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Journal Publishing

This guide supports journal publishing initiatives across NYU by providing information about the various issues involved in journal publishing, including how to access NYU services that support this work.

Getting Started

There are many tasks involved in publishing a journal and just as many ways to approach them. Below are some toolkits and checklists that provide a more comprehensive overview of the types of work involved in journal publishing. Your journal may not need to do everything listed here, but it can be helpful to have a more complete understanding of the types of work that could be involved.

Publication Schedule

As you develop your journal, you want to decide how often you will publish. To grow an audience, you will want to make sure you publish at regular intervals. You need not publish continually, but setting expectations and a steady set of calls for submissions will raise the visibility of your journal and agenda.

Keep in mind that you will need to balance different types of work and several calendars. A Managing Editor can organize and schedule calls, submissions, author communications, and publication preparation. These tasks can be delegated across committees, but it’s important to coordinate the many moving pieces. Some stages of the process can be outsourced at a cost – see the Platforms page for more info. If you choose not to do your processing in house, you may need to dedicate journal efforts to fundraising.

Documentation should happen as you go and receive regular revision. It’s important to keep in mind how you will onboard new editors and how you communicate your process to contributors.

Submissions Management

As editors and publishers of a journal, you have to juggle many articles at their different stages of publication. There is software designed to help manage submissions, but implementing a system is as important as finding one. Once you establish your publication schedule, you will need to build in time for calls to be open, editors to review, desk rejections and reviewer requests to be sent, reviews to be collected, decisions to be made, communications with authors about reviews, time for revisions, final editorial decisions, copy editing, as well as preparation for publication. Below are two of the most common tools used for submissions management:

  • Open Journal Systems (OJS) is an online journal publishing platform that includes submission management. The OJS submissions management documentation has additional information about what services they provide and how to use them.
  • Submittable is a fee-based service used by journal publishers and university presses to manage author submissions and the editorial review process. The Submittable publication and journals page has more information about their services, along with the Submittable FAQ page for Publishers and Literary Journals.  
  • Using shared folders and spreadsheets, such as Google Drive or Microsoft OneDrive, can be a simple yet effective approach for managing submissions. For example, editors can create text documents with email templates (e.g. acceptance letters, peer review requests) or use spreadsheet software for tracking the publication cycle for individual submissions.