ISA Encyclopedia Guidelines and Policy

Guidelines and Policies

About the publication

The International Studies Encyclopedia (formerly the Compendium Project (ISCP)) is a double-blind peer-reviewed research tool for scholars and students of international studies.  It seeks to publish high quality reviews of the scholarly literature for specific topics within the field, with each essay being about 10,000 words in length and neutral in tone. 

The project includes print and online resources.  Print resources include the International Studies Encyclopedia, which was published in 2009 and is available for library purchase, and the continuing publication of the International Studies Compendia book series.  The Compendia volumes are compilations of section- and topic-specific essays that are suitable for personal library and course adoption.  The online resource is International Studies Online, which includes all essays that were published in the print Encyclopedia, as well as new and updated essays.  Each annual update of International Studies Online includes approximately twenty new and updated essays.  Individuals who are members of the International Studies Association receive free access to International Studies Online as a benefit of membership, and libraries may subscribe to it through the Wiley Online Reference Library.

From 2013 to 2017, the General Editor of the Encyclopedia is Renée Marlin-Bennett, Professor of Political Science, Johns Hopkins University.  The Project Manager is Ms. Molly Balikov.  The Encyclopedia is organized around the sections of ISA.  For a list of section editors, please refer to the Editorial Team page.

Essay topics are assigned to prospective authors by section editors.  The authors then have six months to write and submit their review.  The next step is double-blind peer review of the submission.  Essays may be rejected, accepted, or returned to the authors for revision and resubmission. 

Essays must first be assigned to the author to be eligible for consideration for publication.  Submissions of unassigned essays are not accepted at this time.  Further, essays must be neutral reviews of the scholarly literature.  Reports of new findings and opinion pieces are not appropriate for this publication.

How to request assignment of an Encyclopedia essay

New essays for existing topics.  Some of the initial topics proposed for the Encyclopedia have not yet been written.  Potential authors are invited to contact the appropriate section editor (see list on our "Editorial Team" page) or the General Editor, Renée Marlin-Bennett (oreis@isanet.org), with information about their areas of expertise to inquire about the availability of topics for assignment.

Proposals of new topics.  Scholars are also invited to review the list of published, assigned, and open for assignment essays in their fields of expertise.  If they identify a missing topic that ought to be reviewed and would like to undertake that review, they are welcome to propose the topic and themselves as the author.  Please contact the appropriate section editor.  Proposals for new topics undergo a review process that is separate from the refereeing of submissions.  Section editors are encouraged to assign new topics to the scholar who proposed it, but this decision cannot be guaranteed.  Acceptance of the essay for publication is contingent on the normal review process for the Encyclopedia.

Updates to existing essays.  Authors of existing essays will be asked to provide an update for essays that were published four or more years prior.  If the author declines to provide an update and if the section editor determines that advances in the scholarly literature on that topic are sufficient to require a new review, an essay on the newer literature will be opened for assignment.  This kind of essay may, at the discretion of the editorial team, be shorter that the usual Encyclopedia essay.

The International Studies Association

Representing over 100 countries, ISA has more than 6,500 members worldwide and is the most respected and widely known scholarly association in this field. Endeavoring to create communities of scholars dedicated to international studies, ISA is divided into 6 geographic subdivisions of ISA (Regions), 29 thematic groups (Sections) and 4 Caucuses which provide opportunities to exchange ideas and research with local colleagues and within specific subject areas.
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