The Britain-based publisher Taylor & Francis reversed itself on a decision to decline to publish an article in a mathematics journal due to sanctions on Iran, where one of the article’s authors is based.
Todd Young, co-editor in chief of the journal Dynamical Systems and a professor of mathematics at Ohio University, said the production manager of the journal wrote a letter to the authors of the article stating that "Taylor & Francis could not publish the paper due to sanctions on the affiliation of one of the authors." Young said the decision was made without consultation of the editors in chief or members of the journal’s editorial board.
"We were quite surprised and dismayed," Young said Monday. "We have asked the publisher for clarification and reversal of this action and are awaiting their response."
On Tuesday, Taylor & Francis confirmed it would reverse the decision and allow the paper to proceed to publication. “In this instance, our company policy on international trade sanctions was applied. This policy is in place to ensure compliance with laws and regulations in the U.K., U.S., European Union, and United Nations jurisdictions,” the publisher said in a statement.
“However, we have also been actively reviewing how this policy should apply to research publishing. This is in order to ensure its application does not contravene academic freedom or editorial independence, whilst still ensuring we comply with all relevant international laws. Because this policy has been under review, we believe it is only fair to reverse this decision and reinstate the paper in question, so it can proceed to publication. We apologize for any upset this has caused and are in touch with the authors of this paper and the journal editor.”