In general, we follow the Core Practices in publishing as developed by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE, 2017). Access, submission, and reviewer policies can be found elsewhere on the journal’s page, here we outline additional editorial policies.


Ownership Policy

The ownership of Southern African Field Archaeology is seated within the journal itself (represented by the Editorial Board) and the broader archaeology and heritage community of the sub-continent. It is a strictly non-profit journal revived to provide open-access publishing and share free information about the archaeological, palaeo-scientific and cultural heritage of southern and sub-Saharan Africa. No single person or entity benefits financially from its production and/or distribution.


Conflicts of Interest and Confidentiality Policy

We define conflicts of interest as factors that may influence the judgement of authors, reviewers and/or editors. Such conflicts can be personal, commercial, political, academic or financial, and must be declared by authors, reviewers and editors. In case of uncertainty, rather disclose.


Authors’ conflicts of interest: Authors are asked during the submission process to confirm that they have declared any potential conflicts of interest. Examples include employment, funding sources, owning of shares and payment for lectures or travel that may affect the publication or the affiliation under which it is published.


Reviewers’ conflicts of interest: Reviewers are asked to declare any potential conflicts of interest before accepting a manuscript for review. Examples include being too close to the submitting authors, being part of the project, having a direct competing interest that may affect judgement, or benefitting in any manner from the paper being either accepted or rejected.


Editors’ conflicts of interest: The same policy for authors’ conflicts of interest applies when editors are the authors of editorials, non-reviewed front section contributions and manuscripts submitted for peer review. With regard to assigning reviewers and making a decision on a manuscript, an editor may withdraw from a manuscript should they be unable to process it objectively for any reason.


Editorial and Advisory Board members: Members of the Editorial and Advisory Boards are permitted to publish in the journal. Their submissions are treated in the same manner as those of other authors with respect to reviewing and confidentiality.


Confidentiality: Manuscripts are confidential documents submitted in trust for the sole purpose of scholarly evaluation. Authors, reviewers, and editorial staff should therefore treat all submitted manuscripts and correspondence with the editorial office as confidential during and after the review process.


Corrections and Retraction Policy

A published article forms part of the published record and will not be altered or removed. A correction will be published if a published article contains a significant error that affects its accuracy. Minor errors, such as typographical errors, will generally not be corrected. Corrections are published as either Errata or Corrigenda at the discretion of the editorial team. An Erratum or Corrigendum will be linked to the original article online.

  • An erratum is the correction of an error introduced by the journal during editing or production. The Author will be given an opportunity to approve an erratum before publication.
  • A corrigendum is the correction of an error made by the author/s.


Retraction: Published contributions should remain extant and intact. Under exceptional circumstances such as involving plagiarism, redundant publication or data error, papers may need to be retracted, removed or replaced in order to protect the integrity of the literature. The need for a retraction will be determined by the editorial team, but may be initiated by the author/s, in cases of flawed data or conclusions. To retract an article, a notice of retraction will be published in the next issue, which will: include the title and authors of the article, the reason for the retraction and who is retracting the article and be linked to the article online.


Editorial Service Policy

All members of the Editorial Team (Editorial Board, Specialist Editors, Advisory Board) are appointed for a 5-year term, which is renewable under the following conditions:

  • Members perform their duties voluntary without expectation of an honorarium.
  • Members maintain an active role when required to do so within the context of their respective appointments.
  • Members inform the Editorial Board without delay whenever they become unable to execute their functions in a timely manner, so that a contingency plan may be put in place without disadvantaging the authors we serve and/or the operations of the journal.
  • Inactive members may be asked to step down before the end of their term so that their positions may be replaced without interrupting the functioning of the journal.