SAGE Publishing Policies  Journal Author Gateway


Contributor Agreement, Copyright and Permissions  Journal Author Gateway

Journal Contributor’s Publishing Agreement

SAGE requires the author as the rights holder to sign a Journal Contributor’s Publishing Agreement for all articles we publish. SAGE’s Journal Contributor’s Publishing Agreement is a licence agreement under which the author retains copyright in the work but grants SAGE the sole and exclusive right and licence to publish for the full legal term of copyright.  Exceptions may exist where assignment of copyright is required or preferred by a proprietor other than SAGE. In this case copyright in the work will be assigned from the author to the society.  

SAGE takes issues of copyright infringement, plagiarism or other breaches of best practice in publication very seriously. We seek to protect the rights of our authors and we always investigate claims of plagiarism or misuse of published articles. Equally, we seek to protect the reputation of the our journal against malpractice.  Submitted articles may be checked with duplication-checking software. Where an article is found to have plagiarised other work or included third-party copyright material without permission or with insufficient acknowledgement, or where the authorship of the article is contested, we reserve the right to take action including, but not limited to: publishing an erratum or corrigendum (correction); retracting the article (removing it from the journal); taking up the matter with the head of department or dean of the author's institution and/or relevant academic bodies or societies; banning the author from publication in the journal in question or all SAGE journals, or appropriate legal action.



Contributor Agreement


FAQs: Copyright

Q1 – What is an exclusive licence agreement?
A – With an exclusive licence you retain copyright. Your work is credited as © The Author(s) but you license the control of all rights exclusively to SAGE or, where relevant, a society or other proprietary publishing partner. This means that all licensing requests including permissions are managed by SAGE.
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Q 2 – Why do we require an exclusive licence agreement?
A – We seek to bring your article to the widest possible readership. An exclusive licence helps us ensure adequate protection against infringement of copyright protected material through breach of copyright or piracy anywhere in the world. It also ensures that requests by third parties to reprint or reproduce a contribution, or part of it in any format, are handled efficiently in accordance with general policy which encourages dissemination of knowledge inside the framework of copyright.
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Q 3 – Who owns the copyright in your article?
A – If you have written your article yourself, or with co–authors, and you have not been commissioned to write the article by someone else (either by a government agency, your employer or any other party) you (and any co–authors) will hold the copyright in your article. If you have written the article in the capacity of your role at work or your contract of employment you may not hold copyright in your article, and you will need to check the relevant box on your Contributor Agreement. Please see below for further information.
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Q 4 – What if I have co–authors contributing to this article?
A – You must ensure that you have their consent to submit the article for publication and that you have the right to sign the Contributor Agreement on their behalf. Or, if they prefer, you may all sign either one copy of the the form before returning it, or each author may sign and return their own copy.
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Q 5 – What if my employer holds the copyright in my work?
A –You need to check the relevant box on your Contributor Agreement and have your employer sign the Contributor Agreement too.
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Q 6 – What if I am a government employee?
A – a) If you are a UK , Canadian, Australian or British Commonwealth government employee, you just need to check the regular ‘work made for hire for employment box’ and have  your manager sign the Contributor Agreement too.
b) If you are a US federal employee, please check with your manager, but your work should be in the public domain, so not in copyright and therefore not assignable. Please check the relevant box on the form.
Q 7 – What are my rights as author?
A – It is important to check the policy for the journal to which you are submitting or publishing to establish your rights as Author. SAGE’s standard policies allow, without the need to request permission, the following rights:

  • You retain copyright in your work
  • You may do whatever you wish with the version of the article you submitted to the journal (version 1).
  • Once the article has been accepted for publication, you may post the accepted version (version 2) of the article on your own personal website, your department’s website or the repository of your institution without any restrictions.
  • You may not post the accepted version (version 2) of the article in any repository other than those listed above (i.e. you may not deposit in the repository of another institution or a subject repository) until 12 months after publication of the article in the journal.
  • You may use the published article (version 3) for your own teaching needs or to supply on an individual basis to research colleagues, provided that such supply is not for commercial purposes.
  • You may use the article (version 3) in a book you write or edit any time after publication in the journal.
  • You may not post the published article (version 3) on a website or in a repository without permission from SAGE.
  • When posting or re-using the article please provide a link to the appropriate DOI for the published version of the article on SAGE Journals (

More information about permissions.
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Q 8 – Can I publish my article open access in the SAGE Choice Scheme?
A – SAGE offers optional, funded open access in a number of journals. To view a current list, link to the further information below. For these journals, you will be invited to select this option on acceptance of your article. More information is available by linking to SAGE Choice FAQ. The SAGE Choice Access Publishing Agreement enables distribution of your article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non–Commercial License (–nc/2.0/uk/) which permits unrestricted non–commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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FAQs: Contributor Agreement

Q 9 – Can I fax my Contributor Agreement, send a scanned PDF of my signed Agreement or send an electronic signature?
A – You can do any of these. Your Contributor Agreement may be signed and executed in the following ways:

  • Traditional hard copy – please sign and return the Agreement to SAGE.
  • By fax – please sign and fax a copy of the Agreement to SAGE.
  • By e–mail – a scanned hard copy of the Agreement with your signature on it or a digital original copy with your electronic signature are equally acceptable.
  • Additionally some SAGE journals have instituted an online submission and review system known as SAGE Track. This system will allow you to agree to the terms and conditions of the Journal Publishing Contributor’s Agreement online and will automate the return of your contributor agreement.

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Q 10 – When do I need to submit my signed Contributor Agreement?
A – You will receive a Contributor Agreement upon acceptance of your article which should be signed and returned as soon as possible to prevent any delays in the production process for your article. Without the signed form we will be unable to publish the article.
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Q 11 – Why do I need to indemnify the Journal and SAGE?
A – It is standard for all SAGE contributors to make certain warranties to the Journal and SAGE Publications. This is simply because as the author of the article you are the only person who can assure us that the article we are publishing is your own work, and does not infringe the rights of anyone else.
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Q12 – What is the Declaration of Conflicting Interests?
A – A Declaration of Conflicting Interests policy refers to a formal policy a journal may have to require a conflict of interest statement or conflict of interest disclosure from a submitting or publishing author.
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Q13 – Does the Contributor Agreement enable me to comply with particular funder and institutional mandates including the NIH?
A – Yes, SAGE Contributor Agreements allow all authors to publish in full compliance with most currently known funding body and institutional open access archiving mandates. Exceptions are covered by the SAGE Choice scheme. Please also refer to your rights as author, above.
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Q14 – What if my employer or research funding body requires I submit an addendum to my Contributor Agreement?
A – If you are required to submit an addendum by your employer or research funding body, please make your request via email indicating the name of the journal, the title of your paper and the details of the request.
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Q15 – Do I need to sign a Contributor Agreement if I am publishing my article open access in the SAGE Choice Scheme?
A– If you are opting to make your contribution open access in a journal eligible for the SAGE Choice scheme you need to sign a SAGE Choice Publishing Agreement. See above for more information.
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FAQs: Permissions

Q 16 – What if I want to re–use material from another source in my article?
A – If your work does not qualify for a fair dealing exception (please see below) you will need to clear permission for all third party material you intend to include: direct text extracts, tables, or illustrations that have appeared in copyrighted material must be accompanied by written permission for their use from the copyright owner and original author along with complete information as to source. You may be able to benefit from free re-use of a limited amount of material from certain publishers under ‘STM Permissions Guidelines’ (see Q17).
Where possible, photographs of identifiable persons should be accompanied by signed releases from these people showing informed consent. This is particularly important for children and essential if photographs feature situations where privacy would be expected.
Articles appear in both the print and online versions of the journal, and wording of the permission licence must specify permission in all formats and media. Failure to get electronic permission rights will result in the images not being included at all in your article.
If you are unsure whether you need to clear permission, please contact SAGE’s Rights & Permissions Department (contact details below) for assistance.
There are some occasions where permission is not required for re–use of material from another source. The most important of these is ‘fair dealing’ (or ‘fair use’ in the USA.)
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Q 17 –What are ‘STM Permissions Guidelines’ and how can I use them?
A – SAGE is signed up to the STM permissions guidelines. Confusingly, STM does not only refer to scientific, technical and medical content only, but to all content of publishers that are members of an organization called STM.
These guidelines allow signatory publishers (and their authors) to use small amounts of other signatory publishers’ materials without payment of a fee. In some cases there is no need to request permission. In other cases, a publisher wishing to use content from another publisher simply cites the guidelines when requesting the material from the other publisher. Generally, the other publisher will then grant permission without charge.
View further information about STM Permissions Guidelines and the process for providing notification when required.
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Q 18 – What is ‘fair dealing’, and what does it cover?
A – UK law provides that copyright will not be infringed by ‘fair dealing’ but it does not define what ‘fair dealing’ itself means. It has come to be interpreted as referring to the way material is used, as well as the intention of the person using it.  However, use of third party material must qualify as fair dealing for a particular purpose.
There are a number of these purposes specified in UK law but the most relevant one for us is Fair Dealing for Criticism or Review
What constitutes ‘fair dealing for Criticism or Review’?
First of all use of third party material must be ‘Fair’. That means: not systematic and not conflicting with the rights of the copyright holder or affecting their ability to benefit from the work:

  • There is no set amount of material allowed or forbidden.  But the use cannot be systematic or excessive. Do not rely on wordcounts.
  • You must always make proper acknowledgment to the original copyright work. 

Criticism or review:

  • The third party material used must be discussed in the context of criticism or review. This is an essential component providing a justification for fair dealing.
  • There is no legal definition of criticism or review but it’s likely that there would be a fairly liberal interpretation by the Courts.
  • Mere illustration or ‘window dressing’ is ruled out. A good question to ask is whether your work would stand up if the material was deleted?  If so, it is unlikely to be for criticism and review. For example, use of material for an epigram would not be fair dealing.
  • This defence can only be used in United Kingdom law in conjunction with published works.
  • Permission is always required if you wish to modify or make changes to the third party material because all authors have moral rights under European law.

If you are in any doubt as to whether or not you can use the material as ‘fair dealing’ you should clear permission, or leave the material out.
Please note, this is SAGE’s working view of a relatively untested area of the law.
For more definitive guidelines please consult the British Academy/Publishers Association Joint Guidelines on Copyright and Academic Research:–guidelines/
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Q 19 – Is there any specific wording I should use in my letter requesting permission?
A – In order to be able to publish your work in the print and online versions of your article we require permission to be granted for worldwide rights to reproduce in all media in all formats. View a template letter requesting permission.
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Q 20 –Is there any article use or re–use that does not require permission from SAGE?
A – Yes, please click here to review your rights as author.
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Q 21 – How can I contact the Rights & Permissions department at SAGE?
by email:
by post:
Rights & Permissions Department
SAGE Publications
1 Oliver’s Yard
55 City Yard
by fax: +44 (0)20 7324 8600 marked for the attention of the Rights & Permissions Department
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Author e-prints  Journal Author Gateway

SAGE supports a range of author benefit policies with respect to providing authors with an e-print and the opportunity to purchase off-prints. E-prints are sent out automatically to the corresponding authors of articles published ahead of print and in print issues. A link is provided allowing the author to download the article directly from the SAGE website and forward the link onto her co-authors and colleagues. Please refer to the manuscript submission guidelines for the policy of the journal in which you are interested in submitting or publishing your article. A full list of SAGE journals is available here:

If an author would like to purchase a print copy of the issue in which their article appears, they will receive a 30% discount off the standard single issue price. Please contact Journals Subscriptions.

Version of Record and SAGE Corrections Policy  Journal Author Gateway

The Version of Record is the article as published in a volume and issue.  This is considered final and complete. Once published in an issue, we will not make alterations to an article except where legally required.

In the case of a major error being discovered, we will attach an electronic erratum or corrigendum notice detailing the correction to the online version of the article. This notice will also appear in the next available print issue. Where an author’s name has been misspelled, we will provide a duplicate bibliographic record on the online version of the journal, so that readers searching for the article will be able to find it using either spelling.

Corrections prior to the Version of Record

Many SAGE journals now offer OnlineFirst publication. Limited corrections may be made between OnlineFirst and issue publication. All versions of the article will remain available on the site numbered v1, v2... with the highest number representing the latest version.
For more details of our article versioning policy please go to:



Declaration of Conflicting Interests Policy  Journal Author Gateway

A Declaration of Conflicting Interests policy refers to a formal policy a journal may have to require a conflict of interest statement or conflict of interest disclosure from a submitting or publishing author.

The Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) states in its Guidelines on Good Publication Practice (2003) that:

‘Conflicts of interest arise when authors, reviewers, or editors have interests that are not fully apparent and that may influence their judgments on what is published. They have been described as those which, when revealed later, would make a reasonable reader feel misled or deceived.’

Many scholars, researchers and professionals may have potential conflicts of interest, that could have an effect on – or could be seen to – have an effect on their research.  As a result, some SAGE journals require a formal declaration of conflicting interests enabling a statement to be carried within the paginated published article.

A potential conflicting interest might arise from relationships, allegiances or hostilities to particular groups, organizations or interests, which may influence excessively one’s judgments or actions. The issue is particularly sensitive when such interests are private and/or may result in personal gain.

Articles will be evaluated fairly and will not necessarily be rejected when any competing interests are declared. 

Examples of conflicts of interest might include the following, although it is not an exhaustive list:

  • Having received fees for consulting.
  • Having received research funding.
  • Having been employed by a related company.
  • Holding stocks or shares in a company which might be affected by the publication of your paper.
  • Having received funds reimbursing you for attending a related symposia, or talk.

If there are other interests which the reasonable reader might feel has affected your research you may also wish to declare them.

*Please note that it is not expected that details of financial arrangements be disclosed when a competing interest is declared.

Author obligations regarding conflicting interests

In your Journal Publishing Contributor Agreement you will be asked to certify that:

  1. All forms of financial support, including pharmaceutical company support, are acknowledged in your Contribution.
  2. Any commercial or financial involvements that might present an appearance of a conflict of interest related to the Contribution are disclosed in a covering letter accompanying the Contribution and all such potential conflicts of interest will be discussed with the Editor as to whether disclosure of this information with the published Contribution is to be made in the journal.
  3. That you have not signed an agreement with any sponsor of the research reported in the Contribution that prevents you from publishing both positive and negative results or that forbids you from publishing this research without the prior approval of the sponsor.
  4. That you have checked the manuscript submission guidelines to see whether the journal requires a Declaration of Conflicting Interests and have complied with the requirements specified where such a policy exists.

How do I check the Manuscript Submission Guidelines to see if the journal to which I am submitting or publishing requires a declaration?

Please refer to the Manuscript Submission Guidelines to check the policy of the SAGE journal in which you are submitting or publishing to ensure you comply with any specific requirements needed.

Editor obligations regarding conflicting interests

The same obligations equally apply to editors or guest editors writing an editorial that will be published in the journal.

How do I make a declaration?
If you are submitting to or publishing your article in a journal which requires you to make a Declaration of Conflicting Interests, please include such a declaration at the end of your manuscript after any Acknowledgements and prior to the Funding Acknowledgement, Notes (if relevant) and References, under a heading ‘Conflict of Interest Statement’.

If no declaration is made the following will be printed under this heading in your article: ‘None Declared’. Alternatively, you may wish to state that ‘The Author(s) declare(s) that there is no conflict of interest’.

*Please note, a Conflict of Interest Statement will not appear in journals that do not require a declaration of conflicting interests.

Where a declaration is required the disclosure information must be specific and include any financial relationship that all authors of the article has with any sponsoring organization and the for–profit interests the organization represents, and with any for–profit product discussed or implied in the text of the article.

Additional Information

You may find the following useful resources to refer to for more information on Conflict of Interest policies, existing codes of practices and more general good practice in relation to journal publication ethics:

Guidelines published on good publication and the Code of Conduct by the Committee of Publication Ethics (COPE), see:

View the guidelines published by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE).

View a Common Standard for Conflict of Interest Disclosure published by Center for Science in the Public Interest.


Funding Acknowledgements  Journal Author Gateway

All research articles should have a funding acknowledgement statement included in the manuscript in the form of a sentence under a separate heading entitled ‘Funding’ directly after your Acknowledgements and Declaration of Conflicting Interests, if applicable, and prior to any Notes and your References. The funding agency should be written out in full, followed by the grant number in square brackets, see following example:

This work was supported by the Medical Research Council [grant number xxx].

Multiple grant numbers should be separated by comma and space. Where the research was supported by more than one agency, the different agencies should be separated by semi-colon, with “and” before the final funder. Thus:

This work was supported by the Trust [grant numbers xxxx, yyyy]; the Natural Environment Research Council [grant number zzzz]; and the Economic and Social Research Council [grant number aaaa].

In some cases, research is not funded by a specific project grant, but rather from the block grant and other resources available to a university, college or other research institution. Where no specific funding has been provided for the research we ask that corresponding authors use the following sentence:

This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

Please include this information under a separate heading entitled ‘Funding’ directly after any Acknowledgements and Declaration of Conflicting Interests (if applicable), and prior to any Notes and your References.

Important note: If you have any concerns that the provision of this information may compromise your anonymity dependent on the peer review policy of this journal outlined above, you can withhold this information until you submit your final accepted manuscript.