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Publish with us

Finding the best journal for a paper

22 May 2013

By Elizabeth Ash

Researcher with laptop at desk and writing on pad

New tool helps authors identify the best journal for their paper

For authors, getting their research paper published can be a challenge and it is even more challenging when their paper is rejected by a journal because it is out of scope. It can often add months to the publication process slowing career progress. We know that nearly one third of the visitors to Elsevier’s Authors’ Home are trying to choose a journal for their paper.

For Editors, dealing with out of scope papers can substantially add to their workload.

In a bid to help authors we have launched a new Journal Finder tool, accessible from 'Publish with Elsevier' which has just gone live in BETA version. The tool is designed to:

  • Help less experienced authors select suitable journals for their papers

  • Enable authors working across multidisciplinary fields to identify possible journals

  • Highlight journals that offer open access options, and provide information on publication speeds and impact factors

The Journal Finder tool as envisioned by Elsevier will provide substantive data and more specific information... thereby aiding both the faculty members and the librarians.

—Sandra Yee, Dean, University Library System, Wayne State University, US

How does the tool work?

Authors enter their paper title, abstract or keywords and the tool creates a list of Elsevier journals that match the topic of their article. They can then order the results based on their priorities, such as highest impact factor or shortest editorial time. The selection contains links to each journal’s homepage and Elsevier Editorial Submission (EES) page.

Journal finder tool screenshot

Journal finder tool.

Listening and responding to authors

We listen carefully to authors and receive feedback from more than 60,000 authors each year. In 2012, we launched the Elsevier Mobile Application Competition, which asked early-career researchers to submit their ideas for journal-based mobile applications. The competition received an overwhelming response, with 3,775 ideas submitted.

By a happy coincidence, the winning idea — a “Scope-finder” that would find the best fitting journal for a paper — had already been identified as a priority for Elsevier and was incorporated into the development of the Journal Finder tool.

The results matched precisely with my own judgement.

Dr Adrie J J Bos’, co-Editor-in-Chief of Radiation Measurements

Your feedback can help us ensure the tool continues to develop to meet the needs of authors and Editors. Please take a few moments to try it out on the Authors’ Home section of then email your thoughts to Researcher Supportopens in new tab/window referencing the subject Elsevier Journal Finder (BETA) User Feedback.


Elizabeth Ash


Elizabeth Ash

Project Coordinator