Special Issue Guidelines

A special issue, which is organized and led by the recognized subject expert(s), is a collection of articles focusing on a specific area of research. LIDSEN journals regularly recruit Guest Editors to edit special issues, aiming to attract high-quality articles in areas of current interest, emerging areas, or more in-depth research in the existing areas. As a Guest Editor, you will curate Special Issues around a specific topic, working at the cutting edge of your field. This guide outlines the roles and responsibilities of guest editors and the support that LIDSEN offers.

Submission and Approval of a Special Issue Proposal

You may be able to guest edit a special issue in two ways: (1) A member of the Editorial Board (including the Editor-in-Chief), or the Journal Editorial Office contacts you and invites you to serve as a guest editor for a special issue on a specific topic, or (2) You submit a special issue proposal directly to the Editorial Office. If you consider submitting a special issue proposal, you may find the following checklist helpful.

Checklist for the Special Issue Proposal:

  • The Journal for which you plan to submit your proposal.
  • Title of the Proposed Special Issue: The special issue’s topic should be within the aims and scope of the journal.
  • Submission Deadline: Given the time potential authors may spend preparing their articles, we suggest that special issues open for submissions for at least seven months. The Editorial Office will assist in the scheduling of the Special Issue once the proposal is approved.
  • List of Guest Editor(s): In this section, personal information of the guest editor(s) should be included along with a brief explanation of why they are qualified to edit the special issue on the proposed topic. Personal information: name, affiliation, e-mail address, research interests, homepage (if any). If multiple guest editors are involved, please indicate the order of the guest editors and identify individual responsibilities and work distribution as a team.
  • Summary and Keywords of the Special Issue: Please prepare a short introduction (about 100-200 words) that indicates the topic scope and significance of the special issue, and provide some keywords (about 3-10 keywords) to specify its topic.
  • A List of Potential Contributors (if any): In this section, please include the names, emails, and affiliations of the potential contributors and the tentative title (optionally) of the planned paper.
  • Competing Interests: Statements should be provided by the guest editors of the special issue for any conflicts of interest (real, potential, or perceived) related to the topic of the research (e.g., existing patents or ongoing patent applications, institution or company non-disclosure agreements, or ongoing collaborations or other connections with invited authors) as well as any other relevant conflicts of interest.
  • Experiences in editing special issues or in reviewing scholarly articles.

Proposals for special issues should be sent to the journal's Editorial Office. The journal’s Editorial Team and the Editor-in-Chief will oversee the guest editor's appointment and the special issue to ensure that the special issue and its content fall within the scope of the journal and meet relevant quality requirements.

Guidelines for Guest Editor

Responsibilities of Guest Editor

Special Issue Launch: Preparing the special issue information, including the title, summary, and keywords, to introduce the special issue.

Call for Papers: The Guest Editor may invite potential authors they deem appropriate. The Editorial Office can provide solicitation support by either providing the guest editors with a list of potential authors or sending invitations to potential authors on behalf of the Guest Editor.

Promoting Special Issue: The Guest Editor may promote special issues through email signatures, social media, or academic events (if any). The Editorial Office can provide support by hosting the Call for Papers on the journal homepage and promoting via conference/social media/blogs to attract more authors.

Manuscript Processing: Guest Editors will pre-check articles to ensure they fit the scope of the special issue and the journal, and meet the ethical and quality requirements for sending for peer review. The journal’s in-house editors will manage the peer review process and select reviewers. Guest Editors may be asked to provide comments where reviews are divergent or where particular concerns arise for which the journal would like their input. The guest editors will make recommendations on articles based on the collected review reports, but the final decision on all manuscripts will be made by the Editor-in-Chief. We believe this collaboration can ensure the integrity of peer review, and the quality of the Special Issue. For more details, please visit the following section Editorial Process for Special Issue Articles.

Ethical Guidelines for the Guest Editor

LIDSEN is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). We strictly adhere to the code of publication ethics set forth by COPE and deal with suspected ethical issues in accordance with its Core Practices.

Confidentiality: Protect the confidentiality of authors’ material and remind reviewers to do so as well. Single-blinded peer review is adopted in our editorial process so the identity of reviewers is not disclosed to authors unless reviewers wish to disclose their names.

Competing Interests: Authors, peer reviewers, and editors should disclose the potential competing interests when fulfilling their roles in the process of article review and publication. Where a conflict with the content or authors of a manuscript exists, reviewing or making decisions on the manuscript should be avoided and the journal will seek alternative reviewers or editors.

Citation Policy: Reviewers and editors are welcome to guide authors in expanding their literature review, but this should not be done only for the purpose of increasing citations to their own or colleagues' publications or to journals they are associated with.

Submission from Guest Editor: Special issues may publish articles from guest editors, but such submissions should be restricted to ensure the diversity of authors in the field. Please be aware that such submissions will be handled independently of the guest editors by a member of the journal’s Editorial Board.

Guest editors should realize that special issues are subject to the same ethical guidelines as regular issues of the journal. Please read the detailed ethical guidelines here.

Editorial Process for Special Issue Articles

Submission and peer review of special issue articles should be managed using the LIDSEN Submission System. Manuscripts submitted to a special issue will be processed by guest editors acting as academic editors. Guest editors are required to declare any relevant conflicts of interest before processing an article. If a conflict of interest exists, the article will be handled by the Editor-in-Chief or an Editorial Board member with the appropriate research background independently of the Guest Editor.  

Articles submitted to a special issue will follow the same editorial process and quality control as the regular papers, including the same external peer review process. The journal’s in-house editors will manage the peer review process and select reviewers. Single-blinded peer review is adopted in our editorial process, and at least two independent review reports are collected for each article. Guest editors are responsible for pre-checking and making recommendations for the articles, for which they are expected to evaluate the following:


  • Whether the manuscript falls within the scope of the special issue and the journal;
  • Whether the information regarding authorship is reliable;
  • Whether presentation meets our selection standards;
  • Whether required information regarding research ethics is included in the manuscript;
  • Whether the manuscript potentially suffers plagiarism. The journal will conduct an assay using iThenticate to check the similarity of submissions against previously published works.

Editorial Recommendation

  • Whether the reviewers are qualified and suitable to review the manuscript;
  • Whether the reviews are thorough and comments are adequate;
  • Whether the authors have properly responded to reviewers’ comments;
  • Whether the manuscript now meets the standard for publication.

After the Guest Editor has made a recommendation (‘Accept’, ‘Minor Revision’, ‘Major Revision’, or ‘Reject’) based on the review comments and his/her own evaluation, the Editor-in-Chief will make the final decision on the article. If the Editor-in-Chief has any reasonable concerns or questions at this stage, the manuscript may undergo further review or revision to address remaining issues, or even be rejected.

Upon acceptance, the article will be immediately published in a regular issue of the journal and simultaneously listed on the special issue website, with a label that the article belongs to the Special Issue. The Editorial Office will be responsible for typesetting and language editing, and then return to the authors for proofreading before publication. Authors from non-native English-speaking countries will benefit from the FREE Language Polishing Service. LIDSEN distributes articles under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) License in fully open access. Authors own the copyright to the article, and the article can be free to access, distribute, and reuse provided that the original work is correctly cited.