Special Issue Guidelines

Adopted September 2003

  1. ABC members may submit proposals for special issues of the International Journal of Business Communication and Business and Professional Communication Quarterly. Nonmembers may also serve as a special issue co-editor (or consulting editor) provided they serve with an active member of the association. Editorial experience by potential special issue editors and co-editors is not a prerequisite for selection. Members and nonmembers of ABC with recent special issue experience may be invited as special issue editors.
  2. The written proposals must include the following items and are limited to 1000 words with attachments:
    1. A title, statement of relevance, and outstanding features of the special issue clearly stated at the beginning of the proposal. This information identifies important reasons such as timeliness, innovativeness, relevance, and overall intellectual/pedagogical value. Features might include single- and/or multiple-method approaches, academic and practitioner authors, and point/counterpoint segments.
    2. Specific qualifications and background of each special editor including research record, editorial experience, and resource allocation from host institution.
    3. A listing of reviewers for the special issue. The special editor should consider who will review the manuscripts and include in the proposal a listing of these individuals along with an abbreviated discussion of their expertise on the special issue topic. This special editorial board should include some individuals currently serving on the official Editorial Boards of IJBC or BPCQ (whichever is the planned venue for the special issue). In the review process, at least one of the reviewers for each article submitted should be a regular Editorial Board member of that journal.
    4. Suggested timeline for special issue including its announcement, review process, and publication dates. (This timeline must align with current and future publication production constraints).
    5. A call for manuscript submissions. The proposal should include a draft copy of an open invitation for submissions, suitable for ABC conferences and journals as well as other venues. If the special editor also plans to solicit manuscripts from select individuals, a draft copy of that document should also be included. Furthermore, a rationale for selecting these individuals should be provided. (Although not a requirement, the invited authors and open invitation combination may help to ensure adequate page count and quality for the special issue. The Publications Board and Editors offer this combination only as a suggestion.)
    6. Budget issues. Any special financial items should be identified here.
  3. The written proposal will be sent to both The Publications Board and IJBC or BPCQ Editor. To ensure additional understanding by all involved, prospective special issue editors should discuss these topics in-depth with the appropriate journal editor in advance of proposal submission.
  4. The Publications Board and IJBC or BPCQ Editor will make a joint decision regarding the viability of the special issue proposal. A consensus decision-making process will be used. The Publication Board and IJBC or BPCQ Editor will notify the proposal author(s) of the decision within 30 days.
  5. The special editor’s role and responsibilities include using current journal processes and procedures (such as using refereed double-blind review procedures) for all manuscripts with at least two blind reviews approving them, informing invited paper authors that they must go through the review process, and ensuring that changes suggested for acceptance of the manuscript are made prior to conveying to the IJBC or BPCQ Editor. The special editor will provide the Editor a written progress report about the special issue in a timely manner.
  6. The IJBC or BPCQ Editor will be responsible for the final stages of publication. That is, once the special editor accepts papers, the IJCB or BPCQ Editor manages the last phases of publication. This includes editing copy, ensuring quality standards and meeting production deadlines. The special editor and IJCB or BPCQ Editor will work closely to ensure the final product is acceptable to all individuals involved in the special issue.
  7. The special editor and IJCB or BPCQ Editor must accommodate accepted manuscript(s) should the special issue not materialize or be overly full. The accepted manuscripts would appear in a regular issue of the appropriate journal---the International Journal of Business Communication or Business and Professional Communication Quarterly.
  8. The number of special issues of each journal may not exceed one in each publication year.
  9. An announcement for special issues will appear (yearly) in the first issue of each journal. The information will also be listed on the ABC Web Site for both journals.
  10. Any special issues will be included in the Editors’ annual report to The Publications Board and in the Publications Board’s evaluation of the journals.