About the Journal
St. Mary’s University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Sources of Support
St. Mary’s University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
1. Guidelines in peer review process
a) Draft articles shall be given numerical code (without author’s name) and shall be sent to members of the Editorial Team for anonymous internal review.
b) Based on internal review, draft Articles shall be classified into four categories: (i) drafts that can be sent to two external reviewers for blind review; (ii) drafts that can be concurrently sent to authors –for improvement– and to external reviewers; (iii) drafts that should be sent back to authors for substantial improvement and reworking; and (iv) drafts that do not fit to the scope and/or the standards of the journal.
c) Suggestions may be given to authors of draft articles if they would accept publication in the notes or comments columns.
d) The draft articles that are positively assessed based on the elements of internal review (stated under Section 3 below) shall be sent to two external assessors for double blind review.
e) External assessors are assigned based on subject-matter expertise, experience and scholarly contribution on the themes addressed in the draft article.
f) The External Review Form indicates the core dimensions of the review: (i) comments on content, i.e., originality, depth, coherence of arguments, use of relevant sources and data; (ii) comments on relevance and contribution to the field; (iii) comments on form and structure, i.e., technical quality and level of language proficiency, (iv) other comments, and (v) comments on publishability by indicating whether the draft article: “can be accepted for publication in its current form”, or “can be accepted if it is revised (minor revision)”, or “should be rejected with suggested revisions for resubmission”, or “should be rejected outright”.
g) In addition to the comments (filled in the Review Form, or submitted in a separate sheet), reviewers may provide detailed comments including in-text comments on the pdf file sent to them for review.
h) The indicative substantive and structural criteria stated under Sections 4 and 5 (below) shall be standards of evaluation in the double-blind external review of articles.
i) If an article is found to be publishable by two external assessors, the comments will be sent to the author without the name of the assessors.
j) Where there is variation between the two external reviewers regarding the publishability of a draft article, the comments of both reviewers shall be sent to the author so that the revised version that addresses both comments can be sent to a third external assessor whose review is final on the publishability of the draft article.
k) The Editorial Team shall ensure that the feedback from external review and internal review are addressed before the final revised version is accepted for publication.
2. Code of conduct in peer review process
a) An Editorial Team member who knows the identity of an author of a draft article shall not provide comments during the internal review process.
b) To avoid conflict of interest in internal review, an author who is in the Editorial Team shall not reveal her/his authorship to other Editorial Team members and shall not provide comments during the internal review process or nominate an external reviewer.
3. Elements of internal review
The elements of evaluation during internal review shall be the following:
a) conformity of the draft article with the aim, focus and scope of the journal;
b) originality, substantive relevance, completeness, and quality of scholarship; and
c) structure of the draft article.
4. Substantive criteria for double-blind external review
The following shall be used as indicative substantive criteria in the evaluation of publishable articles:
a) novel research, scholarship, or fresh perspective on an issue;
b) the validity of the research methodology depending on the doctrinal and socio-legal features of the research;
c) thorough research on the various issues and concepts contained in the article including primary sources (i.e. laws) and secondary sources for doctrinal research; which should further include primary and/or secondary empirical data for socio-legal research;
d) demonstration of comprehensive knowledge on the subject matter and the level of review, analysis, interpretation, integration and synthesis in the course of addressing the research problems/legal issues; and
e) adequacy of support to the arguments so that they shall not be purely speculative.
5. Structural criteria for double-blind external review
The following shall be used as indicative criteria in evaluating the structure of publishable articles:
a) clarity of the title in reflecting the subject matter of the article;
b) clarity of the text, level of language proficiency, coherence, sequence and logical organization;
c) consistency of evidence and sources to support the arguments, discussion, analysis and findings;
d) coherence in conveying the context, laws, or issue/s that are discussed;
e) harmony and proportion between core arguments and background information to illustrate arguments;
f) appropriate length which is neither too condensed nor too detailed for the themes addressed;
g) brevity in ancillary information in footnotes; and academic and objective tone.
Open Access Policy
This journal provides immediate open access to its content on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports a greater global exchange of knowledge.
Mizan Law Review is published twice a year in September and December.
Wondwosen Tamrat (PhD, Associate Professor): President, St. Mary’s University
Kirsti Aarnio: Former Ambassador of Finland to Ethiopia
Quality Control Process
Mizan Law Review welcomes contributions from academics, researchers, judges, attorneys, legal advisors, public prosecutors, and members of the legal profession (in Ethiopia and abroad). The quality control process of the journal shall, inter alia, ensure the effective and efficient management and processing of submissions from authors.
The quality control process gives due attention to the journal’s target audience which includes law schools, courts, lawmakers, various institutions, the legal profession, international organizations, and non-lawyers (interested in interdisciplinary reading on particular themes).
Feedback from the target audience shall be used as input toward sustaining and enhancing the quality and standards of the journal.
Every upcoming issue shall make use of feedback from readers and article contributors based on the motto published at the back cover of the journal which reads “We plan each issue as if it were a new book”.
Follow-up files shall indicate the status of submissions that are:
(i) carried forward among submissions for a previous issue, and
(ii) received for the upcoming issue.
Submissions in the pipeline shall not be carried forward beyond twelve months from the date of submission unless they are resubmitted with substantial revision and upgrading, even if they are positively assessed by one of the external reviewers.
The names of external assessors shall be published in alphabetical order on the second front-matter page of the issue in which the article is published –without indicating the particular article that each reviewer has assessed.
Subject-index of all articles published in Mizan Law Review <http://dx.doi.org/10.4314/mlr.v12i2.7> shall be updated every two years to facilitate easier access to the list of articles that are published on related subjects and issues.
Code of publishing conduct
The use of another person’s intellectual contribution without acknowledgement by:
a) paraphrasing text without indication of source/s; or
b) using four or more words in the same form and sequence without quotation marks or indentation, even if the source is acknowledged
Acknowledgement in paraphrased text should be clearly indicated in each sentence obtained from another source; and mere indication of a source at the end of a paragraph through footnote or in-text reference shall not be considered as acknowledgment to the sentences –in a paragraph– that precede the sentence which is acknowledged.
Any submission that violates the duty of acknowledgement stated in Section 5(a) of Author Guidelines of Mizan Law Review shall not be processed. The review process shall be discontinued and notification shall be given to the author.
In the case of legitimate and valid complaint from a reader regarding plagiarism, the Editorial Team shall deliberate upon the issue and may retract the online version of the article.
Articles or other works that are uploaded online shall not be retracted –for replacement- unless it is done upon the approval of AJOL for just cause (such as error in version) within eight hours from the time of uploading.
Typographical or arithmetical corrections (where appropriate) may only be made through Errata at the last page of a subsequent issue.
Authors shall use academic and objective tone in all sections, and shall not speculate or generalize without fair balance to the other side of the argument.
Submissions shall not expressly or impliedly use hate scripts and stereotypes relating to gender, race, religion, ethnic identities or language groups.