Guidelines for SP Magazine Special Issue Guest Editors

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Guidelines for Signal Processing Magazine
Special Issue - Guest Editors

Please follow the guidelines below for Signal Processing Magazine Special Issue submissions.
For the listing of the current SPM Editorial Board team and their contacts, visit the SPM Editorial Board page.

Updated: June 2024

1. Focus

SPM publishes timely tutorial-style articles focusing on comprehensive reviews of important, broad, and established fields within the scope of signal processing. We strive to achieve the highest level of publication quality, scholarly impact, and reader benefit.

2. Proposal Criteria

Before proposing a specific topic, we encourage prospective guest editors to discuss the appropriateness of the topic with the 'Area Editor - Special Issues',  or the 'Editor-in-Chief (EiC)'. The formal white paper submission and review is handled via ScholarOne Manuscripts

The proposal should have the following organization. Each point should be addressed with sufficient detail and clear evidence.

  • Introduction: Motivation, timeliness, and importance of the topic (e.g., popular or special sessions in conferences, research projects, funding programs, or industry consortia). We ask for this information to ensure that the topic is of current interest and will generate enough submissions.
  • Biographic Information: Qualification, track records, and broad representation of the Guest Editors (GEs). Include short bios of each proposing GE. It is suggested that a proposal for a special issue should have at least 3 and at most 5 GEs. The GEs should be from different institutions and geographically diverse. The same guidelines for selecting Associate Editors for the Society Transactions should generally apply when selecting GEs, e.g., seniority and tenure (for proposers from academic institutions). At least one of the GEs must be an active member of the IEEE Signal Processing Society.
  • Topics: A tentative list of topics to be covered in the special issue. This may be in bullet form with additional explanations as needed.
  • Potential Authors: A list of potential list of authors. As a means of advertising the special issues, the proposers should solicit articles from experts (to be clear, not invited authors, just an encouragement to submit). 
  • Relation to Other Special Issues: Relation to any recent special issues published or planned for publication in SPM or other journals/transactions/magazines. Proposals overlapping with any topic covered recently or in the near future in SPM or other publications are discouraged. A list of recent topics covered by SPM can be found on the Information for Authors-SPM page. Sample proposals for special issues are available upon request.
  • Call-for-Papers: A draft call-for-papers should be provided in a near-finalized form for printing. The following should be included:
    • Title
    • Description
    • Topics
    • Submission process, indicating that manuscripts are to be submitted according to the Information for Authors as published in any recent issue of SPM and as available on the Signal Processing Society website.
    • Important dates following the below example based on a tentative publication date, which can be obtained from the Area Editor
      • 1 August 2024 - White paper due
      • 1 September 2024 - Invitation notification
      • 1 November 2024 - Full length manuscripts due
      • 1 January 2025 - First review to authors
      • 1 March 2025 - Revision due
      • 1 May 2025 - Final decision
      • 1 June 2025 - Final package due
      • 1 September 2025 - Publish manuscript
      • The IEEE logo and the logo of the IEEE Signal Processing Society

3. Proposal Review

The Senior Editorial Board of SPM reviews proposals for special issues. The decision to approve or reject a proposal is made by the Special Issues Area Editor and the EiC, based on the reviews from the Editorial Board members.

4. Open Call for White Papers

After the special issue proposal is approved, the GEs should finalize their call-for-papers and send to the Signal Processing Society Publications office after which an open call for white papers for the Special Issue will be issued.

5. Marketing and Submissions

GEs should make their best effort to disseminate the call-for-papers widely through announcements in conferences, newsletters, and online advertisement. SPS will make the call-for-papers available on the Signal Processing Magazine website. 

Submission of white papers (maximum 5 pages using the template) will be handled through Scholar One.

GEs will have accounts established in Scholar One at least one month prior to the white paper deadline. Scholar One will be opened at least two weeks in advance of the submission deadline to allow authors to submit their white papers. Rebecca Wollman ( is the main point of contact.

The main objective of the white paper review process is to ensure that only high-quality and relevant submissions are invited for possible inclusion in the Special Issue. The submitted white papers (except those of GEs) will be reviewed by the GEs.

The GEs are expected to work with the Special Issues Area Editor and the EiC whenever they need feedback. In the white paper decision notification (which is sent by the Lead GE), a summary of reviews should be sent to authors to justify the decision.

Papers submitted with one of the GEs as a co-author will be handled by someone from the Editorial Board (Area Editor, EiC or a Senior Editorial Board member) selected by the Special Issues Area Editors. Up to three such papers are allowed per special issue, and each GE cannot appear on more than one publication. The GEs must notify the Area Editor for Special Issues two weeks in advance to indicate how many papers to expect from the GEs. The GEs must also remind the Area Editor when their papers are submitted, as they need to be handled through a separate review process.

The GEs (or their coauthors) are encouraged to send an email to the Special Issues Area Editor and Rebecca Wollman, informing them that their full paper is submitted.

6. Review Process

Acceptance of white papers should be competitive.  The exact acceptance rate will depend on the quality of the submissions, the number of submissions, and the target number of full-length articles for the special issue. Selected full-length article review process.

Authors of selected proposals will be invited to prepare full-length manuscripts. Each full paper will be assigned to a GE who will manage the peer review process. Each full paper should be reviewed by at least three experts in the field, with the exceptions that two reviews may be considered sufficient when the reviews are consistent and thorough.

Acceptance or rejection of each paper is decided for the publication in the corresponding special issue only. Further, articles that suffer from extended delays in either the review or revision process may be excluded from the special issue and not published later.

7. Editorial

The GEs should write an editorial of one to two printed pages) setting the scope of the special issue, motivation and importance of the topic. It is encouraged that they acknowledge the service of the reviewers as part of the editorial. The editorial should be submitted to the Signal Processing Society Office strictly within one month from the date of acceptance of the last paper for the Special Issue.

8. Note on avoiding conflicts of interest

To ensure a high-quality special issue and to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest, the GEs are reminded that the following people are excluded from taking part in the review process of a particular paper:

  • any person in the same organization as any of the authors.
  • any research collaborators of any of the authors.
  • present or former students, advisors or any people closely connected to any of the authors.

If a GE is in any of the above categories, the GE cannot handle the paper. Another GE should be selected. If all the GEs fall into the above categories for a particular paper, please let the Special Issues Area Editor know for special arrangements.


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