Guidelines For Authors

Manuscript submission takes place through Island Studies Journal‘s ScholarOne Manuscripts site:

If you are a first-time user, please click ‘Create an Account’ on the ScholarOne Manuscripts site to get started. 

Island Studies Journal publishes peer-reviewed research papers:

  • advancing and critiquing the study of issues affecting or involving islands or archipelagos — these may be small islands or large islands, sparsely populated and remote islands or densely urbanized islands at the centre of power;
  • reviewing or providing a fresh perspective on existing and upcoming ‘island studies’ literature;
  • the comparative study of islands and their issues, policies, and developments;
  • seeing islands as part of complex systems of regional or global interaction and therefore also focusing on ‘island-mainland’, ‘island-island’, and ‘island-sea’ relations and comparisons;
  • encouraging the development of island studies, the interdisciplinary and pluridisciplinary study of islands.

Authors are expected to engage with the existing body of island studies and/or ocean studies literature, as found not only in ISJ but also in other journals and publications. Papers must be both theoretically informed and methodologically appropriate for their purpose. In order to be accepted for publication, a paper needs to place island processes or ‘islandness’ at the centre of its analysis; it is not enough for an article to simply concern a place that happens to be an island.

In submitting a manuscript to ISJ, authors are also confirming that they do not have an identical or similar manuscript under review, or somehow being considered for publication, with any other journal at the same time.

Authors are encouraged to make a donation to ISJ in order to help support this open access, non-fee charging journal. Donations are purely voluntary and have no impact on the editorial process (that is, making a donation does not affect the chances that your submission will be published).

Style Guidelines

Manuscripts should be submitted in Microsoft Word (.docx) format. They must be between 5000 and 10,000 words long, single spaced, including references and any tables/figures (as set out below). These length guidelines also apply to resubmissions and revisions of existing submissions. The editors will request that authors shorten papers that exceed these length guidelines. PDF manuscripts are not acceptable.

Authors should state their full name, institutional affiliation, and e-mail address on a separate title page of their manuscript. The main document should be anonymized and otherwise written in such a way that the identity of the authors is not evident. Manuscripts must be accompanied by an abstract of 150-200 words and by five keywords suitable for online search purposes. Paper title, abstract, and keywords should be included at the start of the the uploaded main document.

Please remove all reference-linking field codes created by programs such as Endnote and Zotero prior to submitting your manuscript. Please also remove any automatic formatting from your paper (for section heads, sub-section heads, etc.). 

Illustrations: tables and figures

Articles may include a maximum of eight tables and/or figures, but authors are encouraged to limit themselves to those tables and/or figures that are necessary for their paper. Articles that exceed this maximum or that include more illustrations than the editor deems necessary will be returned to authors for revisions. The reason for this is that tables and figures add significantly to time and expense involved in preparing articles for publication.

Tables and figures also count toward the maximum article length: tables and figures smaller than half a page are regarded as equivalent to 250 words. Tables and figures between half a paper and one page are regarded as equivalent to 500 words. If an article exceeds the maximum equivalent length of 10,000 words when figures and tables are included, then it will be returned to authors for shortening. Note that this equivalent word count is in addition to text within tables: For example, if a small table includes 30 words, it will add a total of 280 words to the article. Papers must be a minimum of 5000 words in length excluding illustrations. 

Submit photographs as JPEG files with a resolution of 300 dots per inch (dpi). Submit other images as PNG files. Please both submit all photographs, tables, and other figures as separate file attachments and include these in the appropriate places in the manuscript to assist in the review process.

Please make sure that it is possible for your tables and figures to  fit legibly within the margins of a page (maximum width of 16 cm, maximum height of 24.5 cm). It is not acceptable to change the orientation of the page from portrait to landscape. In the case of JPEG files, this means a maximum width of 1800 pixels at 300 dpi. If you submit a larger image, then it will probably look worse when shrunken down to the size necessary to fit it into the journal. 

If you are designing a table using Microsoft Word or other software, that is fine; however, please ensure that all elements of your table fit within the page margins, and make the table as stylistically simple as possible, to increase the likelihood that it can be unproblematically transferred to our typesetting program. Do not work hard at making your table look pretty because unless you want your table to be reproduced as an image file (JPEG or PNG), it will be reformatted regardless.

If authors incorporate any images from third parties, they must ensure — at their own expense — that any copyrighted material submitted for publication in ISJ is appropriately cleared with the respective copyright holder(s). Do not include third-party images in your manuscript unless you have already received permission from the copyright holder to include it, or unless the source of the image clearly states that it may be freely reproduced. If your manuscript includes a third-party image that is not self-evidently freely reproducible (for example, if it has been appropriately attributed to its creator and linked to a file on Wikimedia), then please include a document from the image’s copyright holder confirming that you have the right to reproduce the image. If you are unable to determine the copyright holder of an image or are unable to contact the copyright holder, then you are not permitted to include the image in your submission. 

Sections, notes, and quotes

Each section and sub-section should be clearly labeled using a consistent notation format. Do not use sub-sub-sections.

Footnotes and endnotes are not permitted. All information must be placed in the body of the manuscript.

Please do not include an appendix to your paper. All relevant information should be included in the main body of the paper.

Quoted matter, whether in text or notes, should be between double quotation marks (“xxx”), with punctuation occurring within the quotation marks (“xxx,”). Quotations of 40 words or more should appear as a standalone, indented paragraph, without quotation marks.

Any acknowledgments should be terse and noted as the last paragraph prior to the references. 


All papers must be written in excellent English. Any regional variety of English is acceptable as long as authors are consistent. Papers that are not written in excellent English will be rejected immediately or sent back to the authors for revisions.

Citations and references

Citations and references follow the APA (American Psychological Association) format. You can find a guide to citing and referencing in line with the APA format here: You are welcome to use reference management software to assist you with your references and citations, but note that it will always be necessary for you to manually check to ensure that references are complete. 

Always provide a full citation; do not use (ibid.). Furthermore, please ensure that in-text citations always either immediately follow the author(s)’ name(s) or include the author(s)’ name(s). 

References by the same author should appear in descending order by date: i.e. the most recent reference should appear first, followed by the next most recent reference.


During the submission process, authors will be asked to recommend three potential reviewers for their paper. There is no guarantee that the journal editors will choose to send the manuscript to the recommended reviewers. Authors should not recommend reviewers from the same institution as them, with whom they have coauthored or coedited an academic work within the past four years, or who have personal knowledge of the manuscript in question or the research project on which it is based. Authors should also avoid recommending members of the ISJ editorial board as reviewers.

To submit your paper, please click here: