Editorial Policies, Guidelines, and Publication Ethics & Malpractice Statement

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Below are BCPHR’s Editorial Policies, Guidelines, and Publication Ethics and Malpractice Statement.

Our policies are consistent with the Code of Conduct and Best Practice Guidelines for Journal EditorsCode of Conduct for Journal Publishers, the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) Core Practices, the World Association of Medical Editors, the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, the Foundation for Biomedical Research, and the Declaration of Helsinki.

These guidelines ensure that all manuscripts published by BCPHR reflect the highest research integrity. Articles in the journal are consistent with accepted best practices in the fields of clinical and public health, with a focus on social justice and health equity.

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BCPHR Reach and Access

BCPHR (formerly known as HPHR and Harvard Public Health Review) is an academic, peer-reviewed public health journal. The Journal has undergone significant expansion in its scope and format since launching in 2014. On average, we reach approximately 40K+ readers each year. 

BCPHR believes in promoting knowledge dissemination and cultivating discussion. We are an open-access journal with no fees or associated subscriptions required to access content. To help maximize the impact of our content, BCPHR is equipped with a DOI (10.54111/0001) and is currently indexed by JSTOR. We publish only online and hold the electronic ISSN number: 2643-6450

invites submissions from emerging and established researchers representing diverse settings, including universities, nonprofit/nongovernmental organizations, hospitals and other health settings, community-based organizations, and others. All submissions are expected to speak to the mission and vision of the Journal and address public health issues within an evidence-based and health equity framework.

To ensure a dynamic showcase for contributors’ diverse research interests, talents, and creativity, BCPHR seeks a range of materials. Complete submission guidelines and templates are provided in the Submissions section. You may go straight to the submissions portal here

Fair Play and Editorial Independence

Editors evaluate submitted manuscripts exclusively on the basis of their academic merit (importance, originality, study’s validity, clarity) and its relevance to the journal’s mission and vision (scope and aims), without regard to the authors’ race, gender, sexual orientation, ethnic origin, citizenship, religious belief, political philosophy, or institutional affiliation. Decisions to edit and publish are not determined by the policies of governments or any other agencies outside of BCPHR. The Editors-in-Chief have full authority over the entire editorial content of BCPHR and the timing of publication of that content. 

Special/Topic Editions

BCPHR accepts articles on all subjects that address issues of public through the lenses of social justice and health equity. In general, authors identify a specific edition associated with the article’s subject area; however, authors are not required to do so. The editorial board ultimately reserves the right to assign an article to a specific special edition to ensure that the article is as discoverable, readable, and citeable as possible. BCPHR does publish general editions, but finds special editions have more appeal and engagement with our readers. Special editions are led by BCPHR’s deputy editors and editors-in-chief. They reach out to potential subject matter experts to submit pieces as well as lead the editorial review of pieces submitted directly to BCPHR via Scholastica. They assign submitted pieces to Associate Editors to manage peer review and make recommendations related to acceptance. Final decisions are made by the Editors-in-Chief. 

Expedite Publishing and Article Processing Charge (AFC) Fees

Expedite Campaign Publishing Periods

BCPHR holds three expedited publishing periods per year. During these times, articles undergo expedited peer review. Blogs are not peer-reviewed, but receive immediate review from BCPHR editorial staff. Successfully reviewed materials can be published in as little as 2 weeks.


Because of the labor involved in expediting manuscripts, authors who undergo the fast-tracked peer review process and retract their manuscripts will receive a $100 fine. BCPHR also will alert the authors’ home institutions of the retraction. Authors also may be barred from submitting to BCPHR again in the future.

During non-expedite review periods, the peer review process has a 6-12 week turnaround, with publication online in 8-12 weeks.

Authors are notified upfront of this requirement.   

Non-Expedite and Expedite Publishing Periods

BCPHR’s Article Processing Charges (APC) are as follows:

  • Non-Expedite

    • $30.00 submission-reading fee
    • $250 per article
    • $150 per blog


    • $15 submission/reading fee
    • $450 per article
    • $250 per blog

Terms and Conditions

– We do not accept articles by email and APC are not waived except under very specific circumstances: 

– We do consider requests to waive fees during non-expedite periods on a case-by-case basis for authors from and currently working and living in low-income countries. For more information, contact us at [email protected].

Authorship and Contributorship

BCPHR identifies authorship at the beginning of each published piece and contributorship or acknowledgments within a statement at the end of each piece as appropriate.

BCPHR follows the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals (ICMJE Recommendations 2019) regarding authorship. These recommendations encompass four criteria:  


  • Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; 
  • Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; 
  • Final approval of the version to be published; and
  • Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

BCPHR requires that all those designated as authors should meet these criteria for authorship.

Authors must be individual human being; we do not recognize private or public entities and organizations as authors.

These authorship guidelines reserve the status of authorship to those who deserve credit and can take responsibility for the research presented.

Authors must be able to identify who is responsible for specific and other parts of the work.  

Submitting authors should provide assurance that all authors included in a paper fulfill the criteria of authorship. We also ask for assurance all authors have been included and had the opportunity to review and approve submitted manuscripts and materials.  

follows Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) guidelines in the vent of author disagreements. If not satisfactory resolution can be found in these disagreements, we will withdraw the publication author.  


Authors may be identified as those who have made substantial contribution to the work (which may include all or some of the following: conception of ideas, collection or interpretation of data, and drafting/revision) and are accountable (including in accuracy and integrity) for the work as a whole.

Corresponding Author

This is the author who oversees engagement with BCPHR during the publication process and beyond.

Author Name Change

Requests regarding a changed/updated author name may be sent via Scholastica and unless requested, will not include a notice of correction upon the manuscript.


Contributors may include non-author contributors or collaborators. Contributors are identified as participants who have provided material or intellectual contribution to a piece such as individuals who have advised on process, been involved in data collection, or contributed their expertise. All listed contributors/collaborators must be aware of and have provided permission of their inclusion within the submission. It is the responsibility of the corresponding author to ensure this has been done prior to submission.


An acknowledgement section will be provided at the end of each manuscript as needed. 

Please note: Any addition or removal of authors must be approved by all authors and include a written and signed statement ascertaining the change sent via Scholastica. 

Data Reporting Guidelines & Ethical Oversight

Before a manuscript is accepted for publication, if applicable, authors must confirm that ethical requirements and standards have been met. As such, authors must provide proof of ethical approval to the Journal.

We align with the EQUATOR network (Enhancing the QUAlity and Transparency Of health Research), an international initiative that seeks to improve the reliability and value of published health research literature through production of clear reporting of methods and results, enabling critical appraisal of the manuscript.

All research articles should be written in accordance with the relevant research reporting guideline, this will ensure that you provide enough information for editors, peer reviewers and readers to understand how the research was performed and to judge whether the findings are likely to be reliable.  

All guidelines are available on the Equator Network website; those most applicable to BCPHR editors include:

If you are not sure which guidelines are the most relevant for your type of study, use the online tool developed by the EQUATOR Network and Penelope Research.


Trial Registration

In accordance to guidelines set forth in the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), BCPHR will only consider papers reporting registered clinical trials.

Institution Review Board Approval and Consent

BCPHR requires all manuscripts to be based on studies that recognize human and animal rights. Studies must have been approved by an institutional review board prior to commencement. All participants must have undergone an informed consent process, with proof of completion kept on record.

Animal-based research must align with the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) .

Data Access and Retention

Authors may be asked to provide the raw data of their study together with the manuscript for editorial review and should be prepared to make the data publicly available if practicable. In any event, authors should ensure accessibility of such data to other competent professionals for at least 10 years after publication (preferably via an institutional or subject-based data repository or other data center), provided that the confidentiality of the participants can be protected and legal rights concerning proprietary data do not preclude their release.

Submission Process

It is imperative that authors comply with the submission guidelines below. If you do not follow these steps, your article will not be reviewed and will be desk rejected. 

BCPHR manages manuscripts through its submissions portal called Scholastica. Click here for specific details about how to develop your manuscript, prepare it for submission, andsubmit it to Scholastica. All authors should provide an institutional email address and ORCID iD.

All submitted articles undergo an initial editorial assessment. Those deemed in alignment by editorial guidelines qualify for peer review. Those that are not in alignment with our mission or do not fit our submission guidelines are desk rejected. Desk rejections cannot be appealed.  

Articles are peer-reviewed by two different peer reviewers who make recommendations for acceptance, revise and resubmit, and reject. Decisions are finalized by editors-in-chief. Note that revise and resubmit is not a rejection at BCPHR; but generally indication of a desire to publish a piece after submission.

Accepted articles generally require only minor revision or updates prior to publication.

Rejected articles are those that are not being considered for publication.  

1. Identify Your Submission Type

BCPHR currently accepts the following types of pieces in response to its Calls for Submissions

  1. Original Research Articles describe the results of original research of public health importance. Preferred length is 3,000 words max (excluding References, Figures, and Tables). Longer submissions considered on case-by-case basis.

  2. Review Articles may be systematic (with or without meta-analysis) or narrative, and must address a specific question or issue relevant to public health. Preferred length is 500-3,000 words.

  3. Research Letters are brief articles detailing original research in progress that are 750 words or less (excluding References, Figures, and Tables).

  1. Commentaries address public health issues written from an evidence-based perspective. Point-Counterpoints are often solicited special editorials on a specific public health issue from opposing vantage points or responses to previously published articles. Preferred length of these submissions is 500-3,000 words.

  2. Atypical Articles are unique, creative articles (such as research protocols, essays, poems, policy memos, ethical treatises, etc.) related to the field of public health. These pieces typically are no more than 1,000 words.

  3. Electronic Media encompass recordings of interviews, editorials, and so on. It also includes BCPHR Author Insight videos from accepted authors. Pieces must be accompanied by a description of 200-300 words. Authors are responsible for obtaining all reprint permissions. Copies of release forms may be requested prior to publishing images and footage of identifiable persons. 

  4. Blogs are thought pieces on a current topic that are not more than 500 words. These undergo review by the editors but not peer review. 

  5. Supplement submissions are pieces associated with a specific supplement.

2. Prepare Submissions According to BCPHR's Guidelines

Prepare your submission according to the appropriate submission guidelines, available here.

3. Upload Your Submission to BCPHR's Editorial Platform, Scholastica

BCPHR manages articles through the platform, Scholastica. Click here for step-by-step instructions on how to submit to BCPHR’s editorial platform.  

Citations/Acknowledgement of Sources

Authors should ensure that they have properly acknowledged the work of others, and should also cite publications that have been influential in determining the nature of the reported work. Information obtained privately (from conversation, correspondence or discussion with third parties) must not be used or reported without explicit, written permission from the source. Authors should not use information obtained in the course of providing confidential services, such as refereeing manuscripts or grant applications, unless they have obtained the explicit written permission of the author(s) of the work involved in these services.

Originality and Plagarism

Authors should ensure that they have written and submit only entirely original works, and if they have used the work and/or words of others, that this has been appropriately cited. Publications that have been influential in determining the nature of the work reported in the manuscript should also be cited. Plagiarism takes many forms, from “passing off” another’s paper as the author’s own, to copying or paraphrasing substantial parts of another’s paper (without attribution), to claiming results from research conducted by others. Plagiarism in all its forms constitutes unethical publishing behavior and is unacceptable.

Multiple, Duplicate, Redundant or Concurrent Submission/Publication

Papers describing essentially the same research should not be published in more than one journal or primary publication. Hence, authors should not submit for consideration a manuscript that has already been published in another journal. Submission of a manuscript concurrently to more than one journal is unethical publishing behavior and unacceptable. The publication of some kinds of articles (such as clinical guidelines, translations) in more than one journal is sometimes justifiable, provided that certain conditions are met. The authors and editors of the journals concerned must agree to the secondary publication, which must reflect the same data and interpretation of the primary document. The primary reference must be cited in the secondary publication.

BCPHR Timeline

Expedite periods fast track pieces from submission to peer review to potential publication in 2 weeks. Otherwise, submission to publication can take 6-12 weeks.  

Intellectual Property

Authors will retain the copyright to their publications and will receive credit for their published pieces. Authors are required to secure the rights necessary to reproduce previously published images, tables, charts, and figures. They must also ensure that the aforementioned are appropriately credited. If authors wish to include photographs of individuals within their submission, BCPHR will require copies of all consent paperwork. 

Post-Publication Discussions and Updates

BCPHR is committed to academic accuracy of all pieces published in its journal. 

: BCPHR is dedicated to identifying and correctly any and all errors in published pieces as soon as possible. In the event this happens, the original URL and DOI are retained. However, we make note of what was corrected, and the date the update was made, on the page.

BCPHR retracts articles due to major scientific errors or fraud. Retracted articles are deactivated from public viewing on the website, but retained for our records. BCPHR follows the National Library of Medicine’s guidelines for retractions, available here. We additionally alert readers of retractions on our website and through the e-newsletter of our publisher, BCPH.org

In an effort to promote clarity and discourse, BCPHR allows for post-publication discussions to be submitted in the form of a letter to the editor or commentaries. If you are interested in beginning a post-publication discussion, please contact: [email protected]. In accordance with COPE guidelines, critiques will only be considered for publication if claims are supported by evidence, they solely address the content of published manuscripts and do not contain defamatory or libelous content. Manuscript authors will be afforded the option to respond to critiques. 

Joining the Editorial Board

Peer reviewers who submit at least 4 exemplary reviews may be invited and/or make an inquiry to join the editorial board of the BCPHR. Editors generally begin as associate editors, shepherding manuscripts through the editorial process. They then can be promoted to the senior ranks of deputy editors and managing editors. Extensive details about becoming an editor and reviewer are available here.

Conflicts of Interest

Authors must disclose any existing conflict of interest or relevant partnerships related to their submission. By submitting to BCPHR, authors declare they do not have personal, commercial, academic, or financial interests that influence the research and opinions represented in the work submitted. Please note: submissions to the Journal must not have been previously published or be under consideration for publication elsewhere.

Allegations of Misconduct

Allegations and suspicion of research misconduct will be reviewed and investigated by the Journal as appropriate. Misconduct may include plagiarism, misrepresentation, manipulation of citations/inappropriately credited information, unethical research practices, falsification, or fabrication of data. All investigations will be transparently conducted while respecting and maintaining confidentiality. Concerns regarding research misconduct may be addressed to [email protected].

BCPHR’s Research Misconduct Processes:

  • Three members of BCPHR’s advisory board will investigate the allegation and comprise the advisory board committee.
  • Further information may be requested of the complainant and if warranted, a notice of investigation regarding the allegations will be sent to both parties.
  • At this stage, authors will be afforded the chance to respond to allegations and an objective investigation will ensue.
  • The advisory board committee will also set a deadline by which all evidence or information must be submitted by both parties. A decision will be made thereafter by the advisory board committee.

Feedback and Complaints

Feedback or complaints regarding content or procedure may be sent to [email protected] and will be addressed by an appropriate member of our staff. We aim for complaints to be acknowledged and responded to within two weeks of receipt. All appeals will be processed by BCPHR’s editorial board and will only be considered if three criteria are met: i) the appeal must be received within 30 days of an official decision; ii) the author addresses all reviewer comments; iii) the author provides a rationale indicating why they think the decision is erroneous. Appeals will then be reviewed by at least two editors that were not involved in the original review process of the manuscript and a final decision will be made.

Ethnical Requirements

Before a manuscript is accepted for publication, if applicable, authors must confirm that ethical requirements and standards have been met. As such, authors must provide proof of ethical approval to the Journal.

Data Statement

BCPHR asks that a data availability statement be provided for all applicable publications to promote research transparency and replicability. This statement should include the conditions under which data reuse is permitted, the name and contact details of applicable data repositories, and any other pertinent information.

Please include the following information in regards to:

– Open Access Data Repositories: Type of data used, repository name, contact details/URL, conditions of reuse.

– Data Available By Request: Type of data used, type of data available, public contact details, conditions of reuse, process to obtain a data licence (if necessary).


Questions may be submitted to [email protected].


Unless requested, please DO NOT email submissions or pitches/abstracts for potential articles. They will not be reviewed.