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Ethical Policy

The journal

AoB PLANTS is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) and operates according to the organization’s codes of conduct for journal editors.

Editors and referees

Our editors and referees are required to declare any conflicts of interest relating to articles they are asked to evaluate. To ensure double-blind review, the identities of authors are not disclosed to referees, and the identities of referees are not disclosed to authors.

Papers submitted by the Chief Editor or by any member of the editorial board are handled by another editor, and these authors will not be able to use the manuscript submission and tracking system to identify the referees who review their work.


Authors are expected to adopt high ethical standards in their research and writing, ensuring that:

  • The submitted work or any of its essential content has not been previously published in a refereed journal and is not being considered for publication elsewhere. We may check submissions using anti-plagiarism software.
  • Previous relevant work by themselves and by others is properly cited.
  • Sources of funding and significant help are acknowledged.
  • Consents are obtained from parties with vested interests in the submitted work.
  • Their primary laboratory results are retained for at least 5 years and can be made available if there is any reason for them to be checked.

If a published paper or its essential content are found to have been published before or if other wrong-doing is verified, the Journal will take one or more of the following actions: (a) publishing a notice to this effect; (b) retracting the paper; (c) preventing the corresponding author from publishing in AoB PLANTS; (d) reporting the impropriety to the corresponding author’s co-authors, employer, head of department and funding body.


We willingly publish corrections when significant errors arise from author error (Corrigenda) or editorial mistakes (Errata).

If there is a serious complaint about the journal’s own procedures, the Chief Editor will confer with the corresponding author and any relevant members of the editorial board in order to resolve the problem. The AoB PLANTS Advisory Board and secondarily, The Annals of Botany Company (the Journal’s managers) will be consulted if further guidance is needed, and if the above procedures prove unacceptable, the matter will be referred for outside adjudication by COPE.