Instructions to Authors

The JOP prefers manuscripts that are approximately 25-35 pages long, formatted as explained below. We will not review papers that are under consideration for publication elsewhere, whose contents have been substantially published before, or that exceed 35 pages formatted in accordance with the instructions below.

Manuscripts submitted for review should format all the text and appendix materials double-spaced in a standard 12-point type font. Footnotes and bibliographic citations should be double-spaced using the same font size as the used in the body of manuscript; all manuscripts need to have a separate references section at the end of the manuscript which is ordered alphabetically. Tables and figures may be single-spaced but should be printed at the end of the manuscript, each one on a separate page. Papers accepted for publication must be prepared by the author in accordance with more detailed requirements for headings, bibliographic citations, tables, figures, and related matters. Instructions regarding these requirements are made available at the time papers are accepted.

Any manuscript stating that additional information is available on a website or to interested readers upon request should include that material in a clearly marked, separate appendix file which must be submitted as "On-line Appendix" in Editorial Manager; note that the appendix material does not count against the 35 page limit of the submitted file. Authors should be aware, however, that reviewers are under no obligation to review such materials.  (Upon publication, these files will be archived online as part of the article.)

An abstract is required for all submitted manuscripts. The abstract should be a single paragraph of 150 words or less that succinctly describes the research question addressed, the analytical approach and the major findings of the manuscript. References and citations to other work should not be included in the abstract.

Manuscripts submitted to The Journal of Politics should follow the guidelines provided in The JOP Style Guide. For more detailed information on stylistic requirements, authors can also consult the most recent edition of The Chicago Manual of Style or the Style Manual for Political Science, 2006 Revised Edition (APSA Committee on Publications). 

Author Self-Identification Issues: The Journal of Politics employs a double-blind review process. Therefore, authors should remove all self-identification information from the version of the manuscript that will be sent out to referrees. Of course, this pertains to names, institutional affiliations, and addresses that normally appear on the title page or in running headers/footers and the like. Authors should also remove all acknowledgments, expressions of gratitude, and statements about grants or other financial support for the research reported in the manuscript. Generally, any references to personal interactions with other political scientists (e.g., a note stating “I received the data from__”) should be taken out. Authors may leave citations to their own work in the manuscript, as long as those citations refer to published work and do not self-identify themselves in any way (i.e., no personal pronouns). Authors should avoid citations to their doctoral dissertations or to forthcoming publications. Any such material can easily be added back into the manuscript, if it is accepted for publication.

Manuscript Submission Procedures:  All manuscript submissions must be made on-line at   If you have already submitted a paper or a review to The Journal of Politics through Editorial Manager, then you are registered.  If you have not used this system and want to submit a paper, you must first register as an author.  When you have logged on as an author, click on “Submit a Manuscript,” and follow the on-line instructions.

You will be asked to upload an anonymous version of the manuscript.  Since final versions of accepted papers must be forwarded to the publisher as either a Word document or a LaTex file (with the related PDF), we strongly prefer that initial submissions use one of these file types (that is, either a Word file or a PDF created using LaTex).  Once you upload your original document, an anonymous PDF file will be created, and it will be sent to your Editorial Manager author page for your approval.  This should only take a few minutes.  You must open the PDF and then approve it for review.  It will then be forwarded to the editorial office.

The JOP operates as fully as possible using a double-blind review system and seeks to uphold appropriate professional and ethical principles in our work. During the submissions process authors are asked to recommend reviewers as well as identify reviewers who they would oppose. Please do not identify co-authors, dissertation advisors or comittee members or current colleagues as recommended authors.

Questions regarding the manuscript submission process should be sent to Authors may check on the status of their manuscript by accessing their author page in Editorial Manager.

Editorial Process and Turnaround Time: The editors will make all final decisions jointly, upon the advice of their reviewers and members of the editorial board. Manuscripts that the editors deem as failing to meet the particular intellectual goals of the journal, either in substance or style, will not be sent out for review.

The Journal of Politics Editors and the JOP office staff make every effort to process manuscripts as quickly as possible. However, the double-blind refereeing process is invariably rather slow. It is impossible to predict the length of time that will be required to process any given manuscript. As noted by an editor at a distinguished University press, "these caravans move only as fast as the slowest camel in the pack."

As a general guideline, authors should allow three months from the date of submission for a publication decision. Occasionally, the review process will take longer than that. In some cases, however, the Editors will make a decision more quickly in an effort to provide responsible, efficient feedback to the author without exhausting the good spirit and expertise of our reviewers.
Effective January 2014, the editors will not accept appeals except in rare cases involving procedural errors relating to the assignment or actions (but not opinions) of reviewers.

Our current time between final decisions and print publications is about 9-12 months. 

Once manuscripts have been through final copyediting and typesetting, they will be posted online as an "Ahead of Print" publication by the University of Chicago Press.  Please note that once papers are posted online, we cannot make any subsequent changes; even though it is "only" online, it still serves as the paper of record. If a significant error is discovered after online publication you should contact the editors to decide if there is a need to publish a separate corrigendum/erratum linked to the online version.  "Significant errors" do not include typographical or style issues, among other items that should be resolved when authors approve page proofs.  Therefore, it is extremely important that you read the proof you are sent and revise them carefully to the best of your ability to avoid errors.


Editorial Office Schedule: The JOP does not process newly submitted manuscripts between August 1 and 31 or between December 20 and January 2. During those times, however, reviews will be processed and decision letters sent out as time allows.  In December 2014, we may not accept submissions after December 13, to allow time for the editorial transition.  Details on that date will be posted online closer to that time.