We would like to thank the interested guest editors for their willingness to serve as Guest Editor for a Special Issue of 'IEEE Design & Test' magazine (D&T). Special Issues are of high interest to the D&T readership, and hence, we value their willingness to contribute to serving those needs. These instructions are intended to help interested Guest Editors to prepare a successful Special Issue proposal to D&T. It consists of three sections.
Overview of the selection process and associated timeline.
Guidelines for D&T Special Issue proposals.
Example of a previous D&T Special Issue proposal.
D&T's Selection Process for Special Issue Proposals
D&T has a selection process for Special Issue Proposals that consists of the following steps.
Submission of a Special Issue proposal.
Proposals for a Special Issue are typically prepared by the prospective Guest Editors. These proposals can be either solicited by the Editor-In-Chief (EIC) or Members of the Editorial Board, but it is also possible to send in an unsolicited proposal. Proposals need to be submitted to the EIC (2016-2017: Joerg Henkel, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Completeness check by EIC.
The EIC checks if the proposal is complete w.r.t. the guidelines for Special Issue proposals. These guidelines are detailed in Section 2 of this document. If the proposal is considered incomplete, it will be returned to the proposers, with the request to complete the proposal.
First review round by Editorial Board.
Complete proposals are forwarded by the EIC to the Members of the Editorial Board. These members are requested to review the proposal w.r.t. suitability for D&T. The attractiveness of the topic and proposed papers and potential overlap with other recent or upcoming D&T issues are included in the evaluation. The Editorial Board members send their comments in private to the EIC, in order not to bias each other's opinions. The EIC collects all comments.
Second review round by Editorial Board.
The EIC sends the collected review comments to all Members of the Editorial Board, who are now invited to take note of the comments by their peers, perhaps conduct an online discussion, and ultimately form a final opinion. These final opinions are again collected by the EIC.
Final decision by EIC.
The EIC takes a final decision regarding Acceptance or Rejection of the Special Issue proposal, taking into account the results of the preceding review process. The EIC informs the proposers, as well as the Editorial Board, of the decision.
Guidelines for D&T Special Issue Proposals
D&T Special Issues are typically issues on a theme that is of interest to many readers of D&T. In its motivation section, the proposal should make clear to the Editorial Board why the proposed theme is current, relevant, and of interest. In the spirit of the name of the periodical, the Guest Editors should make an effort to select a theme such that both 'design' and 'test' aspects can be covered.
A successful Special Issue contains five or six articles of max. 5,000 words each. Details on manuscript length, number of figures and tables, etc. can be found here. It is recommended to start the Special Issue with an overview, survey, or tutorial article that properly introduces the field, while the remainder might contain a mix of research- and application-oriented papers. As experts on the topic area covered by the Special Issue, the Guest Editors are encouraged to co-author this tutorial article. Alternatively, they can also solicit such an article from other experts in the field. In case the Special Issue submissions yield more good and publishable manuscripts then fitting within one Special Issue, the remaining ('overflow') articles can be published as part of the regular publication queue in subsequent D&T issues.
The Guest Editors are required to work with D&T editors of the Last Byte and Perspectives departments to prepare appropriate columns for the Special Issue, A list of these department editors can be found on the D&T website. Sidebars are an especially attractive feature of D&T articles. The Guest Editors are therefore encouraged to work with paper contributors to include sidebars wherever appropriate, Each paper published in the Special Issue includes a short editor's note (written by a Guest Editor) as an introduction to the readers. The Guest Editors are also required to write an Editorial for the Special Issue. This editorial is typically two pages long; its purpose is to motivate the Special Issue topic and highlight the papers that constitute the Special Issue.
Most D&T Special Issues contain a mix of invited papers and submissions in response to an open Call for Papers. This requires the Special Issue proposal to have both (1) a list of (to be) invited authors, as well as (2) a Call for Papers.
The list of invited authors should reflect the Guest Editors' projected 'dream-team' content for the Special Issue. In the spirit of the name of the periodical, the Guest Editors should make an effort to include both 'design' and 'test' aspects in their list of invited authors. It is recommended that already just on the basis of this invited authors list, an attractive Special Issue can be put together. Confirmations that some or all 'dream team' authors will indeed submit to the Special Issue do make the proposal stronger.
The open Call for Papers is meant to attract additional submissions, beyond the 'dream team' content put together by the Guest Editors. This should allow anyone, also outside the network of the Guest Editors, to submit to D&T Special Issues. Often times, Guest Editors are positively surprised by unsolicited submissions. The Call for Papers will be published in a preceding issue of D&T. Next, it is recommended that the Guest Editors give a wide distribution to the Call for Papers. The Special Issue proposal should contain information on the distribution plans for the Call for Papers. Before publication, the text of the Call for Papers will be edited by a D&T professional editor for clarity, structure, conciseness, grammar, passive to active voice, logical organization, readability, and adherence to style (as is also common for accepted D&T articles).
All submissions, including the submissions of invited authors, need to undergo the regular D&T review cycle. Hence, Guest Editors must not make up-front guarantees to (prospective) authors that solicited submissions will be accepted.
Sample Special Issue Proposal
Please find below an example of a recent (successful) Special Issue proposal. The dream team list has been deleted to ensure anonymity.
Special Issue Proposal Submissions
Design & Test welcomes proposals from experts in a computing niche who would like to serve as guest editors of a Special Issue. Send them to the EDITOR IN CHIEF.