Special Issue Guidelines

A special issue, which is organized and led by the recognized subject expert(s), is a collection of articles focusing on a specific area of research that has broad appeal. Articles submitted to a special issue will follow the same editorial process and quality control as the regular papers, including the same external peer review process. Upon acceptance, the article will be immediately published in a regular issue of the journal and will be listed together on the special issue website, with a label that the article belongs to the Special Issue. LIDSEN publishes all journals under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) License in open access. Authors own the copyright to the article, and the article can be free to access, distribute, and reuse provided that the original work is correctly cited.

Submission and Approval of a Special Issue Proposal

You may be able to guest edit a special issue in two ways: (1) A member of the Editorial Board (including the Editor-in-Chief), or the Journal Editorial Office contacts you and invites you to serve as a guest editor for a special issue on a specific topic, or (2) You submit a special issue proposal directly to the Editorial Office. If you are considering submitting a special issue proposal, you might find the following checklist helpful.

Checklist for the special issue proposal:

  • The Journal for which you plan to submit your proposal.
  • Title of the proposed special issue: The special issue’s topic should be within the aims and scope of the journal.
  • Submission Deadline: Given the time potential authors may spend preparing their articles, we suggest that special issues open for submissions for at least seven months. The Editorial Office will assist in the scheduling of the Special Issue once the proposal is approved.
  • List of guest editor(s): In this section, personal information of the guest editor(s) should be included along with a brief explanation of why they are qualified to edit the special issue on the proposed topic. Personal information: name, affiliation, e-mail address, research interests, homepage (if any). If multiple guest editors are involved, please indicate the order of the guest editors and identify individual responsibilities and work distribution as a team.
  • Summary and keywords of the special issue: Please prepare a short introduction (about 100-200 words) that indicates the topic scope and significance of the special issue, and provide some keywords (about 3-10 keywords) to specify its topic.
  • A list of potential contributors (if any): In this section, please include the names, emails, and affiliations of the potential contributors and the tentative title (optionally) of the planned paper.

Proposals for special issues should be sent to the journal's Editorial Office, whose contact information is available on the journal’s website. The journal’s Editorial Team and the Editor-in-Chief will oversee the guest editor's appointment and the special issue proposal to ensure the relevant materials meet the journal's scope and quality requirements. If a decision is made on the proposal, the journal's Editorial Office will feedback to you.

Guidelines for Guest Editor

Responsibilities of Guest Editor

Special Issue Launch: Preparing the special issue information, including the title, summary, and keywords, to introduce the special issue.

Call for Papers: Guest editors may invite potential authors they deem appropriate. The Editorial Office can provide solicitation support, if needed, by either providing the guest editors with a list of potential authors or sending invitations to potential authors on behalf of the guest editors.

Promoting Special Issue: Guest editors may promote special issues through ways such as email signatures, social media, or academic events (if any).

Manuscript Processing: Pre-checking articles to ensure they fit the scope of the special issue and the journal, and meet the ethical and quality requirements for further peer review by external experts; supervising the peer-review process and making decisions on articles based on the collected review reports. To ensure objectivity, the journal's Internal Editor will be responsible for inviting at least two independent external experts to peer review the article. Guest Editors may be asked to provide comments where reviews are divergent or where particular concerns arise for which the journal would like their input.

Ethical Guidelines for Guest Editor

LIDSEN is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). We strictly adhere to the code of publication ethics set forth by COPE and deal with suspected ethical issues in accordance with its Core Practices.

Confidentiality: Protect the confidentiality of authors’ material and remind reviewers to do so as well. Single-blinded peer review is adopted in our editorial process so the identity of reviewers is not disclosed to authors unless they wish to disclose their names.

Competing Interests: Authors, peer reviewers, and editors should disclose the potential competing interests when fulfilling their roles in the process of article review and publication. Where a conflict with the content or authors of a manuscript exists, reviewing or making decisions on the manuscript should be avoided and the journal will seek alternative reviewers or editors.

Citation Policy: Reviewers and editors are welcome to guide authors in expanding their literature review, but this should not be done only for the purpose of increasing citations to their own or colleagues' publications or to journals they are associated with.

Guest editors should realize that special issues are subject to the same ethical guidelines as regular issues of the journal. Please read the detailed ethical guidelines here.

Editorial Process for Submissions to the Special Issue

Submission and peer review of special issue articles should be managed using the LIDSEN Submission System. Articles submitted to a special issue will follow the same editorial process and quality control as the regular papers. Single-blinded peer review is adopted in our editorial process which means reviewers are anonymous. At least two independent review reports are collected for each article. Guest editors are mainly responsible for pre-checking and decision-making for the articles, for which they are expected to evaluate the following:


  • Whether the manuscript falls within the scope of the special issue and the journal;
  • Whether the information regarding authorship is reliable;
  • Whether presentation meets our selection standards;
  • Whether required information regarding research ethics is included in the manuscript;
  • Whether the manuscript potentially suffers plagiarism. The journal will conduct an assay using iThenticate to check the similarity of submissions against previously published works.

Manuscript decision-making

  • Whether the reviewers are qualified and suitable to review the manuscript;
  • Whether the reviews are thorough and comments are adequate;
  • Whether the authors have properly responded to reviewers’ comments;
  • Whether the manuscript now meets the standard for publication.

The Editor-in-Chief and members of the Editorial Board of the journal have the right to make the final judgment on the decision recommended by the guest editor. In cases where there is a disagreement between the guest editor and the reviewer in certain respects, where there is a conflict of interest between the guest editor and the author, or where a guest editor is unable to make a timely reply to the Editorial Office regarding manuscript decisions, the Editor-in-Chief or an Editorial Board member with the appropriate research background will be invited to check and make decisions for articles.

Special issues may publish articles from guest editors, but the number of such submissions should be limited to 25% of the total submissions in the special issue to ensure the diversity of authors in the field. Please be aware that such submissions will be handled independently of the guest editors by a member of the journal’s Editorial Board.

Once a manuscript is accepted, the Editorial Office will be responsible for typesetting and language editing, and then return to the authors for proofreading before publication. Authors from non-native English-speaking countries will benefit from the FREE Language Polishing Service. LIDSEN distributes articles under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) License in an open-access model, and the copyright of the article is retained by the author(s).