Information for Editors
MDPI is an academic open access publisher based in Basel, Switzerland, and was initially founded in 1996 to collect and preserve rare chemical research samples. To support the samples project, MDPI started the journal Molecules the same year. Since 1996, MDPI has grown into a publishing house with over 280 journals and with offices in Beijing and Wuhan (China), Barcelona (Spain), Belgrade (Serbia), Cluj (Romania), Manchester (UK) and Tokyo (Japan). MDPI is backed by more than 67,200 academic editors and scientists worldwide.
Open Access mean that readers can access published material for free, without paying a subscription charge. MDPI articles are freely available immediately after publication. This means that researchers, students, and interested lay people from anywhere in the world have rapid access to the latest research through MDPI journals. All MDPI content is distributed under a Creative Commons open access license.
We finance publication through article processing charges (APC), paid by authors and their institutions. APCs cover the cost of managing the peer review process, professional copy-editing, and promotion of published research MDPI has no other source of income.
For authors, open access means a potentially wider circle of readers for their research papers, with some research suggesting that open access papers are more highly cited.
At MDPI, we believe that open access offers value for money for researchers—our income per article is substantially lower than established subscription publishers. We offer a good deal for funding bodies—outcomes can be widely circulated and no barrier for reading offers transparency to those footing the bill. We also offer transparency to tax payers, who indirectly fund a great deal of research—through open access they have the opportunity to see the results of their contributions.
Journals Published by MDPI
More than 280 journal titles are currently published by MDPI and available online in open access format at www.mdpi.com. MDPI continuously launches new journals in response to academic developments, and to be able to serve additional research communities and their needs.
MDPI Editorial Offices
MDPI is headquartered in Basel, Switzerland. The in-house staff consists of Managing Editors, Assistant Editors, Production Editors, English Editors, Copyeditors, Data Specialists, Software Engineers and Administrative Specialists. Except for most English Editors, all are employed by MDPI and its subsidiaries and work at the MDPI offices. Our collaborating editors on our Editorial Boards are typically employed at academic institutions or corporate research facilities located all over the world. The contact with the in-house editorial staff is mainly by e-mail and telephone. The in-house editorial staff normally work for several journals related to their educational background. Assistant Editors process manuscripts through the peer-review and production procedures; Managing Editors have the editorial responsibility for the journals; Production Editors, English Editors, Copyeditors and Data Specialists are responsible for putting accepted content into a publishable format (full-text PDF, XML and HTML versions). Contact information can be found at www.mdpi.com/about/contact/.
Editorial Process, Peer-Review and Production
Articles submitted to MDPI journals are subject to strict peer-reviewing. In most journals, the process is single blind peer-review (the reviewers know the authors’ identities, but the authors do not know the reviewers’ identities). Some journals operate double blind peer-review (the reviewers do not know the authors’ identities until the paper has been published). The MDPI online submission system, Susy, incorporates online tools for manuscript submission, peer-reviewing and editorial decision making. Reviewers and external editors do not need to have an account with the MDPI submission system in order to finish the tasks assigned to them. Rather, the system will recognize the reviewers and external editors through one-time usable IDs found in the URLs. Editors-in-Chief and Guest Editors can view articles submitted to their journal or Special Issue via Susy at any time.
The Instructions for Authors page on the website of each MDPI journal guides authors through preparing and submitting their manuscripts.
Once a manuscript is submitted, the submission is received by the in-house Managing Editor, who will subsequently coordinate the whole editorial process for the manuscript: peer-review, decision making, possible author revisions, manuscript acceptance, copyediting, English editing, proofreading and final publication. An in-house Assistant Editor will be assigned to the submitted article and will send review invitations.
At least two reports per manuscript are collected for each manuscript—three if the first two differ substantially. Reviewers must hold a PhD, cannot have published with the authors in the past five years, and must have recent publications in the field of the submitted manuscript.
The Editor-in-Chief, Guest Editor, or a suitable Editorial Board member can make the final acceptance or rejection decision for a manuscript, usually after the author’s revisions. We typically allow no more than two rounds of major revisions.
After the acceptance of an article for publication, the in-house editorial staff organize the production of the paper, which entails copyediting, English editing and final production in preparation for publication on the journal website. All journals are structured in yearly volumes and either monthly or quarterly issues. Nevertheless, articles are published online immediately after their acceptance and production.
In many MDPI journals, Academic Editors who have made the acceptance decision for a manuscript, after full peer-review, have the option to include their name and role as the Academic Editor on the published manuscript. This is at the Academic Editor’s discretion. Guest Editors of Special Issues are required to have their name(s) included on manuscripts they have accepted for publication.
The Editor-in-Chief is the head of the journal and is mainly responsible for the scientific quality of the journal. Unlike other Publishers, MDPI does not need the Editor-in-Chief to be actively involved in the editorial process, i.e., the MDPI editorial team will take care of the majority of contact with authors and reviewers. The Editor-in-Chief is responsible for assisting the Editorial Office in the management of the journal, which entails:
- Scientific decisions about the journal's scope;
- Inviting distinguished scientists to join the Editorial Board;
- Suggesting topics for Special Issues;
- Assisting the Guest Editors in the setup of Special Issues;
- Overviewing the editorial process for individual manuscripts (mainly by making the final decision regarding whether or not a paper can be published after peer-review and revisions).
The Editor-in-Chief position is honorary. As a reward for their efforts, the Editor-in-Chief can publish one or two papers per year free of charge in any of MDPI’s open access journals. The initial term for the Editor-in-Chief position is two years and can be renewed.
Editorial Board Member Responsibilities
An Editorial Board Member will be asked to review one or two manuscripts per year and may help to edit a Special Issue on a topic related to his or her research interests. Additionally, the Editorial Board member will, from time to time, be approached for input or feedback regarding new regulations relating to the journal. Editorial Board members are also encouraged to help to promote the journal among their peers or at conferences. The communication with Editorial Board members is done primarily by email. The initial term for an Editorial Board membership is two years and can be renewed. An Editorial Board member may also step down from the position at any time if he or she feels overloaded by the requests from the journal’s Editorial Office.
Guest Editor Responsibility/Guest Editing a Special Issue
Special Issues enable collaboration with scholars all over the world. Special Issues are edited by a Guest Editor who invites colleagues from the same research field to contribute an article on a topic within their field of expertise. The following are the guidelines for the preparation and publication of a Special Issue.
1. Preparing a Proposal
Guest Editors should prepare a proposal for the Special Issue and submit this to the Editorial Office for their approval. The proposal should contain the following information:
- Tentative title for the Special Issue
- A description and 5-10 keywords for the Special Issue webpage
- Tentative time schedule
- Potential author list for the Special Issue
We encourage teams to include editors from multiple institutions and locations. We encourage diversity to reduce potential conflicts of interest, help the Special Issue to reach a wide audience, and encourage global collaboration on important topics.
2. Soliciting papers
Guest Editors are encouraged to promote their Special Issue through distributing the Call-for-Papers at conferences they attend, personally contacting associates working in the area to solicit submissions, and announcing it on their personal websites, etc. If the Special Issue is successful, with at least 10 accepted manuscripts after full peer review, we can make it into a printed book.
3. The peer-review process
3.1. The submission and peer review of Special Issue papers is managed exclusively in MDPI’s dedicated in-house system.
3.2. The Guest Editor usually makes decisions on the acceptance of manuscripts submitted to their Special Issue (depending on the journal’s policy—in some cases they may make a recommendation to the Editor-in-Chief).
3.3. Papers belonging to a Special Issue are published online in the journal immediately after acceptance and are collected together on the Special Issue webpage. This means that there is no delay for authors who submit their work: it will appear shortly after acceptance, even if other papers in the Special Issue are still being processed.
3.4. Once all manuscripts published, we ask the Guest Editor team to write an Editorial for the Special Issue.
3.5. Guest Editors should not hold conflicts of interest with authors whose work they are assessing, e.g., if they are from the same institution or collaborate closely. In this case, the Editor-in-Chief or a suitable Editorial Board member will make any final acceptance decisions for submitted papers. Guest Editors of Special Issues are required to have their name(s) and role included on manuscripts they have accepted for publication.
The final approval of any proposal will be decided by MDPI journal office and the journal’s Editorial Board. MDPI reserves the right not to proceed with any Special Issue at any time and for any reason and in its sole discretion.
Topic Editor Responsibility
Topics offer the opportunity to collaborate across disciplines around the world. Topics are edited by a team of Topic Editors, collaborating on the project with the responsibility to:
- Define the scope of the Topic to ensure its substantive correctness, and guide authors to submit manuscripts that fit appropriately within the scope of the presented topic.
- Promote the Topic amongst the research community to increase its visibility; invite colleagues from the same research field to contribute to the Topic within their field of expertise.
- Supervise the whole peer-review process of each submission to assure it is rigorous, fair and transparent. Makes decisions on the acceptance of manuscripts submitted to the Topic.
- Write an editorial for the Topic and support the production of a topic book after the processing of all submissions is finished.
We aim for at least ten articles published per Topic to ensure that it is a substantive collection. Topic Editor should not hold conflicts of interest with the authors whose work they are assessing, e.g., if they are from the same institution or collaborate closely. In this case, the Editor-in-Chief or a suitable Editorial Board member from the participating journal will make the final acceptance decisions for submitted papers.
Topic Editor of Topics are required to have their name(s) and role included on manuscripts they have accepted for publication.
Launching New Open Access Journals with MDPI
For publishing proposals, including the transfer of existing journals, the launch of new titles or the conversion of subscription journals to open access, please contact the New Journal Committee.
Comments and Questions
Please direct your general questions by email to [email protected]. For specific enquiries about a journal, please email the appropriate journal’s Editorial Office directly (please check the journal websites at www.mdpi.com for these email addresses). For a list of MDPI offices, addresses and phone numbers, please see www.mdpi.com/about/contact/.
Last updated: 1 November 2020