Article Transfer Service

Helping you find the right home for your research

JET infographic August 2019

Submitting your manuscript for publication is a critical point in the research cycle, and finding the right home for your work can be challenging. It may be that your first choice of journal turns out not to be the right one, requiring you to look elsewhere to publish.

At Elsevier, we recognize this process isn’t always smooth, and we are committed to helping good research find the right home. A key way we do this is through our Article Transfer Service.

85% of authors using the Article Transfer Service were satisfied or very satisfied with their experience.*

The system is designed to help manuscripts find the right journal faster by supporting seamless transfer of rejected articles to more suitable journals.

The instructions for article transfer were very clear and easy to follow. The whole process became very easy as a result.

- An author

Why accept an article transfer?

You’ve submitted your manuscript and unfortunately received a rejection, either before or after peer review. But, the editor has suggested a more suitable journal. What does this offer mean for you and your manuscript?

75% of authors state the main benefit of the Article Transfer Service as “Saving time/effort of a new submission process”**

The process, step by step

  1. Click the agree to transfer link you receive by email to start the process;
  2. From the potential alternative journals suggested by the editor, select the journal of your choice, and your submission will be transferred automatically;
  3. Finalize your transfer submission (including any formatting changes, revised files, additional files such as a “response to reviewers”, as required) and approve the PDF.

Types of transfer

A. Transfer Pre-review and Transfer Post-review
This is the most common type of transfer and is offered if the original editor for your article believes an alternative journal is more appropriate. If you accept the offer to transfer, your article and any available referee comments will be sent to the receiving journal. The editors of the receiving journal will make their own assessment based on the materials they receive. There is no guarantee of acceptance and your manuscript may be further peer reviewed.

B. Transfer Recommended Accept
A transfer recommended accept is a provisional acceptance (sometimes with some minor conditions of revision) of your paper. This is offered when, after peer review in the original journal to which you submitted, the editor decides that your article is not suitable for publication in their journal but is acceptable for publication in another journal. If you accept the offer to transfer, your article and any available referee comments will be sent to the receiving journal. Provided you address any comments from the original editor(s)/referees, and follow the instructions given in the email offer, publication in the alternative journal is expected without further peer review.

Choosing a different journal

If you would prefer to submit to a different journal, you may simply decline the transfer offer and submit directly to your chosen journal.

Elsevier is helping to improve the manuscript submission and peer review processes

Elsevier is committed to developing fast, effective and truly innovative solutions to improve the overall manuscript submission and peer review process for all parties involved: authors, reviewers and editors.

The Article Transfer Service is one such solution, designed to make the editorial process smoother and more efficient. By creating families of linked journals within various academic fields, we facilitate seamless transfer of articles between journals. This enables editors to identify and suggest a more suitable home for a manuscript and means that authors don’t have to go through the process of manually resubmitting, saving time and effort. If the transfer takes place post-review, previous input from referees can travel with the manuscript, ensuring the contributions of reviewers are used to maximum effect, so all parties benefit from the insights already shared.

Useful information


*Scores taken from Elsevier’s Author Feedback Programme. Responses received during 2018 (N=6717), excludes those answering “don’t know/not applicable”.
**Scores taken from Elsevier’s Author Feedback Programme. Responses received between 10 Feb – 19 Mar, 2019 (N=826).