Research Ethics Regulations

Research Ethics Regulations of the Korean Environmental Sciences Society

Enacted November 20, 2008
Revised April 09, 2021

Article 1 (Name)

These regulations are called the “Research Ethics Regulations of the Korean Environmental Sciences Society.”

Article 2 (Purpose)

The purpose of these regulations concerns the Research Ethics Committee (hereafter, “Committee”) and its review of fraudulent research activities involving members of the Korean Environmental Sciences Society (hereafter, “Society”).

Article 3 (Definition of Fraudulent Research Activity)

If any of the following occurs during the process of research, journal presentation, or publication, they will be regarded as fraudulent activities.

  1. 1. Forgery: acts of falsely creating and presenting nonexistent data or research results;
  2. 2. Tampering: acts of severely skewing the research details or results by artificially modifying or deleting data or research results;
  3. 3. Plagiarism: acts of pirating another individual’s ideas, writings, research content (process, results, records), etc., without proper permission or citation;
  4. 4. Duplicate Submissions or Publications: failure to inform the previous journal that a paper that has already been presented will be newly submitted to another journal, or submitting or publishing a paper without notifying the new journal that the paper has already been presented;
  5. 5. Reasonable Author Allocation: failure to grant author qualifications to those who made academic contributions to the research content or results without a legitimate reason or the granting of author qualifications to those who did not make any academic contribution as a means of expressing thanks or respect; and
  6. 6. Other acts that severely harm the integrity of the study.

Article 4 (Author)

  1. ① The committee is judged as the author of the submitted articles only if all four items below are completed.
    1. 1. Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work;
    2. 2. Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content;
    3. 3. Final approval of the version to be published; and
    4. 4. Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.
  2. ② In submitting a paper, an author shall disclose any actual and potential conflict in financial, personal, and academic interest. Where there is a potential conflict of interest with members of the Editorial Board or Committee, the author shall declare this at the earliest opportunity and withdraw from the review proceeding.
  3. ③ The scope of “individuals in special relationships” shall include minors (a person under 19 years of age) and family members (spouses, children, etc.). When submitting a paper related to any such individual, an author shall declare that fact and provide relevant documents to prove such fact. In the case where a co-author, also an individual in a special relationship with the author, is found to have committed research misconduct, a strict investigation into the allegation of misconduct shall be conducted and the author shall furnish a notice of research misconduct to the relevant institution that profited from the paper.
  4. ④ In principle, the revision of the authors provided in the first submission is impossible; however, in particular cases, it can be decided through the discussion of the editorial committee. (only in case the explanatory materials are submitted in the progress of evaluation) Furthermore, the resubmission after the withdrawal of the corresponding paper that is in the progress of evaluation is possible if there is a request from the authors.

Article 5 (Review Procedures)

The Committee will review matters regarding the research ethics of members through the following procedures:

  1. ① Bring up research ethics violations: If a problem regarding fraudulent research activities is raised, the chairperson will gather the relevant materials and verify the credibility of the issue.
  2. ② Convening the Committee: When the credibility of the issue is verified, the chairperson will introduce this issue to the Committee as an agenda item.
  3. ③ Preliminary investigation
    1. 1. There must be up to three people, including the chairperson, to determine whether research ethics were violated through a preliminary investigation within 30 days of the agenda item being introduced to the Committee.
    2. 2. If it is determined during the preliminary investigation that a main investigation should not be conducted, a detailed written description for the reasoning must be given to the informant within 10 days of the decision.
  4. ④ Main investigation
    1. 1. If the Committee determines that there was a research ethics violation, the issue will be reviewed and decided through a main investigation within 60 days. Consultation may be received from relevant departments in the Society for the investigation, and a special investigation committee composed of specialists both inside and outside the Society may be organized if necessary.
    2. 2. The Committee must give the examinee an opportunity to state opinions in accordance with the regulations of Article 8, paragraph 1. The examinee must be given an opportunity to present objections or a defense before the results of the main investigation are finalized. If the examinee does not take exception to these regulations, he/she will be considered as having no objections.
  5. ⑤ Committee establishment and decision: The Committee is established according to the attendance of the majority of members, and decisions are made through the majority of members in attendance.
  6. ⑥ Board of Directors Notification: The chairperson must notify the board of directors regarding the results of the Committee’s review.

Article 6 (Board of Directors Decisions and Notification)

The board of directors will decide on disciplinary action based on the results of the Committee’s review and notify the examinee of the decision. The board may also notify the external institution or complainant of the decision if necessary.

Article 7 (Records and Announcements)

The investigation details must be recorded and stored, and the investigation results must be announced.

Article 8 (Disciplinary Measures)

  1. ① Disciplinary measures will be presented to the Committee regarding an individual who has violated research ethics regulations in accordance with Chapter 8, Article 8 of this Society’s articles of association, and disciplinary action may be taken regarding the results though the decision of the board of directors.
  2. ② Types of disciplinary action
    1. 1. Deleting from list of papers in the academic journal;
    2. 2. Prohibiting future paper submissions (for at least three years);
    3. 3. Making a homepage announcement;
    4. 4. Notifying the National Research Foundation of Korea of the relevant details;
    5. 5. Dismissing the individual from an office in the Society;
    6. 6. Revoking member qualifications; or
    7. 7. Other disciplinary action as determined by the Committee;
  3. ③ The Committee must continuously manage records regarding fraudulent research activities and verify whether disciplinary measures are being implemented.

Article 9 (Objections)

  1. 1. Individuals whose actions are deemed fraudulent research activities may submit a written objection within one month of the notification date.
  2. 2. The Committee must review the validity of this objection and may re-examine the decision.

Article 10 (Identity Protection)

  1. 1. The identity of the individual who has sued for fraudulent research activities must not be disclosed to outsiders.
  2. 2. The identity of the examinee must also not be disclosed to outsiders until his/her actions are determined to be fraudulent research activities.

Article 11 (Editing Committee and Paper Examiner Ethics Regulations)

  1. 1. The Editing Committee is responsible for determining whether to publish submitted papers, and members must respect the character and independence of the authors.
  2. 2. The Editing Committee must handle all submitted papers with equality based solely on the quality of the paper and submission regulations, regardless of the author’s gender, age, affiliated institution, prejudice, or personal friendships, to publish the journal.
  3. 3. The Editing Committee must request an evaluation of submitted papers by an examiner with professional knowledge of the relevant field and the ability to make fair judgments. When a request is made for a review, efforts must be made to avoid examiners who are friends or enemies of the author to ensure the objectivity of evaluations. Examiners from the same institution as the author must be excluded from the review.
  4. 4. The examiner must evaluate the paper submitted by the Editing Committee of this Society within the period prescribed in the review regulations, then notify the Editing Committee of the evaluation results. If the content of the submitted paper differs from the examiner’s major field of study, the Editing Committee must be immediately notified of this fact.
  5. 5. The examiner must provide a fair review in accordance with objective standards while evaluating submitted papers. The examiner must not prevent the paper from being published without providing an objective basis. The paper must also not be evaluated without having been thoroughly read.
  6. 6. The evaluation results of the paper should be clearly stated in the paper examination statement, and detailed reasoning must also be included for sections that require supplementation. The examiner must use polite and gentle expressions when necessary and must not use expressions that demean or insult the author.
  7. 7. The examiner must keep confidential the details of a paper that is being reviewed. Showing the submitted paper to another person or discussing the content of the paper with another person—other than for consultation purposes—to evaluate the paper is not recommended. The content of the paper must not be cited without the author’s consent before it is published in the journal to which it was submitted.
  8. 8. Those who are intending to conduct a human subject study in accordance with the Bioethics and Safety Act must receive a review from the Institutional Review Board (IRB) before beginning the study. The Editing Committee may require the submission of documents that verify whether approval from the IRB was obtained or whether the study is exempt from review.
  9. 9. In the context of research involving humans, sex and gender shall be correctly classified and reported in the sex-gender category, and where both male and female subjects participate, the details on the comparative analysis of the results derived from study under the same conditions shall be described. For research using cells or animals, it shall report the source, certification, and biological characteristics of cell strains or animals, study both sexes, and describe the results related to gender differences. Moreover, in the case of single-sex research on humans, animals, and cells, valid reasoning and basis shall be provided for doing so.
  10. 10. An online research ethics training must be conducted for members of the Society, and an offline research ethics training must be conducted every year at the general assembly.
  11. 11. The Copy Killer paper plagiarism prevention system must be used to check for plagiarism.

Article 12 (Research Ethics Compliance Pledge)

The submitter is required to submit a research ethics pledge to verify his/her compliance with the research ethics regulations.

Article 13 (Regulation Revisions)

Revisions to these regulations will adhere to the Society’s regulation revision procedures.

Supplementary Provisions

  1. 1. These regulations will be enforced starting from the date of enactment.
  2. 2. The revisions to these regulations will be enforced starting October 20, 2017.
  3. 3. The revisions to these regulations will be enforced starting March 19, 2020.
  4. 4. The revisions to these regulations will be enforced starting December 16, 2020.
  5. 5. The revisions to these regulations will be enforced starting April 09, 2021.