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I submitted a paper and unfortunately, about a week later, found a glaring error in reasoning in one of the proofs. Since the paper had been submitted only 1 week, the journal website said it hadnt been sent out for review yet. So, I emailed the journal office IMMEDIATELY with a request to withdraw my paper. No response.

I sent another email to the journal office. No response.

Finally I emailed the chief editor with my request. No response :(

Its been a month. With some additional steps, I have been able to repair my proof and now I want to submit my paper to another journal. But I dont know if my paper has been successfully withdrawn or not. The journal website still says no referee has been picked.

What do I do? The journal in question is quite well known and the editors are powerful people. I am a junior mathematician; I dont want to piss anyone off. At the same time, I think I can have my paper accepted to another good journal by application season if I submit now. how much more should I wait?

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closed as off topic by quid, Dima Pasechnik, Todd Trimble, Felipe Voloch, Benjamin Steinberg Mar 11 '13 at 15:49

Questions on MathOverflow are expected to relate to research level mathematics within the scope defined by the community. Consider editing the question or leaving comments for improvement if you believe the question can be reworded to fit within the scope. Read more about reopening questions here.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

I think this question is better asked at academia.stackexchange.com –  Joel Reyes Noche Mar 11 '13 at 14:49
This seems quite unspecific to mathematics and thus off-topic for this site. The site Joel Reyes Noche mentioned seems like a good fit. Voted to close. –  quid Mar 11 '13 at 14:57

1 Answer 1

As an editor of 5 journals, I feel concerned by the case of this young person.

Multiple submission of the same paper is indeed misconduct - see e.g. the recent EMS code of practice:


However, in your case, it seems that you took all necessary steps. If I were you, I'd keep in my files a copy of all unanswered messages, about withdrawal I'd send a final reminder to the chief editor (asking for acknowledgement of receipt), and I'd go ahead with submission to the new journal.

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Don't forget to tick the "return receipt" box on your e-mail program when you send the reminder. It's always a good CYA practice. –  Federico Poloni Mar 11 '13 at 15:10
Thanks Prof. Valette. I received a confirmation of withdrawal from the journal office 2 minutes back :) Seems like the second email to the Chief Editor did the trick. :) –  juniormath Mar 11 '13 at 15:16
but why don't you send the correct version to the same journal, if I may ask? –  Delio Mugnolo Mar 11 '13 at 15:50
Just feels weird to send it to same journal. I just want to start over at a different journal with a clean slate... –  juniormath Mar 11 '13 at 16:08

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