Q: Do we need to disclose to a new journal that we previously submitted the manuscript to another journal?

Detailed Question -

The journal we submitted our manuscript to redirected our manuscript to another journal, but there were no suggested changes. The manuscript just wasn't in their scope. But the recommended journal has not yet been launched and established. So, we opted to decline the transfer and find an established journal. Do we need to disclose this to the new journal?

1 Answer to this question

To start with the first action in your query, when there is a redirection, there is typically no request for changes, as changes, if any, need to come from the other journal. The redirect is a simple, straightforward redirect.

Next, you all seem to have done the right thing by not proceeding with the as-yet unlaunched journal. Its launch may get delayed, plus it will take a while to establish its credentials and at least two years to get an impact factor (IF).

Now, coming to your query, while it’s not necessary to disclose the matter of the redirection and your declining to the new journal you are targeting, it’s the nice thing to do. In your cover letter, you may make a short mention of this. In case the journal is interested in knowing more, you may provide additional details. We think this could also communicate how astutely you are thinking about your manuscript and publication goals, but that could be just our opinion. :-)

For help with selecting the next journal, you may find this resource helpful: [Journal selection guide] Questions you should ask to make the right choice

And for communicating with the journal, you may find the below resources handy:

Hope that helps. All the best for the next journal!