Q: Is it ethical to submit a paper to two or more journals simultaneously?
Can I submit the same paper to several journals? I want to publish in one journal only, but if I submit it to two or three simultaneously, then if I get a rejection from one, I won't waste time waiting for the decision before submitting to the second.
No, you cannot submit the same paper to more than one journal at the same time. This is known as simultaneous or concurrent submission and is considered as an unethical practice. This is because it leads to a waste of academic and scientific resources as two or more journals would spend time and money on carrying out the same tasks. You have to wait till the editorial decision making process is over at one journal. If your paper is rejected, you can submit it to another journal.
However, if you want to save time, you can send pre-submission inquiries to several journals at the same time. You can write to the editor of each journal giving a brief summary of your study, and ask them if they would be interested in it. You can then submit to any one journal depending on how positive the reply of the editor is.