The Associate Editor is responsible for the initial assessment of a manuscript before sending them out for review. At this stage, the Associate Editor can also recommend rejection to the Specialty Chief Editor for the following reasons:
Objective errors in the methods, applications, or interpretations were identified in the manuscript that prevent further consideration.
Ethical issues were identified in the manuscript that prevent further review or publication.
The content of this manuscript does not meet the standards of rigor required by the journal to be considered for publication (which includes serious language issues).
The Associate Editor determines the level of revisions necessary, based on the reviewer reports and generally acts as a mediator during the review process, as well as ensures a timely review. When at least two (for full length article types) reviewers have endorsed the manuscript for publication , the Associate Editor assesses and decides whether to accept the submission for publication.
During the interactive review process, if serious flaws are discovered in the manuscript, the Associate Editor can recommend manuscript rejection to the Specialty Chief Editor.