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ECPR Press > Become an Author >  Guidelines for Studies in European Political Science Series

Guidelines for Submission of Proposals for the Studies in European Political Science Series

We judge a book's suitability for publication based on your proposal, which we send to specialist, external reviewers for their opinion. In order for the reviewers to judge your work effectively and fairly, please include in your book proposal the following:

A working title

Titles are important. Appearing in catalogues, publicity material, and reference lists, they signal a book's subject area and how it relates to other work in the field. For librarians, booksellers, and the general reader, a book's title is the main indication of its content, so please give it careful thought. If you are offered a contract, the Press Editors will discuss with you the best wording for your book's main title and its second deck, if required.

Authors' and Editors' details

Provide the name, postal address and email of all your book's contributors and editors, and specify to whom you would like postal and e-correspondence sent.

Origin of the project

The majority of books in the SEPS series are edited volumes that arise from conferences or funded research-based projects. The series is strongly associated with cutting-edge research originating from the ECPR’s Joint Sessions of Workshops, Research Sessions, and the General Conference. Not all contributors to the originating event/project need to be included, but you can recruit new contributors, if this makes the volume more coherent.

When completing your proposal, please provide brief background information on when and how your proposed volume originated. Please note that we do not publish conference proceedings.

Statement of the book's aims

Briefly and concisely state the main themes and objectives of the proposed volume. Define the gap in existing research that it will fill, and explain why there is a need for it. Describe what you are doing differently, or in a more innovative way, or better, than existing books.

Detailed synopsis and provisional contents list

Provide a structured synopsis of not more than 5,000 words. A simple list of chapter headings is not enough for a reviewer to go on, so after each chapter heading, write a paragraph explaining what you intend to cover. Make it clear that the chapters are structured logically and integrated around a coherent central research problem (research questions). If the book includes case studies, will they appeal to an international audience?

Readership

Identify as accurately as possible your intended readership. The target group is usually academic specialists but in some cases a book may also be attractive to certain groups of students, practitioners or professionals in your field; if so, please specify. If the book is relevant to students, please specify the level. If possible, identify subsidiary markets and courses. And if there are any international markets or areas of topical interest you feel are relevant, please also outline these.

Review of competitive works

Briefly review the main books that you consider competition to this volume. As fairly as possible, try to identify the strengths and weaknesses of each of these titles. Explain how your book will differ from its competition, what it offers that the others don’t, or how it furthers research or offers a better approach to the subject. You may feel that there are no direct rivals, but please review the books which are most similar.

Sample chapters

Please include these, indicating whether or not they have been revised in view of publication. If not, please indicate clearly the changes that will need to be made. Sample chapters should give a reviewer an impression of style and approach, and be representative of the work as a whole. In many cases, a draft introductory chapter is preferable, unless the description of the aims and scope is already indicative of what the introduction will look like. If the book is a mixture of theoretical and empirical chapters, try to provide samples of both. The more chapters you submit the firmer the offer of a contract is likely to be (see ‘Reviewing process’ below).

Apparatus

Will the book include tables, graphs, photographs, drawings, cases, questions, problems, glossaries, appendices, etc? Most books have a bibliography or list of references at the end, but you can also have the list of references at the end of each chapter.

Length of manuscript

The standard length of the volumes published in this series is approximately 100,000 words or 220 pages, with an average of 500 words per page. (For comparison, A4 manuscript pages, set in 10pt Times New Roman and double line spaced, are normally around 300 words per page.)

However, we are happy to consider your book's length in relation to its scope and nature. We therefore accept shorter (80–90,000-word) and longer (120–150,000-word) manuscripts for a maximum of roughly 300–320 printed pages, inclusive of index, bibliography, tables, figures and appendices. But do bear in mind that the longer the book, the higher the production cost and the trickier it is to get a coherent focus – which could be to the detriment of the book's overall quality.

Time schedule

Do you have a timetable for completion? What percentage of the material is complete? Please indicate a reasonable date for delivery of the final manuscript (see ‘Reviewing process’ below).

Contributors' curriculum vitae

Please enclose a brief CV of the book’s author(s) and editor(s), giving as much information as possible about the individual contributors. It is important that we have their institutional affiliations, if nothing else.

Submitting your proposal

Use the online form at http://press.ecpr.eu/become_an_author.asp Send sample chapters by email to editorial@ecpr.eu

Reviewing process

The proposal and sample chapters will be assessed by the Editors. If they feel the book might be appropriate for the SEPS series, the proposal will be sent for peer review by up to three external academics. Please understand that finding competent reviewers might take some time. If necessary, anonymous reviews will be sent to the book's editor(s), who will be invited to comment on the issues raised. A modification of the original proposal might then be required, which in some cases may result in a further external assessment of either the proposal or the manuscript.

We aim to complete the review process within three months of receipt of the proposal. If the review is positive, the proposal will be accepted for publication, at which stage we will offer you a contract. The decision to accept, or not, is taken by the Press Editors in association with our publishing professionals on mainly scientific, but also on commercial grounds.

Contracts offered on the basis of a proposal and sample chapters are subject to confirmation on the delivery of the final manuscript, which needs to reflect what was promised in the proposal. The final assessment will be made either in house or by the external reviewers, depending on individual circumstances.

Submitting your manuscript

Once an agreement has been reached, you will receive instructions on house style and the preparation of your manuscript for submission. If you would like guidance at an earlier stage, write to us at editorial@ecpr.eu.

Further questions?

If there's anything else you'd like to ask, please don't hesitate to contact us at editorial@ecpr.eu

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