Information for Authors

Authors should also be familiar with the journal’s focus and scope, which can be found on our About page.

Mapping the Impossible exclusively accepts academic papers of between 3000 and 5000 words, including references but excluding bibliographies. For full instructions on how to submit, please see our Submissions page.

Since this is a student journal, authors must be current students or within one year of graduation when they submit their abstract.

All submissions should be well-written and clearly structured. The editorial team can carry out some basic copy editing but submissions that contain a substantial number of typographical or grammatical errors will be returned to the author for revision. All submissions should be written in English. We can accept submissions written in American or International English, provided that the chosen form is used consistently throughout.

Mapping the Impossible has an in-house style guide, which is available here.

The Editorial Process 

Once submitted, your submission will be viewed by the journal’s Editorial Board to determine if the subject matter is a good fit for Mapping the Impossible. The Board will also make an initial assessment of the quality of the writing and check that the Mapping the Impossible Style Guide has been followed. If the Board believes your submission may be suitable for publication, it will be assigned to a handling editor to see through the editorial process and then assigned to two or three Reviewers for peer review. These Reviewers will independently assess whether your submission is: 

  • well-written and clearly structured
  • sufficiently original
  • properly referenced, with due consideration of previous scholarship. 

Mapping the Impossible‘s current review policy is double anonymous, meaning that the reviewers will not know the identity of the author, and the author will not know the identity of the reviewers. 

Reviewer comments are collated by the Editor overseeing the paper. Reviewers are asked to provide constructive feedback, with the aim of helping to make your submission as good as possible, even if it is not ultimately published in the journal. 

All Reviewers will make one of the following recommendations to the Editorial Board: 

  • Accept Submission: this is rarely used, but indicates that the submission should be accepted with no changes. 
  • Revisions Required: this is commonly used, and indicates that the author needs to make some small changes before publication. The changes will be reviewed by the editor and no further peer review will be required. 
  • Resubmit for Review: this indicates that major changes are required, but the submission does show promise. The author will need to make the requested changes and go through another round of peer review, ideally with the same reviewers. 
  • Decline Submission: this indicates that the submission is not suitable for the journal. This often means that it simply falls outside the scope of the journal, and our editors may recommend it for a different publication.

The Editorial Board will then meet to discuss all of the Reviewer recommendations and decide if a paper should be published. After this, Authors will receive an email to inform them of the outcome, including Reviewer comments. As shown in the diagram below, Authors may be asked to make minor or more significant changes to their submission before publication: even the best papers are likely to require some modification. 

The submission, review, and publication process, summarised: