CSS Ethics in Publishing Committee

The scope of the IEEE-CSS Standing Committee on Ethics in Publishing (EiP) is to investigate allegations of possible misconduct by Authors of papers submitted to or published in a CSS journal or conference.

The EiP Committee consists of

  • a Chair: the CSS Vice President Publication Activities (VPPA), who serves as the official spokesperson of the EiP Committee;
  • an Executive Chair who coordinates the EiP Committee activity;
  • 3-4 members, selected among the community scientists, based on their extensive experience, broad scientific interests, and past editorial activities.

The Executive Chair and the EiP Committee Members are anonymous and their names cannot be disclosed.

Requests to investigate potentially unethical cases should be forwarded to the Chair of the EiP Committee

Depending on whether the case investigated pertains to a CSS journal or a CSS conference, the relevant Editor-in-Chief or Program Committee Chair are kept in the loop and informed of EiP Committee decisions. However, in general, he/she is not involved in the discussions. To this purpose, the Chair usually acts as intermediate between them and the EiP Committee.

The EiP Committee evaluates each case individually, possibly inviting additional individuals as required by the specificity of the topic, and come up with a recommendation/decision. Also in this case, it will be the Chair to get in touch with the individual, explain him/her the opinion he/she is required to provide, and forward his/her report and recommendation to the EiP Committee.

The main unethical violations that the EiP Committee is tasked to evaluate is the inappropriate use of material previously published or submitted for publication (either by the Authors of the manuscript under consideration or by other Authors). The inappropriate use may vary in forms and degrees: from a small overlap not properly acknowledged, to double submissions or verbatim copy of contents of someone else's paper. Full details on IEEE publication policies are provided in Section 8 of the IEEE Publication Services and Products Board Operations Manual. See also the CSS Policy on overlapping submissions.

Depending on the level of violation, the EiP Committee can decide:

  • that there is no significant violation and hence no further action is needed,
  • that the level of violation is minor but not negligible, and hence the Chair sends a letter to the "offending" Authors, clarifying that their behavior is violating the ethics of scientific publishing. In this case, there may be possible corrective actions, as deemed appropriate, as for instance the paper rejection;
  • that the violation is significant, and hence deserves to be reported to the IEEE PSPB Chair for possible corrective actions; these actions include request for formal letters of apologies; possible withdrawal of the paper from IEEE Xplore, in case it has already been published; ban from IEEE publications for a number of years: 1-5 for each violation; or other actions as deemed appropriate.


EIP Committee Chair


Andrea Serrani

Ohio State University
United States