What are the reasons for the delay in the publication of a scientific article?

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After submission of documents for publication of an article to the editorial office of the journal, delays may occur, which have a number of reasons. Knowing about them helps overcome the long waiting process. Let's take a look at the most common ones.

What are the reasons for the delay in the publication of a scientific article?

The first reason – the application was drawn up incorrectly

The primary condition when submitting documents for the publication of an article is the correct filling of author's data in the application. It is necessary to take this process seriously and responsibly because any inaccuracies and errors at the first stage can create difficulties for indexing research in the future.

The second reason – the entire review period

This is the longest stage, which most often delays the moment of publication. It depends on many factors. Let's look at everything in more detail.

• If a researcher chooses the Scopus database for publication, the publication of their article can take from 9 months to 2 years, in Web of Science – a year or longer. The reason for this is the long article review period. The reviewers are experts on the subject area of the article with at least 3 publications in the last three years in the same area. The analysis of the article is performed anonymously. Experts look at the relevance of the study, what value it brings to the scientific community. Then they decide whether to publish the article or not. It may happen that the opinions of two scientists differ. Then a third party is brought in, who becomes decisive in the peer review procedure. This is also a factor in the delay in publication.

• The review phase can be delayed due to a lack of reviewers. Not every reputable scientist has a lot of free time to evaluate the works of other authors. Even more so, if they are actively engaged in their own research.

• To initially secure the work from long consideration or refusal to publish, it must be translated into academic English and given to a native speaker for proofreading. In addition, the work must be properly laid out and structured. Reviewers are very strict about this requirement and do not allow plagiarism in the articles.

• A poorly covered subject of the study and research idea can also cause a delay in reviewing and many questions to the article.

The longest delays in publication of research are found in the social sciences, humanities, and business sciences. The fastest peer review is among the mathematical, physical, and chemical sciences. By following these tips, you can minimise the possibility of a long review or rejection.

The third reason – neglect of publication ethics

Publication ethics implies that an author submits a unique article to one journal at a time. Only in case of refusal after reviewing can the scientist sends the article for consideration to another journal.

An author can ignore publication ethics and submit an article to multiple journals at once. If their study undergoes rigorous peer review and is published in more than one journal at the same time, this will create problems and is guaranteed to entail litigation between publications for the copyright to this article. The reputation of the second journal to print this article will be compromised. The scientific community may think that it published a plagiarised study. Such incompetent actions on the part of the author threaten the latter with exclusion from the database and litigation. This will create big problems for the scientist in their future scientific activities.

Трудности с коммуникацией и затруднение в произведении оплаты платежей

The fourth reason – communication difficulties and difficulty in making payments

It so happens that an article has successfully passed a long and serious stage of peer review, and the scientist has to pay the publication costs. They send payment from their country to another, but unforeseen difficulties arise: the payment is delayed at some stage or is completely lost. Then the clarification of this issue by foreign specialists begins, for communication with whom one needs to be fluent in English. To avoid this situation, it is important to understand that the legal and banking systems of different countries differ from each other. Each state has its mechanisms and principles for the functioning of the financial system. The scientist should take this into account when making a money transfer. Subsequently, it is very difficult for the researcher to cope with the problem that has arisen. This takes away their time and energy, creating additional obstacles. Then what is the best way to prevent this from happening?

The best solution would be if, at the beginning of their scientific and publishing career, the scientist approached a company that provides intermediary services. These organisations employ specialists who work from the beginning of negotiations with journals to publication, helping the scientist to focus on research. The company's employees are fluent in English and have extensive experience in solving the most difficult problems. Their well-established system of communication with foreign banks helps deal with any problem as quickly as possible, in contrast to the author's unassisted attempts.

The fifth reason – the scientific journal itself did not publish the article within the specified terms

This is more related to an organisational reason or some force majeure circumstances that may arise in the editorial office of the journal.

Another option is possible, when the situation with the final decision is not completely clear, and the material is given to the author for revision. Within 30 days, the author makes changes and re-submits the article for consideration. After that, the final verdict is issued. In case of a positive review, the article is placed in the "portfolio" of the editorial office for publication.

The Scientific Publications – Publ.Science company assists in the publication of scientific articles in international citation services. A team of specialists supervises the article from the beginning of its layout, editing and up to publication in Scopus, Web of Science. The article is guaranteed to pass peer review and be successfully published in international journals without any delay and in a short time frame. Contact our specialists for advice, and they will help you take the first steps towards our cooperation.

As a reminder, we have recently published an article "What can researchers face if they publish their articles in a low-quality journal?"

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