I am about to submit a paper to Nature but I made public the technical report supporting an important share of the results via BioRXiv a few weeks ago.

In the Nature submission system, they asked if the results have been published elsewhere. Is the preprint of my technical report considered as such?



Nature encourages the use of preprints, as noted on their journal's policy page:

Nature Research journals encourage posting of preprints of primary research manuscripts on preprint servers, authors’ or institutional websites, and open communications between researchers whether on community preprint servers or preprint commenting platforms. Preprints are defined as an author’s version of a research manuscript prior to formal peer review at a journal, which is deposited on a public server (as described in Preprints for the life sciences. Science 352, 899–901; 2016); preprints may be posted at any time during the peer review process. Posting of preprints is not considered prior publication and will not jeopardize consideration at Nature Research journals. Manuscripts posted on preprint servers will not be taken into account when determining the advance provided by a study under consideration at a Nature Research journal.

The webpage then proceeds to provide the details for their policy.


Is a preprint considered as dual publication?

No, dual publication means that identical or significantly overlapping works are independently published by the same or distinct publishers. A preprint is not published by a publisher and is excluded. However, as noted in a comment, preprints may preclude publication by some journals.


In the case of Nature, the existence of the preprint should be indicated during the submission process, as pinpointed by @Richard Erickson. It is clearly stated: « Authors should disclose details of preprint posting, including DOI and licensing terms, upon submission of the manuscript or at any other point during consideration at a Nature Research journal. Once the preprint is published, it is the author’s responsibility to ensure that the preprint record is updated with a publication reference, including the DOI and a URL link to the published version of the article on the journal website. »

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