Publication Ethics and Malpractice Statement

General information

Acta Classica Universitatis Scientiarum Debreceniensis is a journal published by the Department of Classical Philology and Ancient History at the University of Debrecen, which provides scholarly papers in all areas of classical studies, including philology, history, literature, philosophy, religion, linguistics, archaeology and culture of the Ancient Greek and Roman worlds. ACD has an international editorial board and is subject to the highest standards of peer review. ACD is committed to upholding the highest standards of publication ethics and malpractice and therefore publishes in accordance with the rules laid down in the Chapter III of the Code of Conduct of the University of Debrecen, the Regulation of Scientific Research UD and the Code of Conduct and Best Practice Guidelines for Journal Editors developed by the COPE. We take our responsibility to authors, reviewers, and readers very seriously, and strive to ensure that all published materials are of the highest quality and accuracy. We recognize the importance of protecting the rights of authors, and will ensure that authors are given due credit for their work. We also recognize the importance of protecting the rights of reviewers, and will ensure that their comments and critiques of submitted material are kept confidential. Finally, we are committed to protecting the rights of readers, and will ensure that all published materials are free from plagiarism and copyright infringement.


Integrity in research

We encourage honesty in all aspects of research, as it is essential to the integrity of any scientific endeavour. Research must be conducted with due care, thoroughness and excellence to ensure that the results are valid and accurate. We are committed to transparency, and open communication between researchers should also be encouraged to help maintain standards of trustworthiness throughout the research process. We are also committed to respecting all research participants; they should never feel exploited or mistreated as a result of their involvement in a study. We take accountability seriously, as it is the key to upholding ethical practice within a field; both authors themselves and others involved have a responsibility not only for their own work, but also for that which falls short of expected standards by others. Editorial independence can never be compromised by competing interests, fear or any other corporate, commercial, financial or political influence, nor can there ever be discrimination against anyone involved in authoring, editing or peer reviewing on the basis of identity or personal characteristics. Finally, we make active efforts to encourage submissions from scholars from diverse backgrounds who have been historically underrepresented in academic journals, so that everyone is given a fair chance to contribute to the advancement of knowledge and our understanding of the world around us.

Abusive behaviour or correspondence towards our staff, authors and other members of the publishing process will not be tolerated by the editorial board. We believe that everyone involved in the publishing process deserves to be treated with respect and dignity. As such, we reserve the right to take action against any act of abuse against us or those working on our behalf. Actions taken may vary depending on the severity of the abuse, but may include withdrawing consideration of a manuscript submission, challenging clearly abusive peer review comments or book reviews, and reporting to the relevant authorities where appropriate. In addition, we will ensure that appropriate measures are taken to prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future involving us and/or individuals associated with us.


Authors' responsibilities

Authors must ensure that their work is accurate and free from plagiarism. They should also cite the work of others accurately, giving appropriate credit to the original source. The research results are required to be accurately reported without omitting relevant information or fabricating results. Authors should also strive for originality in their works, avoiding plagiarism at all costs as this could lead to legal action against them due to copyright infringement laws. Authors must take care not commit fundamental mistakes such as incorrect citations, wrong facts etc., since these errors can have serious repercussions both professionally and ethically speaking.

Authors should ensure that all formatting guidelines are strictly adhered to when preparing manuscripts prior to submission - failure to do so may result in automatic rejection, regardless of the quality of the content, for failure to meet the required standards and expectations set out in the Authors' Guidelines for ACD.

ACD does not charge the authors any fees for manuscript processing, publication or submission, and neither does it pay them any royalties. We believe in providing our authors with a platform for publication that is open and fair. As such, we require all authors who wish to have their work published through us to participate in our peer review process. This ensures that only quality articles will be accepted for publication, giving readers access only the most reliable source of information available.

Every paper submitted to the ACD should make a new and interesting contribution to our understanding of classical antiquity. Submitted manuscripts are reviewed by editorial board members and also by outside experts. The journal has an international scientific committee and the evaluation of the contributions will be done with a double-blind peer-review procedure with anonymous reviewers.

Authors must honestly disclose any potential conflicts of interest when submitting their manuscript for review, so that editors can properly evaluate its merits without bias from outside influences. Competing interests can take many forms, such as financial relationships between authors and the organisations they study, personal relationships with other researchers who may be cited in their work, or even political views held by authors that may influence how they interpret their results.

Authors have an obligation to notify journal editors or editorial boards immediately if any errors are discovered. It is important for authors to cooperate with journal editors or editorial boards when errors occur, as this helps to ensure accuracy and reliability in published work. Authors should provide accurate references and indicate whether any financial support was received during the course of their studies, so that readers have full transparency into how the work was conducted.

ACD is committed to providing original and unique content to its readers. As such, the journal does not reprint material that has already been published elsewhere. It welcomes contributions from authors from all around the world, regardless of their location or nationality. While the primary language of publication is English, submissions in French, German, Italian, and Latin are also accepted.

The importance of accurately stating authors' affiliations in an article cannot be underestimated. It is essential that the reader can easily identify the institution(s) with which each author is associated. This helps to ensure transparency about potential biases, but it also provides valuable contextual insight into how knowledgeable someone might be about certain topics covered in said publications.

In most cases there is only one author. However, if there are multiple authors, it is important to note that each author is considered the primary author and should be listed alphabetically unless otherwise requested and agreed by all parties. It is important that they agree on how their work will be credited. This may include deciding who will appear first in the listing, or whether someone wants more credit than just being named as one of several authors on a piece of work. Clear communication between all parties involved will help ensure that everyone's contributions are properly recognised and valued throughout the writing process.


Peer-review process

Peer review is essential to help maintain the standards of the publications we publish. It takes 12 months from submission to publication (we receive articles by 1st of September each year for the following year's issue). On receipt of a submitted article, the Editor-in-Chief will decide whether it is within the aims and scope of the journal. If it does, the manuscript will be anonymously reviewed by academics to determine its suitability for publication, without either party knowing the identity of the other or any potential conflicts between them. In order to ensure that this procedure is carried out accurately and equitably, it is the responsibility of the Editor-in-Chief to maintain the anonymity of reviewers and authors throughout the entire process. This is done to avoid any potential conflicts of interest between reviewers and authors. Reviewers are encouraged to use the review form (which is available in OJS after logging in) to evaluate the submitted manuscript. Although the Editor-in-Chief may invite certain pieces of content, he or she is nonetheless responsible for ensuring that all submissions undergo blind peer review.

Refused articles will not be stored. An article may be rejected for publication if it fails a plagiarism test, if reviewers consider it to be of poor quality, or if the submitted manuscript fails to meet the formatting requirements. In cases where an article fails one or more criteria, authors have options before resubmitting their work for review by the editors. They can review any feedback they receive from reviewers and make changes accordingly.

Reviewed papers are treated as confidential prior to publication. As a professional, it is important to understand that no information about a submitted manuscript will be disclosed to anyone other than the corresponding author, reviewers, potential reviewers, and other editorial advisors as appropriate. This ensures that all authors can be confident that their work will be treated with discretion and respect for their intellectual property rights. Our editors are held accountable for strictly adhering to these protocols when handling confidential data related to submissions under consideration by our journal's editorial board members or peer-reviewers during review processes, where identities remain undisclosed throughout the process until final acceptance/rejection decisions are made publicly available through official channels such as email notifications sent at the conclusion of the process(es).

If both reviewers find the article suitable, we accept it for publication. After accepting an article for publication, we send it back until 1st of February to the author to correct eventual typographical errors, some minor mistakes or look up and add missing citation.

We recognise the importance of peer review in scholarly publishing and take very seriously our role in facilitating rigorous, fair and effective peer review for all our publications. To ensure this, we provide appropriate systems and support for reviewers. We also encourage them to familiarise themselves with best practice guidelines for peer review, such as COPE's Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers.


Feedback management

In case of any complaint about the editorial process or content of an article, it is essential that those concerns be addressed in a timely fashion. The editor-in-chief or technical editor should be contacted if there are complaints related to either area. The editorial team takes feedback seriously, and will evaluate all reports and take appropriate action based on the results of the investigation.


Treatment of research misconduct

ACD firmly opposes all forms of research misconduct, including falsification or fabrication of data, or plagiarism in proposing, performing, or reviewing research, or in reporting research results, and will not publish any article that does not meet the ethical standards of the journal. The reviewers are responsible to detect any research misconduct and to notify the Editor-in-Chief who will prevent the article from being published.

In case of detection of research misconduct in already published issues, ACD investigate the allegations and reserves the right to initiate ethics proceedings against the author, withdraw the article from the online platform and publish a correction in the next issue. Retractions are issued when an article contains significant errors or has been found guilty of plagiarism or fabrication. Corrections may also be made when there is an error in the data reported in an article that does not affect the conclusions drawn from it. In the event of an infringement, we shall additionally pursue the appropriate legal action.

The editors of ACD have a responsibility to ensure that the published articles are original and of high quality. To this end, we use plagiarism detection softwares available to the University of Debrecen for identifying instances of professional plagiarism or other forms of academic misconduct. If any form of plagiarism is detected in a submission, it will be rejected immediately, as the publication of such material would not only damage the reputation of the journal, but could also lead to legal action against both authors and publishers. In addition to these pre-publication tools, we also take action post-publication if a case or suspicion of plagiarism that was not detected in the initial peer-review process arises.


Fundamental mistakes

A fundamental flaw is defined as any flaw that significantly affects the accuracy, validity, or reliability of the results presented in an article. Examples include incorrect data analysis techniques, inappropriate citation practices, or failure to provide sufficient evidence to support conclusions drawn from research findings. All authors submitting work are expected to rigorously check their manuscripts prior to submission and to ensure that all sources are accurately cited throughout the paper, so that facts or ideas taken from other authors' work aren't misrepresented without giving due credit where credit is due. In addition, all figures should be clearly labelled with appropriate captions and tables should always contain accurate information; both of these elements will help to improve the reader's understanding and avoid misunderstandings about the results reported in a study.

In cases where fundamental errors are identified after publication, corrections can generally take one of two forms: either retraction (removal) of the entire article, if necessary, or publication of errata (corrective statements) if only minor changes need to be addressed. Corrections may also involve a re-evaluation of the peer-review processes used prior to publication, if deemed necessary by the editors who oversee each stage involved in the successful publication of an article. Ultimately, however, publishers strive for accuracy in all aspects of scholarly writing; therefore, this policy serves as a reminder that high standards must always be maintained in the conduct of scholarly research in any given subject area.


Criticism and defamation

While we recognise and protect people's right to express critical views objectively based on verifiable facts or the consensus opinion of experts in the field, articles or reviews containing nasty remarks that are self-serving rather than helpful will not be tolerated by our journal editor, as this could lead to further problems with breaches of libel law in the future. We therefore ask all authors and reviewers submitting material through these channels to adhere strictly to these guidelines when expressing opinions within their submissions, to avoid any potential risks associated with inadvertently publishing defamatory material.


Image manipulation, falsification and fabrication

The ethical standards of academic research require that all authors provide accurate and reliable data in their publications. This includes not only the accuracy of the information, but also any images or graphics used to support conclusions or claims made within a paper. All images submitted to a journal should be clearly labeled and described, and any images that are used from third-party sources should be clearly credited. When submitting to ACD, the following policy outlines acceptable practices for image manipulation, falsification and fabrication:

First, authors must clearly identify any changes they have made to an image before submitting it for publication. Any changes should be limited to improving clarity or making minor adjustments, such as cropping out irrelevant parts of an image, without changing the overall content. All alterations must be documented in detail so that other researchers can reproduce them if necessary; this documentation should include a description of how each alteration was made and the appropriate software settings used during processing (if applicable). Authors using digital editing tools are expected to retain unaltered original versions wherever possible, so that these can be provided for verification if required by editors/reviewers.

Second, fabrication of images is strictly prohibited under all circumstances, unless explicitly authorised by the Editor-in-Chief prior to submission (e.g. for educational purposes). Fabrication involves creating new material from scratch using digital editing tools, rather than simply manipulating existing material; this type of manipulation has no place in scientific work and will not be tolerated under any circumstances within the scope of our journal. Finally, falsifying data is also unacceptable behaviour, whether by traditional methods (i.e. writing up false results) or by digitally manipulating images/data sets beyond what would reasonably be considered "enhancing clarity" as outlined above; such actions will result in immediate rejection without consideration for review, given their serious implications for scientific integrity.

The editorial board of ACD takes issues of accuracy very seriously and expect our authors to adhere strictly to these guidelines when preparing manuscripts for publication with us - failure to do so may result in disciplinary action being taken against those responsible, depending on the severity of the issue(s).



ACD takes transparency very seriously. Authors must be transparent about their sources and methodology to avoid misrepresenting the findings and conclusions of their research. First and foremost, citation accuracy is of the utmost significance. Transparency on where data was obtained, how it was collected, and what procedures were used to analyze it can increase readers' confidence in the correctness of results provided in an article or paper. In addition, as part of the efforts to increase the transparency of research papers, detailed information about any potential conflicts of interest should be included, as this could affect how one interprets certain findings presented by authors with a vested interest in particular topics being studied.


Referee’s liability

The journal's policy on referees' responsibilities is of paramount importance in ensuring the quality and integrity of published research. Referees are expected to make a significant contribution to editorial decisions by providing unbiased feedback in a timely manner. In order for their input to be meaningful, referees must maintain confidentiality about any material they review and remain objective in their evaluation of submissions.

When referencing sources or citing other work, it is essential that referees provide accurate information from reliable sources such as peer-reviewed journals or reputable websites. In addition, any potential conflicts of interest should be disclosed prior to reviewing material, including situations where there may be an incompatibility between reviewing a paper and your own interests (e.g. if you have previously worked on related topics).

By adhering strictly to these guidelines on confidentiality and objectivity, and by responding promptly to submissions, reviewers can help to ensure that only high quality work is accepted for scientific publication, while protecting authors from unfair criticism based solely on personal bias or interests that are not relevant to the review.


Editors’s liability

The editorial team of a ACD is responsible for maintaining the integrity and accuracy of its content. As such, editors have certain responsibilities that must be taken into account when developing policies for their publication. Our primary responsibility is to ensure fairness in all aspects of publication, from manuscript selection to final review and acceptance decisions. This includes ensuring that authors are given equal consideration regardless of race, gender, or any other factor unrelated to the quality or relevance of the work submitted. In addition, we strive to maintain the confidentiality of submissions and editorial decisions; this ensures fairness among competing authors while protecting the intellectual property rights associated with the submitted work.

Our Publication Ethics and Maplractice Statement can be downloaded as a PDF here.