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Editorial Policies

Peer Review Process

All submissions are anonymised by the Editors-in-Chief and then assessed based on our mission statement and institutional objectives by the entire editorial board.

We commit to make this first evaluation within two working weeks. If the initial submissions are under the form of extended abstracts, authors are to submit their full articles to the journal within one month from the date on which the board made the first decision about abstracts’ suitability to be peer reviewed.

Once full articles are submitted, each paper deemed suitable is assigned on a voluntary basis to an editor who is responsible to oversee the full review process.

At this point, submissions are also assigned to two subject experts, who review and assess the article for clarity, validity, and sound methodology. If there is a discrepancy between the two reviews, a third review is required.

The editorial board will make a first selection and will identify and contact possible peer-reviewers. Members of the Editorial Board may be asked to complete a review task if they have some level of experience in the topic(s) tackled in the paper.

We have a database of reviewers, and authors publishing in the journal commit to peer review one article in the future.

Authors may be invited to recommend or ask for the exclusion of specific individuals from the peer review process. The journal does not guarantee to use these suggestions. All reviewers must be independent from the submission and will be asked to declare all competing interests.

The journal operates a double-blind peer review process, meaning that authors and reviewers remain anonymous for the review process. The review reports should be completed by peer-reviewers within 8 weeks, and then the editor(s) commit to return the first peer-review outcome to the author(s) within three more weeks. Reviewers are asked to provide formative feedback, even if an article is not deemed suitable for publication in the journal.

Based on the reviewer reports, the editor(s) will make a recommendation for rejection, minor or major revisions, acceptance or third round of review. This decision is also aided by an ethics review conducted by the editor, who verifies whether the author(s) followed LSE’s ethical code of conduct.

If the article requires amendments, then it returns to author(s) and after it has been resubmitted, the editor(s) overseeing the process will make a decision regarding acceptance, rejection, or a new round of review. Overall editorial responsibility rests with the journal’s Editor-in-Chiefs, who are supported by an academic advisor.

Members of the editorial team/board are permitted to submit their own papers to the journal. In cases where an author is associated with the journal, they will be removed from all editorial tasks for that paper and another member of the team will be assigned responsibility for overseeing peer review. A competing interest must also be declared within the submission and any resulting publication.

Reviewer Guidelines

Reviewers are asked to provide comment on the below topics and guidelines:

  • Content: Does the article fit within the scope of the journal? Is the submission original, relevant and rigorous? Is the author’s depth of understanding of the issues researched adequate? Are the sources and references adequate? Has the existing knowledge base been explored and built upon? Are the chosen methodologies appropriate and have they and the evidential base been appropriately used? Does the conclusion reflect the argument in the main body text and bring something new to the debate?
  • Structure and argument: Does the abstract summarise the arguments in a succinct and accurate way? Is the manuscript logically structured and do the arguments flow coherently? Is there enough reference to methodology in the introduction and are the arguments fully evidenced and substantiated? Does the introduction signpost the arguments in the logical way and does the conclusion adequately summarise them?
  • Figures/tables: Does the author’s use of tables, charts, figures or maps illustrate the arguments and support the evidential base? Is the quality of the formatting and presentation adequate?
  • Formatting: Does the submitted file adhere to the general author guidelines listed for the journal? Are the citations and references formatted to house-style?
  • Language: Is the text well written and jargon free? Please comment on the quality of English and need for grammatical improvement.

Prior Publication

The journal is happy to accept submissions of papers that have been loaded onto preprint servers or personal websites, have been presented at conferences, or other informal communication channels. These formats will not be deemed prior publication. The journal accepts papers that have been published within formal conference proceedings, provided that the paper provides substantially more data, analysis and/or discussion than the original conference paper. If the paper was presented but not formally published then more overlap is permitted. The accepted manuscript may also be uploaded to an open platform, under a CC BY licence. Authors must retain copyright to such postings.

Authors are encouraged to link any prior posting of their paper to the final published version within the journal if it is editorially accepted and published.

Authorship

All listed authors must qualify as such, as defined in our authorship guidelines, which have been developed from the ICMJE definitions. All authors must have given permission to be listed on the submitted paper.

Competing Interests, Funding and Ethics 

To ensure transparency, all authors, reviewers and editors are required to declare any interests that could compromise, conflict or influence the validity of the publication. Competing interests guidelines can be viewed here.

In addition, authors are required to specify funding sources and detail requirements for ethical research in the submitted manuscript, ensuring that ethical approval and consent statements are detailed within the manuscript (see Author Guidelines).

Corrections and Retractions

In accordance with guidelines from the Committee on Publication Ethics (where applicable), the Press handles different kinds of error. All articles have their proofs checked prior to publication by the author/editor, which should ensure that content errors are not present. Please contact your editorial manager if an article needs correcting.

Post-publication changes are not permitted to the publication, unless in exceptional circumstances. If an error is discovered in a published article then the publisher will assess whether a Correction paper or Retraction is required. Visit our Correction Policy page for more information.

Misconduct and Complaints

Allegations of misconduct will be taken with utmost seriousness, regardless of whether those involved are internal or external to the journal, or whether the submission in question is pre- or post-publication. If an allegation of misconduct is made to the journal, it must be immediately passed on to the publisher, who will follow guidelines from the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) on how to address the nature of the problem. Should the matter involve allegations against a member of the journal or publishing team, an independent and objective individual(s) may be sought to lead the investigation. Where misconduct is proven or strongly suspected, the journal has an obligation to report the issue to the author's institution, who may conduct their own investigation. This applies to both research misconduct (e.g. completing research without ethical approval and consent, fabricating or falsifying data etc) and publication misconduct (e.g. manipulating the peer review process, plagiarism etc). Should an investigation conclude that misconduct or misinformation has occurred then the author, along with their institution will be notified. Should the publication record need to be corrected, the journal's correction policy will be followed.

Should an author wish to lodge a complaint against an editorial decision or the editorial process in general they should first approach the Editor-in-Chief of the journal, explaining their complaint and ask for a reasoned response. Should this not be forthcoming or adequate, the author should raise the matter with the publisher, who will investigate the nature of the complaint and act as arbiter on whether the complaint should be upheld and investigated further. This will follow guidelines set out by COPE.

The journal does not tolerate abusive behaviour or correspondence towards its staff, academic editors, authors or reviewers. Any person engaged with the journal resorting to abusive behaviour or correspondence will have their contribution immediately withdrawn and future engagement with the journal will be at the discretion of the Editor and/or publisher.

Section Policies

Research

  • Open Submissions
  • Indexed
  • Peer Reviewed

Methods

  • Open Submissions
  • Indexed
  • Peer Reviewed

Commentaries

  • Open Submissions
  • Indexed
  • Peer Reviewed

Book Reviews

  • Open Submissions
  • Indexed
  • Peer Reviewed

Translations

  • Open Submissions
  • Indexed
  • Peer Reviewed

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