Manuscript Preparation and Submission Requirements for the Journal of Strategic Security

The Journal of Strategic Security (JSS) publishes review articles, original empirical research, and analytic/conceptual works that contribute to a better understanding of security-related threats and ways to prevent or mitigate their impact. Each article should include implications for policy and practice. This document describes the formatting requirements for manuscripts submitted to the Journal of Strategic Security.


Online Submission

Authors should submit manuscripts online via the JSS online manuscript submission and review system. Instructions for creating a user account and using the electronic system can be found here:

Authors are responsible for ensuring that their manuscripts conform to the Journal style. Manuscripts that do not conform to JSS standards–especially footnote citations–will not be published. Authors will be required to re-submit if manuscripts do not conform to the proper JSS format.

Manuscript Style

  • Abstract. Manuscripts should include an abstract of no more than 200 words. There is a text area for you to directly type or copy-and-paste your abstract directly through the online submission process.
  • Author Biography.. Manuscripts should include a brief, one-paragraph author biography (150 words max). See past articles on the JSS website for reference.
  • Keywords.Manuscripts should include three to six keywords that characterize the topic. Select keywords where indicated during the online submission process.
  • Citations. The Journal uses The Chicago Manual Style online. Common formats are available here: http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide/citation-guide-1.html Proper footnote formatting is imperative.
  • Length. Articles published by the Journal of Strategic Security are typically about 3,000 to 5,000 words in length. Occasionally, the Journal will consider publication of shorter or longer articles on a case-by-case basis. Authors should note the reason for substantially longer or shorter articles at the time of submission and may do so by contacting the editors.
  • Original Work. All submissions must be original and not draw substantially from previously published work.

Formatting Requirements

  • Word documents only, please. Manuscripts must be prepared and submitted in Microsoft Word format. Do not submit manuscripts in PDF format.
  • References: Insert footnotes using the MS Word function from the References tab. Ensure footnotes are placed at the bottom of the page, not the end of the document.
    • Footnotes must be in 10 pt. Georgia font and single-spaced.
    • Footnotes must be inserted at the end of the sentence (not in the middle), and follow the punctuation.
    • Footnotes must include, the URL (i.e., web address) of sources, even if authors did not originally access the source online.
    • No parenthetical citations and no bibliographies, please.
  • Justification: Manuscripts should be left-justified, with a ragged right margin.
  • Line-spacing: Manuscripts must be Multiple, at 1.2 (not single or double-spaced).
  • Sentence-spacing: There must only be one space between sentences, not two.
  • Paragraphs: A single line space should be inserted between each new paragraph. New paragraphs should be left-justified, not indented or tabbed.
  • Font:
    • Main Body—11.5 pt. Georgia font, Multiple Line Spacing at 1.2
    • Main Headers—14 pt. Georgia font, regular font-face (not bold)
    • Sub-Headers—12 pt. Georgia font, Italicized
    • Images/Figures/Table Headers—11.5 pt. Georgia font, bold font
    • Footnotes—10 pt. Georgia font, Single Line Spacing (not Multiple)
  • Margins: Manuscripts should have 1.5” inch margins on the Left and Right, and 1” margins on the top and bottom of the page.
  • Punctuation: Use the Oxford serialized comma (i.e., he likes art, science, and literature). Periods and other punctuation must appear inside of quotations (i.e., “end of sentence.”). Footnotes must always appear at the end of the sentence and following all punctuation and quotes (i.e., “footnotes go at the end.”1).

Images, Figures, and Tables:

  • To the extent possible, images and figures should appear in the document where referenced in the text.
  • All images must be included with your submission and saved as high-resolution .jpg or .gif files. High resolution means at least 300 dots per inch (DPI) and at least 800x800 pixels in size. Images created in Word are generally not of sufficient quality and will not typically be accepted.
  • Tables should appear in the document where referenced in the text.
  • Use formal titles for images, figures, and tables using the style: Table/Figure/Image 1: Descriptive Short Title (in bold).

Substantive and Structural Guidelines

The Journal of Strategic Security looks for analytical, well-reasoned, and carefully researched arguments that expand and improve discourse on important strategic security issues. Arguments should be clearly constructed and well-documented. The Journal does not accept undocumented opinion pieces or descriptive papers that fail to provide new insights on an issue. Articles should encourage readers to think about a subject in a new light, provide an assessment of new developments, or add substantive knowledge to the existing literature.

All papers submitted to JSS should be well-documented with the supporting references appropriately cited in footnotes per The Chicago Manual of Style. Common formats are available here: http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide/citation-guide-1.html

JSS readers include researchers, practitioners, and policy-makers in the field of strategic security studies, and authors should be mindful of this diverse audience.

The Journal of Strategic Security looks for articles that include the following elements:

  • Introduction—sshould state the author’s purpose and present a clearly defined thesis statement. The author should present a concise “roadmap” that helps the reader anticipate the structure of the paper.
  • Body—each section of the paper should be relevant to the author’s thesis. Every word should count. Every paragraph should begin with a central idea followed by properly cited supporting evidence. Authors should also remember to include and address counterarguments. Use headers and sub-headers to denote new topics and break up the text to improve organization and readability.
  • Conclusion—the conclusion should summarize the main points of the argument as they relate to the central thesis. The author should suggest courses of action or policy recommendations. The Journal of Strategic Security looks for papers that are not just descriptive, but analytic and/or prescriptive—revealing important insights and developing creative strategies for the future.


  • All abbreviations/acronyms should be defined at their first use.
  • Foreign words and phrases should be italicized in each instance.
  • Long quotations (more than three lines) should be set off from the surrounding text by additional space above and below; use quotation marks and footnote the reference with a full citation.
  • Page numbers should be included at the bottom right of each page in Georgia font 11.5.
  • Authors should carefully proofread manuscripts to ensure manuscripts contain no typographical, spelling, or grammatical errors.
  • Please use English (U.S.) as the default input and proofing language in Word.