Instructions for Special Issue Proposals

The The editors of IJCSA welcome proposals for special electronic issues on topics that fall within the scope of the journal. As IJCSA is only able to publish one to two issues per year, the editors will seek to identify the proposals of the highest quality for publication.

Special issues of IJCSA should offer

  • either an authoritative review of current thinking and debates in a particular area of computer science, that at the same time takes these debates forward
  • and/or a presentation of state-of-the-art analysis within an area of current approach and academic interest, that thus informs approach debate in this area.

They should:

  • Advance understanding of topics in the computer science and applications
  • Provide pointers to future trends and challenges.
Each special issue is the responsibility of guest editor(s). Those wishing to guest edit a special issue should prepare a proposal as outlined below, then send this to the Editor-in-Chief (ijcsa . eic @ gmail . com). Please use the  "SI proposal: <Title of your SI>" as the subject line. On the basis of the proposal, the editor-in-chief of IJCSA will decide whether or not the guest editor(s) should proceed with preparation of the special issue.

Proposals should:

  1. Set out the importance of the area and topics that the special issue will focus on;
  2. Explain the anticipated contribution of the special issue in advancing understanding in this area;
  3. Identify papers and authors for possible inclusion in the special issue, with a brief description of each paper. (These papers do not need to have been written at the time that the proposal is presented, although our assumption is that most will be based on work already in progress). Where a given author(s) has published extensively on a subject already, it is necessary to have some indication of the new contribution to be made by the proposed paper for the special issue;
  4. Indicate the time-scale in which the special issue could be produced (paper writing, reviewing, and submission of final copies to IJCSA) assuming the proposal is accepted.

To assist the editors in understanding how the papers in the proposal would contribute to a coherent special issue, the proposal should include a matrix that:

  • Lists the key policy issues that the special issue intends to address
  • Shows which papers will contribute to our understanding of which policy issues.

This matrix can also act as a useful tool during the preparation of a special issue, by showing authors the overall context of the issue and how their paper is supposed to contribute to this.

An issue of IJCSA should be 30,000-35,000 words long, meaning a maximum of eight to ten papers if these are on average 3200 words long (including abstract, appendices, tables etc). Special issues with fewer, longer papers are also possible. Proposals should include more possible papers than can be included in the eventual issue. This is so that the refereeing process can select the best 8/9/10 papers for final inclusion in the issue.

Most special issues will include some form of overview paper that sets out the key policy issues in the area concerned (with appropriate reference to existing literature) and summarizes the contribution of the special issue to furthering understanding of them. All papers within the special issue should address explicitly one or more of the policy issues highlighted in the overview paper. It should not just be left to the overview paper to draw out the policy implications of the assembled papers.

Editing a "Successful" Special Issue

Once a proposal has been approved in principle by the Editor-in-Chief, it is the responsibility of the Guest Editor(s) to deliver the soft copy of entire issue to IJCSA within the agreed time-scale. Guest Editors must organize a double-blind reviewing process for all papers submitted for inclusion in the special issue, so as to:

  • Identify those papers to be finally included in the special issue
  • Strengthen these papers, so as to ensure the highest possible standards for the issue.

The editors of IJCSA require to see copies of all correspondence between reviewers and Guest Editors at the time that the completed draft of the special issue is submitted to IJCSA.

Guest Editors should keep the editor-in-chief of IJCSA informed by e-mail of progress in preparing the special issue and in particular alert them in advance if agreed deadlines are likely to slip.

Once the final selection of papers has been made and final versions (as per IJCSA format guidelines) of all these have been received, the Guest Editors should send electronic copies (e-mail attachment / soft copy in CD) of all camera-ready papers alongwith scanned copies of duly signed copyright forms to Editor-in-Chief. At the same time, they should send soft copies of the correspondence with reviewers to the Editor-in-chief.

The editor-in-chief of IJCSA will then check the quality of the issue before forwarding it to Press for publication. The Editors reserve the right to request a third review of papers and, if necessary, to request modifications to an issue before approving it for publication. However, the procedures set out above are designed to minimize the need for such measures.

Special Sections
The editors of IJCSA also welcome proposals for special sections within an issue of the journal (a total of 3-4 papers, including a brief introductory piece). The procedures for preparing proposals and editing “successful” special sections are the same as for special issues, with the exception of the number of papers involved.

Publication Charges
To defray the online publication charges, special issue (conference) organizer(s) are requested to contribute in the online publication cost of their IJCSA special issue. The details should be requested from the Editor-in-chief. We do not charge fee from individual authors.

For more details contact Editor-in-Chief <ijcsa . eic @ gmail . com>.