Prepare a proposal
Generally, we welcome editorial board members, well-qualified authors, reviewers, or external experts in the relevant fields to edit a special issue for the journal. For the special issue topic, the Editors (Editor-in-Chief and Board Members) usually suggest a topic for a certain Guest Editor according to their research background. In addition, the Guest Editor may also propose any theme for a special issue that fits within the scope of the journal. The theme of the special issue should be of high current interest and broad enough to attract readers, but narrow enough to keep a strong focus for the special issue.
Those wishing to guest edit a special issue should submit a proposal to the Editorial Office at: firstname.lastname@example.org. The proposal for special issues will be evaluated by Editor-in-Chief in consultation with the Board Members within two weeks upon receipt.
The proposal should include:
★ current CV and brief bibliography (including visibility on the topic in question, and editorial experience) of Guest Editor;
★ names and contact information for up to two co-Guest Editors, if any;
★ the proposed topic and expected number of articles to be solicited for the special issue;
★ background and significance of the theme for the special issue;
★ scope of the special issue and six succinct keywords that reflect the key themes of the issue;
★ a list of potential contributors (if any);
★ tentative timetable for soliciting manuscripts and completing peer-review of contributed papers
Promote the special issue and invite high quality papers
After the proposal is approved, the Guest Editor needs to draft a call for papers, circulate the call for papers within their own personal networks, social media groups, or at any relevant conferences/workshops they may attend, and invite high quality papers for the special issue.
Meanwhile, the Editorial Office also circulates the call for papers among journal audiences, such as social media groups and Board Members to encourage submissions, and invite submissions from researchers in the special issue field.
Un-invited submissions are also welcomed to submit to a certain special issue.
Oversee the peer review process and ensure the quality of special issue papers
Special issue manuscripts are required to meet the same quality standards for publication as regular papers, and all special issue manuscripts (invited or un-invited) must undergone a rigorous and thorough review (except for some Editorials released by the Editors).
Special issue manuscripts will be initially checked by the Editor-in-Chief, and those merit for peer review will be assigned to the Guest Editor for further review process. Generally, the Guest Editor will act as the Academic Editor to handle their special issue manuscripts. Before that, the Guest Editor must declare any potential conflicts of interest based on the Checklist related to the contributing authors and/or the manuscript. If there is any conflicts of interest, the Editor-in-Chief will reassign another Academic Editor with the proper research background to handle the manuscripts.
Same as the regular review process, the Guest Editor who is in charge of the review process should pay attention to the validity and scientificity of the review report submitted by reviewers, potential conflicts of interest between reviewers and authors/submissions, report any potential misconducts regarding authors, reviewers, and manuscripts, as well as make recommendations (“Acceptance”, “Minor Revision”, “Major Revision” or “Rejection”) based on the review comments and own evaluation for the Editor-in-Chief’s final decision. The Editor-in-Chief decides whether to publish a certain special issue article or not. And such decision may oppose to the recommendation made by the Guest Editor. If the Editor-in-Chief has any reasonable concern or doubt at this stage, the manuscript may continue to be reviewed or revised to address any remaining issues at this stage, or even be rejected.
If the manuscript is submitted/invited/recommended by the Guest Editor, other editorial board members or external experts will be assigned as the Academic Editor to handle the review and to avoid conflicts of interests.
If the manuscript is considered outside of the scope of the special issue but within the scope of the journal, it may be recommended for a regular manuscript to the journal.
For detailed information, please refer to the Peer Review Policy and Editorial Process.