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Retractions policy


As members of COPE, SAGE follows the COPE Retraction Guidelines. An article may be retracted under the following circumstances:

  • There is clear evidence that the findings are unreliable, due to misconduct (e.g. fabrication of the data) or an honest error on the part of the author.
  • The findings have previously been published elsewhere (i.e. cases of redundant publication).
  • The findings or reporting of the findings have been plagiarized.
  • The research has not been conducted in accordance with the relevant ethical procedures.
  • SAGE will work with the editor and author on drafting the retraction notice, which will clearly set out the reasons as to why the article is being retracted.

Expressions of Concern

An Expression of Concern (EoC) may be issued if we are made aware of concerns with a published article, either due to potentially incorrect findings or publication misconduct. We will only issue an EoC if the concerns are well-founded but investigations have proven inconclusive. We will sometimes issue an EoC if investigations are ongoing and likely to take some time to resolve.


SAGE upholds the International Association of Scientific, Technical and Medical Publishers (STM) guidelines on the Preservation of the Objective Record of Science and we will not withdraw the article unless legally required to do so, i.e.:

  • The privacy of a research subject has been inappropriately violated.
  • The article contains errors that would result in a risk to the general public if followed.
  • The article makes defamatory comments about others or their work.