal policies written by journal editors are exempt from such procedures, but it may be prudent for editors to ask other editors or editorial board members to review and comment on these types of manuscripts (see 5.11, Editorial Responsibilities, Roles, Procedures, and Policies).

JAMA editors sign the following conflict of interest statement annually, which is kept confidential in the editorial office.

I agree that I will disqualify myself from reviewing, editing, or participating in editorial decisions about any JAMA and the Archives Journals submission that deals with a matter in which either I or a member of my immediate family has direct financial interest or a competing financial interest (eg, employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, patents, patent applications, royalties, grants, or compensated expert testimony). I also agree that I will promptly disclose in writing to the editor in chief of JAMA all potentially conflicting financial or other relevant conflicting interests pertaining to JAMA and the Archives Journals.

I agree that I will not use any confidential information obtained from my activities with JAMA and the Archives Journals to further my own or others' financial interests.

JAMA editorial board members also complete and sign the following conflict of interest and financial disclosure statement, which is kept confidential in the editorial office.

I agree that I will promptly disclose all potentially conflicting financial and other relevant interests pertaining to JAMA during the course of my service as a member of the JAMA Editorial Board (attach or describe below any current potential conflicts of interest). Financial interests to be disclosed can include, but are not limited to: honoraria, employment, stock ownership or options, patents, patent applications, grants, royalties, consultancies, expert witness activities, large gifts, or paid travel and accommodations.

I agree that I will not disclose or use any confidential information obtained from my activities with JAMA for my profit or advantage or that of anyone else, whether or not I remain a member of the JAMA Editorial Board.

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