Guide for Authors

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2020 will mark the 60th anniversary of Soils and Foundations, of which the first issue (Volume 1, 1) came out in June 1960. Today, as a full-fledged international journal, Soils and Foundations publishes original "technical papers", "technical reports" and "technical notes" in English in the fields of soil and rock mechanics, geotechnical engineering, and environmental geotechnics, as well as "Geo-disaster Report" on invitation from the Editor. Theoretical and practical contributions to the above fields are equally welcome, and particular encouragement is given to case studies including original descriptions and to interdisciplinary work with applications in geotechnical engineering. "Discussions" of articles published are also gladly received in order to provide an avenue for feedback and exchanges of opinions among peers. As a source of latest expertise on specified topics, one issue a year out of six, on average, is allocated to presenting selected papers from international symposia held in Japan and overseas.

Ethics in publishing

Please see our information pages on Ethics in publishing and Ethical guidelines for journal publication.

Declaration of competing interest

All authors must disclose any financial and personal relationships with other people or organizations that could inappropriately influence (bias) their work. Examples of potential conflicts of interest include employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, paid expert testimony, patent applications/registrations, and grants or other funding. Authors should complete the declaration of competing interest statement using this template and upload to the submission system at the Attach/Upload Files step. Note: Please do not convert the .docx template to another file type. Author signatures are not required. If there are no interests to declare, please choose the first option in the template. This statement will be published within the article if accepted. More information.

Submission declaration and verification

Submission of an article implies that the work described has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract, a published lecture or academic thesis, see 'Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication' for more information), 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 Crossref Similarity Check.

Please note that preprints can be shared anywhere at any time, in line with Elsevier's sharing policy. Sharing your preprints e.g. on a preprint server will not count as prior publication (see 'Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication' for more information).

Use of inclusive language

Inclusive language acknowledges diversity, conveys respect to all people, is sensitive to differences, and promotes equal opportunities. Content should make no assumptions about the beliefs or commitments of any reader; contain nothing which might imply that one individual is superior to another on the grounds of age, gender, race, ethnicity, culture, sexual orientation, disability or health condition; and use inclusive language throughout. Authors should ensure that writing is free from bias, stereotypes, slang, reference to dominant culture and/or cultural assumptions. We advise to seek gender neutrality by using plural nouns ("clinicians, patients/clients") as default/wherever possible to avoid using "he, she," or "he/she." We recommend avoiding the use of descriptors that refer to personal attributes such as age, gender, race, ethnicity, culture, sexual orientation, disability or health condition unless they are relevant and valid. These guidelines are meant as a point of reference to help identify appropriate language but are by no means exhaustive or definitive.

Changes to authorship

Authors are expected to consider carefully the list and order of authors before submitting their manuscript and provide the definitive list of authors at the time of the original submission. Any addition, deletion or rearrangement of author names in the authorship list should be made only before the manuscript has been accepted and only if approved by the journal Editor. To request such a change, the Editor must receive the following from the corresponding author: (a) the reason for the change in author list and (b) written confirmation (e-mail, 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.
Only in exceptional circumstances will the Editor consider the addition, deletion or rearrangement of authors after the manuscript has been accepted. While the Editor considers the request, publication of the manuscript will be suspended. If the manuscript has already been published in an online issue, any requests approved by the Editor will result in a corrigendum.


Policy regarding transfer of copyright
Of the property rights for the works published in Soils and Foundations, the rights pertaining to the editing of the journal issue concerned will belong to The Japanese Geotechnical Society, whereas the rights relating to individual authorship and authorial status will belong to the author or authors. In cases in which the Society receives a request from a third party for permission to use the property rights in connection with a reproduction of contents (including in the electronic media), or in cases in which the Society itself makes use of the rights outside of the publication of Soils and Foundations, the author or authors will grant the Society the power to exercise the rights concerned. Further, if, in the course of such a transaction, the Society receives fees or other recompenses for the granting of the use of the property rights, the author or authors will consent to these being appropriated into the Society's operating account. However, this will not impede the author.

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Find out how you can share your research published in Elsevier journals.


Types of Paper

Authors must indicate which of the following 5 categories they wish their manuscripts to be classified under:

(1) Technical Paper
• Must be a complete paper; papers in a series, such as Part I and Part II, are not acceptable.
• Must be a report of independent original and innovatory research related to geotechnology.

(2) Technical Report
• A report of a design, construction, in-situ measurement etc.
• An operational report of results from in-situ surveying, design, construction work, site measurement, etc., conducive in content to the development of geotechnology.

(3) Technical Note
• A short paper etc.
• A brief report of main points for a new method of in-situ surveying, laboratory experimentation, analysis, or computation.
• A brief report of new on-site information conducive to the development of geotechnology.
• A brief report of a new research, survey, design, construction work, etc. conducive in content to the development of a future technical paper or report.
• Supplementary numerical tables or figures useful for the understanding of a past technical paper or report.

(4) Discussion
• Questions or opinions relating to technical papers, reports and notes, committee reports or current situation reports published in the journal within the previous 7 months; on request, however, this period may be extended to 8 months.

(5) Geo-disaster Report
•A quick reconnaissance report of major geo-disasters induced by earthquake, heavy rainfall, etc.
•The only invited authors from Editorial Committee can submit the manuscript.
•Geo-disaster Report is published as open access.

(6) Other categories: Society committee report, current situation report, state-of-the-art report. The author of a state-of-the-art report must have consulted the Editorial Committee before submitting the manuscript.

Submission Checklist

I declare that this manuscript has been submitted only to Soils and Foundations and is not previously published, in press, or in process of submission elsewhere Please indicate if the manuscript contents have a previous history of presentation without a review process, giving details (e.g., "contents presented at the International Conference"). I have read and understood the journal's policy concerning transfer of copyright. I have read and understood the journal's policy concerning charges for extra pages and color printing. If you are resubmitting a manuscript which has been previously rejected, please enter the paper number and title that were used in the rejected paper. How many figures are there in the manuscript? How many tables are there in the manuscript? How many photographs are there in the manuscript? How many words are there in the text of the manuscript? In the event of the work being published, how many offprints will you require?

Ensure that the following items are present:


    At least one of the authors of the manuscript must be a member of The Japanese Geotechnical Society, or of The International Geotechnical Society or one of its member societies. One author has been designated as the corresponding author with contact details:
    o E-mail address
    o Full postal address
  • All necessary files have been uploaded:


  • Include keywords
  • All figures (include relevant captions)
  • All tables (including titles, description, footnotes)
  • Ensure all figure and table citations in the text match the files provided
  • Indicate clearly if color should be used for any figures in print
    Graphical Abstracts / Highlights files (where applicable)
    Supplemental files (where applicable)

Further considerations

  • Manuscript has been 'spell checked' and 'grammar checked'
  • 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 Internet)
  • A competing interests statement is provided, even if the authors have no competing interests to declare
  • Journal policies detailed in this guide have been reviewed
  • Referee suggestions and contact details provided, based on journal requirements
  • For the manuscript of a technical paper, technical report or technical note, the following points (1) to (3) must be carefully adhered to.
    1. The content must not have been previously published in a widely read technical journal.
    2. The manuscript must not be multiply submitted.
      A manuscript will be considered as "multiply submitted" if it has elsewhere been submitted for publication, or actually published, in a collection of papers authorized by an academic society or association at the end of a peer review, or if a decision has been made for its publication in this way. No distinction will be made for the publication language. Papers which have been published in such settings as conference or society proceedings, symposium reports, university or research center journals, or company-internal reports will be regarded as predominantly having the character of brief notes or materials (i.e., papers which have not undergone a peer review). However, to avoid being rejected as a double submission, the contents of such a paper will need to have been further developed and amplified.
    3. The content has to stand independently, not as part of a series.

For further information, visit our Support Center.

Open access

Please visit our Open Access page for more information.


Submission to this journal proceeds totally online. Use the following guidelines to prepare your article. Via the homepage of this journal ( you will be guided stepwise through the creation and uploading of the various files. The system automatically converts source files to a single Adobe Acrobat PDF version of the article, which is used in the peer-review process. Please note that even though manuscript source files are converted to PDF at submission for the review process, these source files are needed for further processing after acceptance. All correspondence, including notification of the Editor's decision and requests for revision, takes place by e-mail and via the author's homepage, removing the need for a hard-copy paper trail. If you are unable to provide an electronic version, please contact the editorial office prior to submission e-mail to the society.

Additional Information

  1. The manuscript must employ symbols and terminology which are widely accepted in the current soil mechanics/geotechnical engineering literature as recommended by the International Society for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering.
  2. SI units should be used as a general rule. If other conventions are followed, they must be accompanied by SI unit equivalents in parentheses.
  3. Manuscripts must be in English, and must be type-written, double spaced, a single column, on A4-size paper (21.5 cm by 28 cm). A typed page can be considered to contain around 250 words, which is roughly equivalent to one third of a printed page.
  4. Manuscripts except for Discussion must be accompanied by an abstract of approximately 200 words, 5 to 10 key words.
  5. A list of references must be supplied, arranged in alphabetical order based on the first author's last name. In the text, the authors' last names and the year of publication must be given in parentheses.
  6. All figures and photographs must be of sufficiently high quality for printing ( see Artwork and media instruction). Note that color figures or photographs submitted with a manuscript will also appear in color on the web with no charge. However, there will be a charge for color reproductions of figures or photographs in print; if preferred, such figures or photographs can be reproduced without color in print with no charge.
  7. Technical Papers, Technical Reports, Geo-disaster Reports, and Discussions have a maximum length of 8,000 words (including article title, abstract and reference list.) Technical Notes have a word count limit of 4,000. Where the number of words exceeds the maximum, the author(s) will be required to reduce the length to the permitted maximum. In the case of a state-of-the-art report, the Editorial Committee will decide the word count limit and other conditions separately.
    For the manuscripts submitted by June 30, 2019, the following conditions and extra page charge are applied:

    Category Standard length Max. extra pages Cost per extra page
    Technical Paper 12 or less 8 30,000 yen
    Technical Report 12 or less 8 30,000 yen
    Technical Note 6 or less 4 30,000 yen
    Discussion 3 or less no limit None
    Geo-disaster Report 12 or less 8 None

  8. The text, tables, figures and photographs for a manuscript must be submitted electronically to the following site: Note that a list of tables, figures and photographs must be supplied, and write the caption in "Description" when they are separately submitted.

Reference management software
Most Elsevier journals have their reference template available in many of the most popular reference management software products. These include all products that support Citation Style Language styles, such as Mendeley. Using citation plug-ins from these products, authors only need to select the appropriate journal template when preparing their article, after which citations and bibliographies will be automatically formatted in the journal's style. If no template is yet available for this journal, please follow the format of the sample references and citations as shown in this Guide. If you use reference management software, please ensure that you remove all field codes before submitting the electronic manuscript. More information on how to remove field codes from different reference management software.

Peer Review

This journal operates a single blind review process. All contributions will be initially assessed by the editor for suitability for the journal. Papers deemed suitable are then typically sent to a minimum of two independent expert reviewers to assess the scientific quality of the paper. The Editor is responsible for the final decision regarding acceptance or rejection of articles. The Editor's decision is final. More information on types of peer review.

All manuscripts will be initially assessed by the editor for suitability for the journal. If the manuscript corresponds to the following issues, it will be returned to the authors without external review.

  • The topic is outside of the journal scope.
  • The language is not reasonable.
  • The manuscript contains an unacceptable level of overlap with other published papers.
  • The technical contents of the manuscript lack clearly in a basic requirement (insufficient explanation on purpose, methodology, data reliability, literature review, novelty comparing to previous work, etc. ).

The number of reviewers
Reviews will be requested from specialists in each field, as follows:

  • Technical Paper: 2 reviewers
  • Technical Report: 2 reviewers
  • Technical Note: 2 reviewers
  • Discussion: 1 reviewer
  • Geo-disaster Report: No external review. Only editorial board's review.

Evaluation levels
After considering the review results, the Editorial Committee will assign one of the following evaluations:

  • (A-1) Acceptance in the form submitted
  • (A-2) Acceptance with optional suggestions for revision
  • (B) Reassessment after extensive revisions
  • (C-1) Rejection with encouragement to re-submit
  • Rejection

(C-1) means that the manuscript cannot be accepted in the form submitted, but if (and only on condition that) it is resubmitted with corrections or additions that satisfy the objections pointed out by the Editorial Committee, it will be reviewed again as a fresh submission.

In the cases of (A-2), (B), if a manuscript returned to the sender for revision by the Editorial Committee does not arrive back with revisions completed within the space of three months, it will be assumed that the submission for publication has been withdrawn.

Online proof correction

To ensure a fast publication process of the article, we kindly ask authors to provide us with their proof corrections within two days. Corresponding authors will receive an e-mail with a link to our online proofing 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 use this proof only for checking the typesetting, editing, completeness and correctness of the text, tables and figures. Significant changes to the article as accepted for publication will only be considered at this stage with permission from the Editor. 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.


Authors requiring separate printings of their papers (that is, in the form of offprints) may order them in unit sets of 50. A PDF file of the paper in its ready-to-print state will be provided free of charge in any case. Charges for separate printings will vary depending on the final number of pages etc., so that a single standard charge cannot be quoted.

Elsevier Researcher Academy

Researcher Academy is a free e-learning platform designed to support early and mid-career researchers throughout their research journey. The "Learn" environment at Researcher Academy offers several interactive modules, webinars, downloadable guides and resources to guide you through the process of writing for research and going through peer review. Feel free to use these free resources to improve your submission and navigate the publication process with ease.

Author inquiries

Inquiries should be addressed to:

4-38-2, Sengoku, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 112-0011, JAPAN (Address changed from March 22, 2004)
TEL: +81-3-3946-8677
FAX: +81-3-3946-8678