Guide for Authors
Ethics in publishing
For information on Ethics in publishing and Ethical guidelines for journal publication see http://www.elsevier.com/publishingethics and http://www.elsevier.com/journal-authors/ethics.
Conflict of interestSubmission declaration and verification
All authors are requested to disclose any actual or potential conflict of interest including any financial, personal or other relationships with other people or organizations within three years of beginning the submitted work that could inappropriately influence, or be perceived to influence, their work. See also http://www.elsevier.com/conflictsofinterest. Further information and an example of a Conflict of Interest form can be found at: http://help.elsevier.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/286/p/7923.
Submission of an article implies that the work described has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture or academic thesis or as an electronic preprint, see http://www.elsevier.com/postingpolicy), that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere, that its publication is approved by all authors and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out, and that, if accepted, it will not be published elsewhere in the same form, in English or in any other language, including electronically without the written consent of the copyright-holder. To verify originality, your article may be checked by the originality detection service CrossCheck http://www.elsevier.com/editors/plagdetect.
Changes to authorshipCopyright
This policy concerns the addition, deletion, or rearrangement of author names in the authorship of accepted manuscripts:
Before the accepted manuscript is published in an online issue: Requests to add or remove an author, or to rearrange the author names, must be sent to the Journal Manager from the corresponding author of the accepted manuscript and must include: (a) the reason the name should be added or removed, or the author names rearranged and (b) written confirmation (e-mail, fax, letter) from all authors that they agree with the addition, removal or rearrangement. In the case of addition or removal of authors, this includes confirmation from the author being added or removed. Requests that are not sent by the corresponding author will be forwarded by the Journal Manager to the corresponding author, who must follow the procedure as described above. Note that: (1) Journal Managers will inform the Journal Editors of any such requests and (2) publication of the accepted manuscript in an online issue is suspended until authorship has been agreed.
After the accepted manuscript is published in an online issue: Any requests to add, delete, or rearrange author names in an article published in an online issue will follow the same policies as noted above and result in a corrigendum.
This journal offers authors a choice in publishing their research: Open Access and Subscription.
For Subscription articlesFor Open Access articles
Upon acceptance of an article, authors will be asked to complete a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' (for more information on this and copyright, see http://www.elsevier.com/copyright). An e-mail will be sent to the corresponding author confirming receipt of the manuscript together with a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' form or a link to the online version of this agreement.
Subscribers may reproduce tables of contents or prepare lists of articles including abstracts for internal circulation within their institutions. Permission of the Publisher is required for resale or distribution outside the institution and for all other derivative works, including compilations and translations (please consult http://www.elsevier.com/permissions). If excerpts from other copyrighted works are included, the author(s) must obtain written permission from the copyright owners and credit the source(s) in the article. Elsevier has preprinted forms for use by authors in these cases: please consult http://www.elsevier.com/permissions.
Upon acceptance of an article, authors will be asked to complete an 'Exclusive License Agreement' (for more information see http://www.elsevier.com/OAauthoragreement). Permitted reuse of open access articles is determined by the author's choice of user license (see http://www.elsevier.com/openaccesslicenses).
Retained author rightsRole of the funding source
As an author you (or your employer or institution) retain certain rights. For more information on author rights for:
Subscription articles please see http://www.elsevier.com/journal-authors/author-rights-and-responsibilities.
Open access articles please see http://www.elsevier.com/OAauthoragreement.
You are requested to identify who provided financial support for the conduct of the research and/or preparation of the article and to briefly describe the role of the sponsor(s), if any, in study design; in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the article for publication. If the funding source(s) had no such involvement then this should be stated. Please see http://www.elsevier.com/funding.
Funding body agreements and policiesOpen access
Elsevier has established agreements and developed policies to allow authors whose articles appear in journals published by Elsevier, to comply with potential manuscript archiving requirements as specified as conditions of their grant awards. To learn more about existing agreements and policies please visit http://www.elsevier.com/fundingbodies.
This journal offers authors a choice in publishing their research:
Open AccessAll articles published Open Access will be immediately and permanently free for everyone to read and download. Permitted reuse is defined by your choice of one of the following Creative Commons user licenses:
• Articles are freely available to both subscribers and the wider public with permitted reuse
• An Open Access publication fee is payable by authors or their research funder
• Articles are made available to subscribers as well as developing countries and patient groups through our access programs (http://www.elsevier.com/access)
• No Open Access publication fee
Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY): lets others distribute and copy the article, to create extracts, abstracts, and other revised versions, adaptations or derivative works of or from an article (such as a translation), to include in a collective work (such as an anthology), to text or data mine the article, even for commercial purposes, as long as they credit the author(s), do not represent the author as endorsing their adaptation of the article, and do not modify the article in such a way as to damage the author's honor or reputation.
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike (CC BY-NC-SA): for non-commercial purposes, lets others distribute and copy the article, to create extracts, abstracts and other revised versions, adaptations or derivative works of or from an article (such as a translation), to include in a collective work (such as an anthology), to text and data mine the article, as long as they credit the author(s), do not represent the author as endorsing their adaptation of the article, do not modify the article in such a way as to damage the author's honor or reputation, and license their new adaptations or creations under identical terms (CC BY-NC-SA).
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs (CC BY-NC-ND): for non-commercial purposes, lets others distribute and copy the article, and to include in a collective work (such as an anthology), as long as they credit the author(s) and provided they do not alter or modify the article.
To provide Open Access, this journal has a publication fee which needs to be met by the authors or their research funders for each article published Open Access.Language (usage and editing services)
Your publication choice will have no effect on the peer review process or acceptance of submitted articles.
The publication fee for this journal is $2400, excluding taxes. Learn more about Elsevier's pricing policy: http://www.elsevier.com/openaccesspricing.
Please write your text in good English (American or British usage is accepted, but not a mixture of these). Authors who feel their English language manuscript may require editing to eliminate possible grammatical or spelling errors and to conform to correct scientific English may wish to use the English Language Editing service available from Elsevier's WebShop (http://webshop.elsevier.com/languageediting/) or visit our customer support site (http://support.elsevier.com) for more information.
SubmissionSpecial Issues and Special Section Submissions.
ECRA uses electronic submissions only as a means for reviewing new and revised papers. All manuscripts and any supplementary material should be submitted via the journal's online submission and peer-review system, called the Elsevier Editorial System (EES) at the following external link http://www.ees.elsevier.com/ecra. Thereafter, please follow the instructions given on this website to submit your paper.
If you are submitting a paper to a Special Section or Special Issue of ECRA, then follow these instructions:
1. Author registers in EES, and follows the submission instructions given on the site.
2. Select 'Submit Manuscript' from the 'Main Menu.'
3. When choosing 'Article Type' please select the title of the Special Section or Special Issue to which you wish to submit.
Then follow the steps as laid out in EES. Your manuscript will be submitted to the Editorial Office, which then assigns it to the Guest Editor in charge of that specific Special Section or Special Issue.Referees
Please submit, with the manuscript, the names, addresses and e-mail addresses of three potential referees. Note that the editor retains the sole right to decide whether or not the suggested reviewers are used. Use of wordprocessing software
It is important that the file be saved in the native format of the wordprocessor used. The text should be in single-column format. Keep the layout of the text as simple as possible. Most formatting codes will be removed and replaced on processing the article. In particular, do not use the wordprocessor's options to justify text or to hyphenate words. However, do use bold face, italics, subscripts, superscripts etc. If possible, do not embed "graphically designed" equations or tables, but prepare these using the wordprocessor's facility. When preparing tables, if you are using a table grid, use only one grid for each individual table and not a grid for each row. If no grid is used, use tabs, not spaces, to align columns. The electronic text should be prepared in a way very similar to that of conventional manuscripts (see also the Guide to Publishing with Elsevier: http://www.elsevier.com/guidepublication. See also the section on Electronic illustrations. To avoid unnecessary errors you are strongly advised to use the "spell-check" and "grammar-check" functions of your wordprocessor.LaTeX
If the LaTeX file is suitable, proofs will be produced without rekeying the text. The article should preferably be written using Elsevier's document class 'elsarticle', or alternatively any of the other recognized classes and formats supported in Elsevier's electronic submissions system, for further information see http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/authorsview.authors/latex-ees-supported.
The Elsevier 'elsarticle' LaTeX style file package (including detailed instructions for LaTeX preparation) can be obtained from the Quickguide: http://www.elsevier.com/latex. It consists of the file: elsarticle.cls, complete user documentation for the class file, bibliographic style files in various styles, and template files for a quick start. For information about reference management please go to the document at http://cdn.elsevier.com/assets/pdf_file/0011/109388/elsdoc.pdf and click on the section 'bibliography'.
Manuscripts submitted to ECRA should be prepared for electronic submission to the EES website using single-column, double-spaced 11 or 12 point fonts, with 1 inch or 2.5 centimeter margins. Authors should avoid double justification. Please do not use a constant right-hand margin, since it diminishes readability for the reviewers. Also, ensure that each new paragraph is clearly indicated by indenting the first line. Also to enhance readability, authors should embed tables and figures in the manuscript in places that are near to the text that refers to them. Number all pages consecutively. Consult a recent issue of the journal to become familiar with layout and other formatting conventions. If you require a sample issue, please click on the 'Free Sample Issue' link under the 'For Readers' menu on the right hand side of this page. Here are some additional requirements related to formatting:
Title Page. Authors should include a Title Page as the first page of their submission, containing the article title, author(s) names and affiliations, an abstract not exceeding 150 words, and a list of 5 to 10 keywords that best describe the overall contents of the article for indexing and retrieval purposes. The title page should also contain related footnotes and acknowledgments that pertain to the paper and the authors.Corresponding Author. Clearly indicate who will handle correspondence at all stages of refereeing and publication, including post-publication correspondence. Ensure that telephone and fax numbers with country and area code are provided, in addition to the e-mail address and the complete postal address.
A Graphical abstract is optional and should summarize the contents of the article in a concise, pictorial form designed to capture the attention of a wide readership online. Authors must provide images that clearly represent the work described in the article. Graphical abstracts should be submitted as a separate file in the online submission system. Image size: Please provide an image with a minimum of 531 × 1328 pixels (h × w) or proportionally more. The image should be readable at a size of 5 × 13 cm using a regular screen resolution of 96 dpi. Preferred file types: TIFF, EPS, PDF or MS Office files. See http://www.elsevier.com/graphicalabstracts for examples.
Authors can make use of Elsevier's Illustration and Enhancement service to ensure the best presentation of their images also in accordance with all technical requirements: Illustration Service.
Highlights are mandatory for this journal. They consist of a short collection of bullet points that convey the core findings of the article and should be submitted in a separate file in the online submission system. Please use 'Highlights' in the file name and include 3 to 5 bullet points (maximum 85 characters, including spaces, per bullet point). See http://www.elsevier.com/highlights for examples. Electronic Artwork
•Make sure you use uniform lettering and sizing of your original artwork.A detailed guide on electronic artwork is available on our website: http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions.
•Save text in illustrations as "graphics" or enclose the font.
•Only use the following fonts in your illustrations: Arial, Courier, Helvetica, Times, •Number the illustrations according to their sequence in the text.
•Use a logical naming convention for your artwork files, if you include separate ones.
•Provide captions to illustrations.
•Produce images near to the desired size of the printed version.
You are urged to visit this site; some excerpts from the detailed information are given here.
FormatsPlease do not:
Regardless of the application used, when your electronic artwork is finalised after your paper has been accepted, please "save as" or convert the images to one of the following formats (note the resolution requirements for line drawings, halftones, and line/halftone combinations given below):
EPS: Vector drawings. Embed the font or save the text as 'graphics'.
TIFF: color or grayscale photographs (halftones): always use a minimum of 300 dpi.
TIFF: Bitmapped line drawings: use a minimum of 1000 dpi.
TIFF: Combinations bitmapped line/half-tone (color or grayscale): a minimum of 500 dpi is required.
DOC, DOCX, XLS or PPT: If your electronic artwork is created in any of these Microsoft Office applications please supply 'as is'.
•Supply files that are optimised for screen use (like GIF, BMP, PICT, WPG); the resolution is too low;
•Supply files that are too low in resolution;
•Submit graphics that are disproportionately large for the content.
Figures, Tables and IllustrationsColor artwork
Provide all figures, tables and illustrations in high-quality format suitable for reproduction, which may include reduction. These should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they are referred to in the main body of the text. Mark all of these with a table or figure number and an explanatory caption or title. For detailed guidelines on electronic figures, please refer to the 'Artwork Instructions' at http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions
Please make sure that artwork files are in an acceptable format (TIFF (or JPEG), EPS (or PDF), or MS Office files) and with the correct resolution. If, together with your accepted article, you submit usable color figures then Elsevier will ensure, at no additional charge, that these figures will appear in color on the Web (e.g., ScienceDirect and other sites) regardless of whether or not these illustrations are reproduced in color in the printed version. For color reproduction in print, you will receive information regarding the costs from Elsevier after receipt of your accepted article. Please indicate your preference for color: in print or on the Web only. For further information on the preparation of electronic artwork, please see http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions.
Please note: Because of technical complications which can arise by converting color figures to 'gray scale' (for the printed version should you not opt for color in print) please submit in addition usable black and white versions of all the color illustrations.
Reference linksReference management software
Increased discoverability of research and high quality peer review are ensured by online links to the sources cited. In order to allow us to create links to abstracting and indexing services, such as Scopus, CrossRef and PubMed, please ensure that data provided in the references are correct. Please note that incorrect surnames, journal/book titles, publication year and pagination may prevent link creation. When copying references, please be careful as they may already contain errors. Use of the DOI is encouraged.
This journal has standard templates available in key reference management packages EndNote (http://www.endnote.com/support/enstyles.asp) and Reference Manager (http://refman.com/support/rmstyles.asp). Using plug-ins to wordprocessing packages, authors only need to select the appropriate journal template when preparing their article and the list of references and citations to these will be formatted according to the journal style which is described below.
Reference formattingReference style
There are no strict requirements on reference formatting at submission. References can be in any style or format as long as the style is consistent. Where applicable, author(s) name(s), journal title/book title, chapter title/article title, year of publication, volume number/book chapter and the pagination must be present. Use of DOI is highly encouraged. The reference style used by the journal will be applied to the accepted article by Elsevier at the proof stage. Note that missing data will be highlighted at proof stage for the author to correct. If you do wish to format the references yourself they should be arranged according to the following examples:
Text: All citations in the text should refer to:
1. Single author: the author's name (without initials, unless there is ambiguity) and the year of publication;
2. Two authors: both authors' names and the year of publication;
3. Three or more authors: first author's name followed by 'et al.' and the year of publication.
Citations may be made directly (or parenthetically). Groups of references should be listed first alphabetically, then chronologically.
Examples: 'as demonstrated (Allan, 2000a, 2000b, 1999; Allan and Jones, 1999). Kramer et al. (2010) have recently shown ....'
List: References should be arranged first alphabetically and then further sorted chronologically if necessary. More than one reference from the same author(s) in the same year must be identified by the letters 'a', 'b', 'c', etc., placed after the year of publication.
Reference to a journal publication:
Van der Geer, J., Hanraads, J.A.J., Lupton, R.A., 2010. The art of writing a scientific article. J. Sci. Commun. 163, 51–59.
Reference to a book:
Strunk Jr., W., White, E.B., 2000. The Elements of Style, fourth ed. Longman, New York.
Reference to a chapter in an edited book:
Mettam, G.R., Adams, L.B., 2009. How to prepare an electronic version of your article, in: Jones, B.S., Smith , R.Z. (Eds.), Introduction to the Electronic Age. E-Publishing Inc., New York, pp. 281–304.
Published Materials on the Internet and Foreign Language Sources.
Provide as complete information as possible, although pages may not be available. Indicate the URL where the materials can be found, and indicate the last data the materials were accessed.
Please click here for examples.
The journal encourages authors to create an AudioSlides presentation with their published article. AudioSlides are brief, webinar-style presentations that are shown next to the online article on ScienceDirect. This gives authors the opportunity to summarize their research in their own words and to help readers understand what the paper is about. More information and examples are available at http://www.elsevier.com/audioslides. Authors of this journal will automatically receive an invitation e-mail to create an AudioSlides presentation after acceptance of their paper.
The following list will be useful during the final checking of an article prior to sending it to the journal for review. Please consult this Guide for Authors for further details of any item.
Ensure that the following items are present:
One author has been designated as the corresponding author with contact details:
• E-mail address
• Full postal address
• Phone numbers
All necessary files have been uploaded, and contain:
• All figure captions
• All tables (including title, description, footnotes)
• Manuscript has been 'spell-checked' and 'grammar-checked'
• References are in the correct format for this journal
• All references mentioned in the Reference list are cited in the text, and vice versa
• Permission has been obtained for use of copyrighted material from other sources (including the Web)
• Color figures are clearly marked as being intended for color reproduction on the Web (free of charge) and in print, or to be reproduced in color on the Web (free of charge) and in black-and-white in print
• If only color on the Web is required, black-and-white versions of the figures are also supplied for printing purposes
For any further information please visit our customer support site at http://support.elsevier.com. Use of the Digital Object Identifier
The Digital Object Identifier (DOI) may be used to cite and link to electronic documents. The DOI consists of a unique alpha-numeric character string which is assigned to a document by the publisher upon the initial electronic publication. The assigned DOI never changes. Therefore, it is an ideal medium for citing a document, particularly 'Articles in press' because they have not yet received their full bibliographic information. Example of a correctly given DOI (in URL format; here an article in the journal Physics Letters B):
When you use a DOI to create links to documents on the web, the DOIs are guaranteed never to change.
Uncorrected Proofs are not to be regarded as 'drafts,' and authors should not view them as providing an opportunity to make major content changes. Only minor copy-editing corrections are permitted. . No changes in, or additions to the accepted and subsequently edited manuscript will be allowed at the end of this stage. So it is important to ensure that all changes to the Uncorrected Proof are indicated in one communication with the Elsevier Production staff. Subsequent corrections will not be possible. Prior to the Uncorrected Proof stage, an ECRA Co-Editor may request that a paper should be edited for English. Elsevier's Language Editing Service will handle this.
Online proof correctionOffprints
Corresponding authors will receive an e-mail with a link to our ProofCentral system, allowing annotation and correction of proofs online. The environment is similar to MS Word: in addition to editing text, you can also comment on figures/tables and answer questions from the Copy Editor. Web-based proofing provides a faster and less error-prone process by allowing you to directly type your corrections, eliminating the potential introduction of errors.
If preferred, you can still choose to annotate and upload your edits on the PDF version. All instructions for proofing will be given in the e-mail we send to authors, including alternative methods to the online version and PDF.
We will do everything possible to get your article published quickly and accurately - please upload all of your corrections within 48 hours. It is important to ensure that all corrections are sent back to us in one communication. Please check carefully before replying, as inclusion of any subsequent corrections cannot be guaranteed. Proofreading is solely your responsibility. Note that Elsevier may proceed with the publication of your article if no response is received.
The corresponding author, at no cost, will be provided with a PDF file of the article via e-mail (the PDF file is a watermarked version of the published article and includes a cover sheet with the journal cover image and a disclaimer outlining the terms and conditions of use). For an extra charge, paper offprints can be ordered via the offprint order form which is sent once the article is accepted for publication. Both corresponding and co-authors may order offprints at any time via Elsevier's WebShop (http://webshop.elsevier.com/myarticleservices/offprints). Authors requiring printed copies of multiple articles may use Elsevier WebShop's 'Create Your Own Book' service to collate multiple articles within a single cover (http://webshop.elsevier.com/myarticleservices/offprints/myarticlesservices/booklets).
For inquiries relating to the submission of articles (including electronic submission) please visit this journal's homepage. For detailed instructions on the preparation of electronic artwork, please visit http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions. Contact details for questions arising after acceptance of an article, especially those relating to proofs, will be provided by the publisher. You can track accepted articles at http://www.elsevier.com/trackarticle. You can also check our Author FAQs at http://www.elsevier.com/authorFAQ and/or contact Customer Support via http://support.elsevier.com.