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Information for ICRA Editors

The CEB Editor Timeline for ICRA 2015

5 September 2014 Provide keyword preferences
22 September 2014 Deadline to recruit AEs
1 October 2014 Submission deadline
7 October 2014 Deadline for Editors to report COI to Editor
13 October 2014 All papers assigned to AEs (load balanced)
26 October 2014 Deadline for AEs to assign papers to reviewers
26 October 2014 Deadline for AEs to summarily reject papers
18 November 2014 Deadline for reviewers to submit reviews
5 December 2014 Deadline for AE final reports
14 December 2014 Deadline for Editor endorsements
23-24 January 2015 Senior PC Meeting (Editor attendance is not needed)
30 January 2015 Paper acceptance notification
27 February 2015 Final paper deadline

 

Summary Rejection

The Editor assigned to the paper makes the final determination as to whether the paper should be rejected without further review, or should go through the formal review process.

A paper should be rejected without review in any of the following cases:

  • It clearly makes no novel contribution to the state of the art.
  • It contains significant technical errors.
  • The paper has been published previously (i.e., the paper is identical to, or nearly identical to previously published work by the same authors).
  • The paper plagiarizes previously published research by other authors.

A paper should not be rejected without review merely because it makes only an incremental contribution, because it fails to report real-world experiments or because of poor writing quality. Further, a paper should not be summarily rejected because the AE feels its subject lies outside the scope of ICRA (this judgment is left for the Program Committee). If there is any doubt as to the decision, the paper should be sent for review. No more that 10-15% of submitted papers will be rejected without review.

Editors are requested to inform their AEs of the criteria and deadlines for summary rejections. Editors should notify the EiC of their proposed summary rejections with the associated rationale by the deadline for summary rejections.

Plagiarism

IEEE defines plagiarism as the reuse of someone else's prior ideas, processes, results, or words without explicitly acknowledging the original author and source. It is important for all IEEE authors to recognize that plagiarism in any form, at any level, is unacceptable and is considered a serious breach of professional conduct, with potentially severe ethical and legal consequences (source: Section "8.2 Publication Guidelines" of the IEEE PSPB Operations Manual, "Guidelines for Adjudicating Different Levels of Plagiarism." )

Plagiarism cases involve serious accusations, which should be dealt with carefully. IEEE has clear policies to follow.

When a plagiarism case is detected by a CEB reviewer, he/she should inform the Associate Editor who assigned the review, the Editor, and the CEB Editor in Chief. While informing the editorial chain and ultimately the CEB Editor in Chief is mandatory, confidentiality in this process is strongly recommended by IEEE.

The iThenticate tool is used to detect overlaps between the submitted paper and other published documents. The outcome of this tool (available under "CrossCheck") should be used to evaluate whether possible plagiarism issues are present. One should ignore bibliographic overlaps, small matches, etc. If concerns are found, then the paper should be flagged as a possible case of plagiarism (following the link associated with the paper).

For submissions that have overlaps with previously published papers by the same authors (or with papers simultaneously submitted elsewhere), the IEEE rules are that the submission should cite the prior work, and clearly state how the submitted work is different from the previous publication or simultaneous submission. We don't have hard and fast rules for how much overlap with prior publications is too much. Somewhere in the neighborhood of 35% or more (of previously-published material) is a rough limit, although each submission has to be judged on its own merit. Note that overlaps with prior workshop papers (by the same authors) are usually not considered problematic, since IEEE supports the evolutionary publication paradigm of workshop papers being improved to conference papers, which are then improved to journal papers.

When a plagiarism case is detected, and the AE, Editor, and Editor-in-Chiefs concur on its relevance, the CEB stops the review process, and marks the paper for summary rejection. The Conference will send a summary rejection message with a stern comment, referring authors to IEEE policies, and warning of possibly impending further actions (in serious cases of plagiarism, IEEE Central will contact the authors directly). The EiC submits the case, with all evidence available, to an ad-hoc Committee for follow-up actions at IEEE level - as plagiarism cases usually involve more than one publication, and are of big concern to the Society.

Multiple submission (in which authors submit the same work to multiple venues, either simultaneously or serially) is related to, but not the same as, plagiarism. (Sometimes "multiple submission" is referred to as "self-plagiarism", but according to IEEE guidlines, this is a misnomer.) For submissions that have overlaps with previously published papers by the same authors (or with papers simultaneously submitted elsewhere), the IEEE rules are that the submission should cite the prior work, and clearly state how the submitted work is different from the previous publication or simultaneous submission. For serious multiple submission cases (where the AE, Editor, and Editor-in-chief agree the overlap is too much), the remedy is to reject their paper with a stern note in the Summary Report that the overlap of their paper with their own previously published papers is too much. Or, the authors might only be chastised for not citing their own work which the submission builds upon. These cases will not be forwarded to IEEE for followup.

Award candidates

Associate Editors are asked this year to identify which papers in their assignments they would consider as potential candidates for an award. To do so, they will use the "Confidential comments to the Program Committee" textbox in their AE Report form. It is not necessary to identify which award would a paper be a suitable candidate for.

Editors will consider the candidatures from the AEs, and will filter them in the light of their technical expertise, broader scope and editorial experience. Roughly speaking, ten candidates should be nominated in each profile.

Editors will communicate their candidates to the EiC, who will pass the info to the Senior Program Committee for the actual selection of finalists for each award.

Editor Endorsement of AE reports

The AE's recommendation and score, expressed in the Review Summary Report, will be overviewed by the supervising Editor, who will be responsible for checking that the quality standards of the review process (including number and depth of reviews, quality of AE's report, etc.) have been met. The Editor will update the score and report as needed, based on their calibration across multiple papers. Any confidential comments regarding the report/reviews should be noted in the confidential comments. The authors will see the finalized Review Summary Report prepared by the AE and Editor (but not the score); thus, the report should be carefully written to convey the main issues raised during the review process.

Conflicts of Interest

A CEB Editor is deemed to have a conflict of interest in a submitted paper if he or she is a (co-)author of the paper. Papers with Editor COIs will be reassigned to another Editor..