According to The Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE), potential conflicts of interest exist when there are financial, personal, or professional interests that might influence on the opinion of the reviewer or publisher and, as a result, affect the decision of the Editorial Board as regards the publication of the article.
The journal Literature of the Americas implies that by submitting a paper the author states that:
- all forms of financial support are acknowledged in the contribution;
- there are no commercial, financial, personal, and professional involvements that might present an appearance of a conflict of interests related to the submitted article.
If there is a conflict of interests, upon submission of a manuscript, authors may suggest excluding any specific reviewer from the peer review of their article.
The same obligations equally apply to editors or reviewers that will handle the paper: they should declare whether they have any conflicts of interests that may influence the editorial decision on its publication.
If there is a conflict of interests of the editor and the reviewer with the author of the article, the manuscript should be transferred, in obligatory order, to another editor or reviewer accordingly.
Articles should be evaluated fairly. The conflict of interests declared by any participant of the editing and reviewing process will not necessarily lead to rejection. The prime criterion in the manuscript’s evaluation is its research quality.