The deadlines for proposals for Special Issues are annually 31 May and 30 November.
JEPP receives a large number of Special Issue proposals and experience suggests that a good special issue can take up to eighteen months from acceptance of the initial proposal to submission of the final manuscript to the copy editor. Whilst some proposals are submitted in embryonic form, others are more fully developed and sometimes accompanied by draft papers. These differences give rise to problems of fairness in judging proposals.
In the interests of fairness, the Editors assess formal proposals within a ‘gathered field’ for each available special issue ‘slot’, some 12-18 months ahead of the planned publication date for a given special issue volume. For each vacant slot there is a date by which a formal proposal must reach the Editors. However, the Editors are happy to give informal advice in advance of a formal submission. If a proposal is deemed by the Editors to stand little chance of acceptance, the proposers will be advised of this immediately, in order to enable them to approach other journals (or book publishers) without undue delay. Once all proposals have been received by the due date, the Editors will normally reach a decision within two weeks. At the Editors’ discretion some proposals, which are not selected at that time, may be considered along with other proposals for the next vacant slot.
A formal proposal should contain the following information:
• The title of the proposed special issue.
• The names, addresses, and positions of the proposed Guest Editor(s) together with brief biographical details.
• A brief description of the rationale behind the proposal, its innovative nature in relation to existing published work in the particular field, and an indication of its likely appeal to readers not specializing in the particular field (for example the broader theoretical or methodological focus of the proposed special issue). The description shall not exceed 1200 words.
• Names and position of each proposed paper contributor and an approx. 150-word abstract of each of the planned papers, together with an indication of their commitment to contribute to the special issue. (It is appreciated that the draft abstracts are indicative, but it is important that contributors are ‘signed up’ and not just on your wish list!). Since all of the papers for the Special Issue will be subject to standard peer review, you may want to factor in that not necessarily all papers will make it through that process. Hence, submitting a proposal with merely eight proposed papers (8000 words being the standard article length), you will stand the risk of losing several papers as a result of peer review. We thus encourage submissions containing more than eight paper proposals.
• Details of the project management ‘milestones’ such as any workshops that are planned, date by which first and subsequent drafts are to be submitted, the time allowed for the refereeing process etc. (the Editors are happy to advise on these matters, but it is best to assume that some authors and referees will not adhere to your timetable!).
• The planned word count of each paper and confirmation that the total word count will not exceed 64,000 words including refs, notes, diagrams and tables.
• Proposals are to be sent directly to the Editors (Berthold Rittberger: email@example.com; Jeremy Richardson: firstname.lastname@example.org).
Guest Editor(s) will be required to sign a (standard) formal publishing agreement with the publishers once a proposal has been accepted by the Editors.
Special issues are managed, on a day to day basis, by the Guest Editor(s), via the Scholar One online submission and review system used by JEPP, subject to the general guidance (and no doubt help!) of the Editors of JEPP.
Normal JEPP refereeing procedures (at least two referees per paper) apply. All special issues are eligible for consideration for publication in book form, in the JEPP series published by Routledge.