Competing interests are a natural aspect of academic and professional work, arising from personal, commercial, political, academic, or financial engagements that might affect judgments about a manuscript. As part of our commitment to ethical publishing, SAJST requires full disclosure of competing interests from authors, reviewers, and editors. This transparency helps us maintain the integrity of our review process and publication standards.
Authors must disclose any competing interests that might influence the perceived validity of their work.
Reviewers should decline reviews where a competing interest may affect their impartiality and must disclose potential conflicts when agreeing to review.
Editors and advisory board members are expected to declare any competing interests and recuse themselves from handling submissions where conflicts exist.
SAJST asks for disclosures of interests going back three years but encourages transparency about any relevant outside this timeframe. Additionally, authors should explicitly state all funding sources in their manuscript, detailing the role of these sources in the research and publication process.
Articles would be published with statements or supporting documents declaring:
- Authors’ conflicts of interest; and
- Sources of support for the work, including sponsor names along with explanations of the role of those sources if any in study design; collection, analysis, and interpretation of data; writing of the report; the decision to submit the report for publication; or a statement declaring that the supporting source had no such involvement; and
- Whether the authors had access to the study data, with an explanation of the nature and extent of access, including whether access is on-going.
To support the above statements, editors may request that authors of a study sponsored by a funder with a proprietary or financial interest in the outcome sign a statement, such as “I had full access to all of the data in this study and I take complete responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis.”