Theme Editors

NAAR Editorial Policy

How to Become a Theme Editor
How to Produce and Publish a Theme Issue of NJAR

Guidelines for Theme Editors

The Nordic Journal of Architectural Research or NJAR is ranked as a highly acclaimed research publication channel (level 2) in Norway, Denmark, and Finland. The language of publication is English (UK) and the Nordic languages Swedish, Norwegian and Danish. It is possible to publish a paper in Finnish or Icelandic, if the paper is also translated into English. All papers written in Nordic languages shall have a summary in English of maximum 450 words. 
 
The journal is digital. Only subscribers of NJAR have access to papers in the journal during the first year. After one year, all papers are freely available on the website through open access. Authors are permitted to deposit the publisher's version/PDF of their paper in an institutional repository, without fee or an embargo.
 
The journal publishes so-called mixed issues and theme issues containing original papers that have not been published elsewhere. The present guidelines apply to potential theme editors who would like to publish a theme issue on a specific topic in cooperation with chief editors of NJAR and members of the NAAR Board. It is important that theme editors follow the guidelines and ask for advice when needed. The process can be summarized in seven steps:
 
Step One – The First Contact
A theme issue of NJAR may typically comprise 5–8 papers.1 The first step is to contact one of the chief editors or a board member of NAAR and express to him or her that you would like to make a NJAR theme issue. The theme has to fit into the journal’s overall scope: architectural research, that is, research in the disciplines of architecture, landscape architecture, and urban planning. 
 
Describe your theme in an abstract of 300–400 words. Send the abstract to nordiskarkitekturforskning@gmail.com. The abstract should describe and theoretically frame the theme and research questions of your proposed issue. It should also state the required number of papers and a proposal for an editorial committee (including the responsible theme editor), which may then be supplemented by members of the NAAR Board. At least one of the theme editors must have an affiliation to a university in a Nordic country. Send your CV along with your abstract to document your research qualifications and affiliations. There must be no conflict of interest in relation to the proposed theme and its editorial committee.2
 
Step Two – Priority and Decision
The NAAR Board will discuss submitted proposals at its annual editorial meeting and prioritize among suggested themes for theme issues. Typically, 4–5 theme issues are in the process of being developed at NJAR. If your proposal is accepted, the members of the NAAR Board shall appoint to the theme issue: supplementary persons, one of the chief editors of NJAR, and a board member from NAAR. Their task is to check the editorial work and support you with scholarly advice and practical information. The number of responsible editors is recommended to be three – max. four – persons (theme editor(s), chief editor, and NAAR board member).
 
If during the process there are differences of opinion between the theme editor(s) and the responsible chief editor of NJAR, the chief editor or the president of NAAR shall have the final word. 
 
Step Three – Call for Abstracts and Papers
The third step is writing a call for abstracts for the theme issue. The call has to be posted on NAAR’s website and sent out in the NAAR network after acceptance of its wording by the the chief editor and the NAAR board.3 We also strongly encourage the dissemination of the call for abstracts in appropriate research networks outside NAAR. The call must be posted on the NAAR website at least three months before the submission deadline. 
 
Based on promising abstracts that the editors receive a call for papers can be sent out to selected authors. It is important that interested researchers are given sufficient time to contribute papers to the theme issue.
 
Step Four – The Theme Editors and Their Responsibilities in the Production of the Theme Issue
The theme editor(s) is responsible for planning the theme issue, and together with the chief editor and the member of the NAAR Board, he or she will make a preliminary selection of submitted papers, which, after processing, may become approved papers in the journal. The chief editor and the theme editor(s) are responsible for contact with authors and peer reviewers. It is the responsibility of both the theme editor(s) and the chief editor to obtain transparency in the work of the editorial committee. The NAAR website provides guidelines to the authors – visit the webpage: http://arkitekturforskning.net/na/information/authors.
 
Step Five – The Review Process
The fifth step is the review process. All papers selected by the editors are subject to doubleblind peer review. Papers shall be reviewed by two relevant senior researchers (PhDs) following the NAAR blind peer review system. Identities of both authors and reviewers should not be known to each other. Prior to review, the papers should thus be anonymized by the responsible editor(s). The chosen peer reviewers must use the NJAR template, stating in their review whether the reviewed paper is accepted or rejected. 
 
The review reports have to be made anonymous before being sent to the authors by removing the reviewers’ names. The authors shall respond to proposed/recommended changes by the peer reviews and comment on how their papers have been revised/improved to the theme editor(s) / editorial committee. 
 
In dialogue with the authors the theme editor (s)/editorial committee can edit and finalise papers that only require minor revisions. Papers that require major revisions must, however, be rewritten by the authors and approved a second time by the reviewers. Some papers may have to be revised several times. 
 
Step Six – Publishing and Preliminary Timetable
Planning for a theme issue and reviewing papers is a time-consuming process. However, it is necessary to uphold the scientific quality of NJAR. The time needed – from making a call for  papers public on the website of NAAR/NJAR to publishing the theme issue – can be estimated at 12 months, if everything goes according to plan. 

The theme editor(s) and the chief editor write an editorial text – an introduction – to the theme issue. The language of the approved papers and of the editors’ introduction should be checked professionally (proofread) before layout and graphic design of the journal. Each author will be required to undertake a final reading and language check of his or her paper. There has to be a final check of the whole theme issue by the chief editor, however, before sending the papers for typesetting. The layout and graphic design need to be checked by the responsible editor(s) for the theme issue in cooperation with the chief editor. Financial support for final English proofreading can to some extent be obtained from NAAR. Image rights must be obtained by the authors, who are responsible for the copyrights of all illustrations in their papers.
 
Step seven – Documentation 
The final step is to document the process. Since NJAR is a scientific journal ranked at the prestigious level 2, this is of the utmost importance, especially if there are changes in the responsibilities of the editorial committee during the process. As a general principle the documentation should contain: 
 
- The theme editor(s)’ theme issue abstract and a CV 
- The names and email addresses of the editorial committee members 
- The theme editor(s)’ abstract
- The call for abstracts 
- Call for papers 
- Original approved papers from the authors 
- Review reports from the peer reviewers 
- Responses from authors to review reports 
- Improved papers from authors after peer review 
- Documentation of final language check 
- Important emails from authors and reviewers 
- List of reviewers showing their academic affiliations
- Obtained copyrights for illustrations 
 
The following procedures summarise the key aspects of the peer review process: 
 
•  The papers should follow the “authors’ guideline” of NJAR 
•  Scientific papers must be anonymised prior to the review in order to meet the demands for a double-blind review process 
•  The reviewers must use the journal's template for their assessment of papers 
•  The reviewers must be qualified senior researchers with a PhD degree 
•  Both reviews have to approve the paper before publishing (in case of major revisions, the reviewers must be sent the revised version for a second review) 
 
1 A theme issue must include at minimum four papers.
2 As theme editor or chief editor, you cannot be in charge of the process of peer reviewing papers written by you or your close colleagues. Neither can you peer review papers written by close family members or your cohabiting partner. You may not have any personal gain or further the interests or research of your institution to the detriment of others. As a matter of course, a theme editor or chief editor, whose paper has been included in a theme issue or who has any other special personal interest in the outcome of the issue, shall be disqualified from participating in the peer review process for the theme issue in question. Neither can authors whose papers are included in a theme issue do a peer review of papers that have been included in the theme issue written by other authors.
3 The NAAR President and Vice President need to be informed about the Call for Papers.