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Research articles must describe the outcomes of unpublished original research. These should make a substantial contribution to knowledge and understanding in the subject matter. If appropriate, it should be supported by relevant figures and tabulated data. Research articles should be of an appropriate length for the discipline. While we recommend 8,000 words, this is flexible. All word limits include referencing and citation.
The title page must include all of the below information, in the same order. No further information should be included:
Author names must include a forename and a surname. Forenames cannot include only initials.
The affiliation should ideally include Department, Institution, City, Country, however only the Institution and Country are mandatory.
Research articles must have the main text prefaced by an abstract of no more than 250 words summarising the main arguments and conclusions of the article. This must have the heading Abstract and be easily identified from the start of the main text.
A list of up to six key words may be placed below the abstract (optional).
The Abstract and Keywords should also be added to the metadata when making the initial online submission.
The body of the submission should be structured in a logical and easy to follow manner. A clear introduction section should be given.
Up to three level headings may be present and must be clearly identifiable using different font sizes, bold or italics. We suggest using Headings 1, 2 and 3 in MS-Words Style section.
Any acknowledgements must be headed and in a separate paragraph, placed after the main text but before the reference list.
Competing interests (optional)
If any of the authors have any competing interests then these must be declared. A short paragraph should be placed before the references. Please read our competing interest policy here.
Ethics and consent (if applicable)
Research involving human subjects, human material, or human data, must have been performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki. Where applicable, the studies must have been approved by an appropriate ethics committee and the authors should include a statement within the article text detailing this approval, including the name of the ethics committee and reference number of the approval. For most research involving human subjects, informed consent to participate in the study should be obtained from participants (or their parent or guardian in the case of children under 16).
All references cited within the submission must be listed at the end of the main text file.
For the submission title:
Capitalise all nouns, pronouns, adjectives, verbs, adverbs and subordinate conjunctions (i.e. as, because, although). Use lowercase for all articles, coordinate conjunctions and prepositions.
Headings within the main text:
First level headings in the text should follow the same rule as the main title.
For lower-level subheadings, only capitalise first letter and proper nouns.
Submissions may be made in any language. Although we are Anglophone based, we will attempt to find experts to handle submissions in any language. Non-English submissions may take us slightly longer to handle.
Authors submitting in English are welcome to use American or British spellings as long as they are used consistently throughout the whole of the submission.
When referring to proper nouns and normal institutional titles, the official, original spelling must be used.
If submitting in English, American or English grammar rules may be used as long as they are used consistently and match the spelling format (see above). For instance, you may use a serial comma or not.
The font used should be commonly available and in an easily readable size. This may be changed during the typesetting process and will not necessarily be the published font.
Underlined text should be avoided whenever possible.
Bold or italicised text to emphasise a point are permitted, although should be restricted to minimal occurrences to maximise their efficiency.
Use bullet points to denote a list without hierarchy or order of value. If the list indicates a specific sequence then a numbered list must be used.
Lists should be used sparingly to maximise their impact.
Use single quotation marks except for quotes within another speech, in which case double quotation marks are used.
Quotations that are longer than three lines in length must be in an indented paragraph separate from the main text.
The standard, non-italicised font must be used for all quotes.
It must be clear from the text and/or citation where the quote is sourced. If quoting from material that is under copyright then permission will need to be obtained from the copyright holder.
If some of the original quote is being omitted then an ellipsis with a space on either side must be used to break the text.
Words added to the original quote text, to enhance clarity, must be placed within square brackets
Acronyms & Abbreviations
With abbreviations, the crucial goal is to ensure that the reader particularly one who may not be fully familiar with the topic or context being addressed is able to follow along. Spell out almost all acronyms on first use, indicating the acronym in parentheses immediately thereafter. Use the acronym for all subsequent references.
A number of abbreviations are so common that they do not require the full text on the first instance. Examples of these can be found at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style/Abbreviations#Miscellanea
Abbreviations should usually be in capital letters without full stops.
Common examples from Latin origin do not follow this rule and should be lower case and can include full stops.
To ensure impartiality, trade names should be avoided in favour of generic names, unless absolutely necessary. If a trade name is mentioned then its inclusion must be put in context and explained/justified.
Use of footnotes/endnotes
Use endnotes rather than footnotes (we refer to these as Notes in the online publication). These appear at the end of the main text, before References.
All notes should be used only where crucial clarifying information needs to be conveyed.
Avoid using notes for purposes of referencing, with in-text citations used instead. If in-text citations cannot be used, a source can be cited as part of a note.
Please insert the endnote marker after the end punctuation.
Symbols are permitted within the main text and datasets as long as they are commonly in use or have explanatory definition on their first usage.
Hyphenation, em and en dashes
There is no set rule on the use of hyphenation between words, as long as they are consistently used.
Em dashes should be used sparingly. If they are present, they should denote emphasis, change of thought or interruption to the main sentence and can replace comas, parentheses, colons or semicolons.
En dashes can be used to replace to when indicating a range. No space should be around the dash.
For numbers zero to nine please spell the whole words. Please use figures for numbers 10 or higher.
We are happy for authors to use either words or figures to represent large whole figures (i.e. one million or 1,000,000) as long as the usage is consistent throughout the text.
If the sentence includes a series of numbers then figures must be used in each instance.
If the number appears as part of a dataset, in conjunction with a symbol or as part of a table then the figure must be used.
If a number is presented with a symbol then the figure must be not separated from the unit by a space.
If a sentence starts with a number it must be spelt, or the sentence should be re-written so that it no longer starts with the number.
When a number consists of more than four digits it must be split by a comma after every three digits to the left of the decimal place.
Do not use a comma for a decimal place.
Numbers that are less that zero must have 0 precede the decimal point.
Units of measurement
Symbols following a figure to denote a unit of measurement must be taken from the latest SI brochure. See http://www.bipm.org/utils/common/pdf/si_brochure_8_en.pdf for the full brochure.
Months and Years
When in the main text, months must be written in full. If displayed as part of a dataset then a shortened version is acceptable as long as the meaning is still clear. Months should always begin with a capital letter.
Use figures for years, decades and centuries. Do not include an apostrophe before the s.
Formulae must be proofed carefully by the author. Editors will not edit formulae. If special software has been used to create formulae, the way it is laid out is the way they will appear in the publication.
When presented in the main text, fractions must be written in non-hyphenated words, not figures.
If the currency is unclear from the symbol then it must be written in full for the first use and then abbreviated there after
There must be no space between the currency symbol and the number
Figures, including graphs and diagrams, must be professionally and clearly presented. If a figure is not easy to understand or does not appear to be of a suitable quality, the editor may ask to re-render or omit it.
All figures must be cited within the main text, in consecutive order using Arabic numerals (e.g. Figure 1, Figure 2, etc.).
Each figure must have an accompanying descriptive main title. This should clearly and concisely summarise the content and/or use of the figure image. A short additional figure legend is optional to offer a further description.
Figure titles and legends should be placed within the text document, either after the paragraph of their first citation, or as a list after the references.
The source of the image should be included, along with any relevant copyright information and a statement of authorisation (if needed). If using images from an archive then please provide the name of the archive, the collection and the acquisition number.
If your figure file includes text then please present the font as Ariel, Helvetica, or Verdana. This will mean that it matches the typeset text.
NOTE: All figures must be uploaded separately as supplementary files during the submission process, if possible in colour and at a resolution of at least 300dpi. Each file should not be more than 20MB. Standard formats accepted are: JPG, TIFF, GIF, PNG, EPS. For line drawings, please provide the original vector file (e.g. .ai, or .eps).
Tables must be created using a word processor's table function, not tabbed text.
Tables should be included in the manuscript. The final layout will place the tables as close to their first citation as possible.
All tables must be cited within the main text, numbered with Arabic numerals in consecutive order (e.g. Table 1, Table 2, etc.). The shortened word Tab should not be used to cite a table.
Each table must have an accompanying descriptive title. This should clearly and concisely summarise the content and/or use of the table. A short additional table legend is optional to offer a further description of the table. The table title and legend should be placed underneath the table.
Tables should not include:
NOTE: If there are more columns than can fit on a single page, then the table will be placed horizontally on the page. If it still can't fit horizontally on a page, the table will be broken into two.
Every use of information from other sources must be cited in the text so that it is clear that external material has been used.
If the author is already mentioned in the main text then the year should follow the name within parenthesis.
If the author name is not mentioned in the main text then the surname and year should be inserted, in parenthesis, after the relevant text. Multiple citations should be separated by semi-colon and follow alphabetical order.
If three or fewer authors are cited from the same citation then all should be listed. If four or more authors are part of the citation then et al. should follow the first author name.
If citations are used from the same author and the same year, then a lowercase letter, starting from a, should be placed after the year.
If specific pages are being cited then the page number should follow the year, after a colon.
For publications authored and published by organisations, use the short form of the organisations name or its acronym in lieu of the full name.
Please do not include URLs in parenthetical citations, but rather cite the author or page title and include all details, including the URL, in the reference list.
All citations must be listed at the end of the text file, in alphabetical order of authors surnames.
All reading materials should be included in References works which have not been cited within the main text, but which the author wishes to share with the reader, must be cited as additional information in endnotes explaining the relevance of the work. This will ensure that all works within the reference list are cited within the text.
NOTE: If multiple works by the same author are being listed, please re-type the authors name out for each entry, rather than using a long dash.
NOTE: DOIs should be included for all reference entries, where possible.
This journal recommends, but does not require, the Harvard system of references see below for examples of how to format. Authors not submitting in Harvard style must ensure their references are internally consistent within the manuscript.
Author, A A Year Title. Place of publication: Publisher.
Adam, D J 1984 Stakeholder analysis. 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Silverman, D F and Propp, K K (eds.) 1990 The active interview. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage.
Achebe, C 1995 Colonialist Criticism. In: Ashcroft, B et al The Post Colonial Studies Reader. London: Routledge. pp. 5761.
NOTE: If multiple works by the same author are being listed, please re-type the authors name out for each entry, rather than using a long dash.
Author, A Year Title. Journal name, vol(issue): page. DOI
Martin, L 2010 Bombs, bodies and biopolitics: Securitizing the subject at airport security. Social and Cultural Geography, 11(1): 17-34. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14649360903414585
NOTE: Please include DOIs for all journal articles where possible.
Author, A Year Title. Newspaper, date of publication, page.
Tate, P 2007 Illicit organ trade increasing. The Jordan Times, 6 June, p. 3.
Author, A Year Title of chaper. In: Title of conference proceedings, location, date, pp. page.
Lynch, M 2003 Dialogue in an age of terror. In: The Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association, Philadelphia, PA on 18 August 2003, pp. 4-7.
Author group Year Title. Place of publication: Publisher
World Health Organization 2010 The world health report Health systems financing: the path to universal coverage. Geneva, Switzerland: WHO.
Author, A Year Title. Unpublished thesis (PhD), institution.
Yudis, A 2004 Failed responsibility of the media in the war on Iraq. Unpublished thesis (PhD), University of Manchester.
Author, A Year Title, date of publication. Available at URL [Last accessed date month year].
Pascual, Amb. C 2005 Stabilization and Reconstruction: Building peace in a hostile environment. Prepared statement to Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, 16 June 2005. Available at http://2001-2009.state.gov/s/crs/rls/rm/48644.htm [Last accessed 14 August 2012].
As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
This journal is published by the Open Library of Humanities. Unlike many open-access publishers, the Open Library of Humanities does not charge any author fees. This does not mean that we do not have costs. Instead, our costs are paid by an international library consortium.
If your institution is not currently supporting the platform, we request that you ask your librarian to sign up. The OLH is extremely cost effective and is a not-for-profit charity. However, while we cannot function without financial support and we encourage universities to sign up, institutional commitment is not required to publish with us.
Fee waivers do not apply at the Open Library of Humanities because our funding model does not rely on author charges.