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Climate of the Past An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union

Special issue guidelines

Climate of the Past (CP) and its discussion forum Climate of the Past Discussions (CPD) offer an efficient new way of publishing special issues for measurement campaigns, conferences, etc. The individual papers are peer-reviewed and published as soon as they are available in regular issues;  they are then labelled as part of the special issue and linked electronically.

The specific advantages are the following:

  • Publication date is not delayed by the latest paper, which is behind in the peer-review process: every individual contribution to the special issue is published as soon as it is available.
  • Efficient interactive discussion of the common theme takes places on the CPD website.
  • Prepublication of discussion papers in CPD allows efficient cross-referencing between the final revised papers in CP.
  • All contributions are efficiently linked and coherently presented on dedicated special issue web pages (an appropriate logo is welcome as a *.jpg file) easily accessible from the CP/CPD online libraries.
  • Guest editors can define the order of the published papers on the SI web page.
  • Either a non-peer-reviewed editorial preface or a peer-reviewed scientific paper can be used to introduce a special issue.
  • Print versions are available upon completed publication of all contributions. A minimum order of 20 copies is necessary, and the price will depend on the total number of pages in the special issue.  


    The price per printed copy is calculated as follows:

    number of pages × €0.09
    + softcover and binding (€3.00) (hardcover price on request)
    + priority mail (individually calculated)

    = net price + VAT

    Please contact the Copernicus Publications Production Office for an official offer.

Inter-journal special issues

A special issue can comprise publications in any number of Copernicus’ open-access journals, and the special issue editors can be from the same or different journals. It may, however, be advantageous to have representation from editorial board members from more than one of the constituent special issue journals. One journal should be nominated as the notional lead for administrative purposes. The manuscript processing follows the standard special issue procedure of the journal in which the manuscript is submitted. Afterwards, all published papers are co-listed on a joint special issue web page (in addition to the regular chronological volume of each journal).

If you intend to propose an inter-journal special issue, please first send your proposal to the co-editors-in-chief of the lead journal. If your proposal is accepted, please also contact the co-editors-in-chief of the constituent journals to find out if they want to participate in the inter-journal special issue. Only after all journals have agreed, please send all information (see below) on the inter-journal special issue to the Copernicus Publications Editorial Support.

Types of special issues

There are two different types of special issues (SIs):

  1. Special issue (thematic): The normal route is an SI (thematic) that focuses on a particular, often relatively narrow, topic. An SI (thematic) has dedicated guest editors, one of whom must be an existing CP editor, but the others are drawn from the specialist community for the particular topic.
  2. Special issue (collection): In certain cases, where the topic is very broad, spanning a variety of editorial expertise, it is possible to have an SI (collection). In this case an SI coordinator works with the contributors and the CP co-editors-in-chief, but papers are edited by the existing CP editors of the regular editorial board.

Special issue proposal & guidelines for editors

To make arrangements for a special issue of any style, please contact one CP co-editor-in-chief. For a special issue (thematic), please also contact one CP editor covering the relevant subject areas, as you will need one of them on your guest editorial team (see editorial board and journal subject areas). Please provide the following information:

  • title of the special issue;
  • names, affiliations, and short CVs of the proposed special issue editors (SI (thematic)) or coordinator (SI (collection));
  • start date & end date of submission;
  • a statement of the purpose of the special issue, whether it arises out of a conference, and whether it will include only invited papers or is open for all submissions within its scope;
  • before final approval, a list of the planned papers (titles and authors required; abstracts if feasible) for the co-editors-in-chief to review.

Responsibilities of special issue editors and coordinators include the following:

  • coordinate a rigorous peer-review process (at least two independent referees) to the same standard as regular papers.
  • encourage timely submission of the papers expected for the issue.
  • ensure that the English is at a high level, and request copy-editing if necessary.
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