NIH: Statement on Article Publication Resulting from NIH Funded Research

Nov 07 2017 Published by under Uncategorized

Notice Number: NOT-OD-18-011

Release Date:  November 3, 2017


Purpose: To protect the credibility of published research, authors are encouraged to publish papers arising from NIH-funded research in reputable journals.


Effective communication of scientific results is an essential part of the scientific process. In support of public access to National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded research, authors are encouraged to publish their results in reputable journals. The NIH has noted an increase in the numbers of papers reported as products of NIH funding which are published in journals or by publishers that do not follow best practices promoted by professional scholarly publishing organizations. These journals and publishers typically can be identified by several attributes, including:

  • misleading pricing (e.g., lack of transparency about article processing charges);
  • failure to disclose information to authors;
  • aggressive tactics to solicit article submissions;
  • inaccurate statements about editorial board membership; and
  • misleading or suspicious peer-review processes.

Publications using such practices may call into question the credibility of the research they report.

Recommendations to identify credible journals

To help protect the credibility of papers arising from its research investment, NIH encourages its stakeholders, including grantees, contractors, intramural researchers, and librarians, to help authors:

  • Adhere to the principles of research integrity and publication ethics;
  • Identify journals that follow best practices promoted by professional scholarly publishing organizations; and
  • Avoid publishing in journals that do not have a clearly stated and rigorous peer review process.

Existing resources can assist in this process.  Guidance for researchers include:
Think Check Submit, a publishing industry resource; and
Academics and scientists: Beware of predatory journal publishers,” information from the Federal Trade Commission.

The National Library of Medicine, the NIH entity that maintains PubMed and PubMed Central, encourages publishers to follow established industry best practices including:


Please direct all inquiries to:

Office of Extramural Research

2 responses so far

  • Microscientist says:

    The recommendations are not user friendly. So how long until an "NIH approved" list of journals is put out there? Because that would be much easier to navigate.

  • Ola says:

    Been thinking this should happen for ages. The only way people will stop publishing crap (including stuff that they know is not good enough for a "real" peer reviewed journal so they go the cop-out route and pay-to-play), is if it hits them in the pocket book. NIH absolutely has some responsibility here, to ensure their R&R game is being followed through into the publicaton phase. What's not to like about this?

    As Microsci above says, this would be a whole lot easier if they'd just publish a list of crap journals (Hmmm.... if only there was someone out there who'd already done this, at least until he was lawyered into submission by publishers....) I wonder how the same publishers who silenced Beall would react to being blacklisted by NIH? Probably not so willing to sue.

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