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Editorial Policy and Instructions for Authors

 [Editorial Policy][Instructions for Authors][Required items and peer review criteria

Editorial Policy

Editorial Policy [ PDF:143KB ]

Synthesiology Editorial Board

Objective of the journal

The objective of Synthesiology is to publish papers that address the integration of scientific knowledge or how to combine individual elemental technologies and scientific findings to enable the utilization in society of research and development efforts. The authors of the papers are researchers and engineers, and the papers are documents that describe, using “scientific words”, the process and the product of research which tries to introduce the results of research to society. In conventional academic journals, papers describe scientific findings and technological results as facts (i.e. factual knowledge), but in Synthesiology, papers are the description of “the knowledge of what ought to be done” to make use of the findings and results for society. Our aim is to establish methodology for utilizing scientific research result and to seek general principles for this activity by accumulating this knowledge in a journal form. Also, we hope that the readers of Synthesiology will obtain ways and directions to transfer their research results to society.

Content of paper

The content of the research paper should be the description of the result and the process of research and development aimed to be delivered to society. The paper should state the goal of research, and what values the goal will create for society (Items 1 and 2, described in the Table). Then, the process (the scenario) of how to select the elemental technologies, necessary to achieve the goal, how to integrate them, should be described. There should also be a description of what new elemental technologies are required to solve a certain social issue, and how these technologies are selected and integrated (Item 3). We expect that the contents will reveal specific knowledge only available to researchers actually involved in the research. That is, rather than describing the combination of elemental technologies as consequences, the description should include the reasons why the elemental technologies are selected, and the reasons why new methods are introduced (Item 4). For example, the reasons may be: because the manufacturing method in the laboratory was insufficient for industrial application; applicability was not broad enough to stimulate sufficient user demand rather than improved accuracy; or because there are limits due to current regulations. The academic details of the individual elemental technology should be provided by citing published papers, and only the important points can be described. There should be description of how these elemental technologies are related to each other, what are the problems that must be resolved in the integration process, and how they are solved (Item 5). Finally, there should be descriptions of how closely the goals are achieved by the products and the results obtained in research and development, and what subjects are left to be accomplished in the future (Item 6).

Subject of research and development

Since the journal aims to seek methodology for utilizing the products of research and development, there are no limitations on the field of research and development. Rather, the aim is to discover general principles regardless of field, by gathering papers on wide-ranging fields of science and technology. Therefore, it is necessary for authors to offer description that can be understood by researchers who are not specialists, but the content should be of sufficient quality that is acceptable to fellow researchers.

Research and development are not limited to those areas for which the products have already been introduced into society, but research and development conducted for the purpose of future delivery to society should also be included.

For innovations that have been introduced to society, commercial success is not a requirement. Notwithstanding there should be descriptions of the process of how the technologies are integrated taking into account the introduction to society, rather than describing merely the practical realization process.

Peer review

There shall be a peer review process for Synthesiology, as in other conventional academic journals. However, peer review process of Synthesiology is different from other journals. While conventional academic journals emphasize evidential matters such as correctness of proof or the reproducibility of results, this journal emphasizes the rationality of integration of elemental technologies, the clarity of criteria for selecting elemental technologies, and overall efficacy and adequacy (peer review criteria is described in the Table).

In general, the quality of papers published in academic journals is determined by a peer review process. The peer review of this journal evaluates whether the process and rationale necessary for introducing the product of research and development to society are described sufficiently well. In other words, the role of the peer reviewers is to see whether the facts necessary to be known to understand the process of introducing the research finding to society are written out; peer reviewers will judge the adequacy of the description of what readers want to know as reader representatives.

In ordinary academic journals, peer reviewers are anonymous for reasons of fairness and the process is kept secret. That is because fairness is considered important in maintaining the quality in established academic journals that describe factual knowledge. On the other hand, the format, content, manner of text, and criteria have not been established for papers that describe the knowledge of “what ought to be done.” Therefore, the peer review process for this journal will not be kept secret but will be open. Important discussions pertaining to the content of a paper, may arise in the process of exchanges with the peer reviewers and they will also be published. Moreover, the vision or desires of the author that cannot be included in the main text will be presented in the exchanges. The quality of the journal will be guaranteed by making the peer review process transparent and by disclosing the review process that leads to publication.

Disclosure of the peer review process is expected to indicate what points authors should focus upon when they contribute to this journal. The names of peer reviewers will be published since the papers are completed by the joint effort of the authors and reviewers in the establishment of the new paper format for Synthesiology.

References

As mentioned before, the description of individual elemental technology should be presented as citation of papers published in other academic journals. Also, for elemental technologies that are comprehensively combined, papers that describe advantages and disadvantages of each elemental technology can be used as references. After many papers are accumulated through this journal, authors are recommended to cite papers published in this journal that present similar procedure about the selection of elemental technologies and the introduction to society. This will contribute in establishing a general principle of methodology.

Types of articles published

Synthesiology should be composed of general overviews such as opening statements, research papers, and editorials. The Editorial Board, in principle, should commission overviews. Research papers are description of content and the process of research and development conducted by the researchers themselves, and will be published after the peer review process is complete. Editorials are expository articles for science and technology that aim to increase utilization by society, and can be any content that will be useful to readers of Synthesiology. Overviews and editorials will be examined by the Editorial Board as to whether their content is suitable for the journal. Entries of research papers and editorials are accepted from Japan and overseas. Manuscripts may be written in Japanese or English.

Instructions for Authors

Instructions for Authors [ PDF:210KB ]

Synthesiology” Editorial Board
Established December 26, 2007
Revised April 1, 2017

  1. Types of articles submitted and their explanations
    The articles of Synthesiology include the following types:
    •Research papers, reports, commentaries, roundtable talks, and readers' forums
    Of these, the submitted manuscripts of research papers, reports, and commentaries undergo review processes before publication. The roundtable talks are organized, prepared, and published by the Editorial Board. The readers' forums carry writings submitted by the readers, and the articles are published after the Editorial Board reviews and approves. All articles must be written so they can be readily understood by the readers from diverse research fields and technological backgrounds. The explanations of the article types are as follows.

    (1)Research papers
    A research paper rationally describes the concept and the design of R&D (this is called the scenario), whose objective is to utilize the research results in society, as well as the processes and the research results, based on the author's experiences and analyses of the R&D that was actually conducted. Although the paper requires the author's originality for its scenario and the selection and integration of elemental technologies, whether the research result has been (or is being) already implemented in society at that time is not a requirement for the submission. The submitted manuscript is reviewed by several reviewers, and the reviewers will recommend whether the manuscript should be accepted, revised, or declined. The author completes the final draft based on the discussions with the reviewers. Views may be exchanged between the reviewers and authors through direct contact (including telephone conversations, e-mails, and others), if the Editorial Board considers such exchange necessary.

    (2)Reports
    A report describes a development example of technology which has practical value as well as an example of new technology which has been put to practical use. It contains 1) the aim, 2) the process of development (the course to the goal), and 3) the outcomes. The submitted manuscript is checked by the Editorial Board. The authors will be contacted if corrections or revisions are necessary, and the authors complete the final draft based on the Board members' comments.
     
    (3)Commentaries
    Commentaries describe the thoughts, statements, or trends and analyses on how to utilize or spread the results of R&D to society. Although the originality of the statements is not required, the commentaries should not be the same or similar to any articles published in the past. The submitted manuscripts will be checked by the Editorial Board. The authors will be contacted if corrections or revisions are necessary, and the authors complete the final draft based on the Board members' comments.

    (4)Roundtable talks
    Roundtable talks are articles of the discussions or interviews that are organized by the Editorial Board. The manuscripts are written from the transcripts of statements and discussions of the roundtable participants. Supplementary comments may be added after the roundtable talks, if necessary.
     
    (5)Readers' forums
    The readers' forums include the readers' comments or thoughts on the articles published in Synthesiology, or articles containing information useful to the readers in line with the intent of the journal. The forum articles may be in free format, with 1,200 Japanese characters or less. The Editorial Board will decide whether the articles will be published.

  2. Qualification of contributors
    There are no limitations regarding author affiliation or discipline as long as the content of the submitted article meets the editorial policy of Synthesiology, except authorship should be clearly stated. (It should be clearly stated that all authors have made essential contributions to the paper.)
     
  3. Manuscripts
    • 3.1 General
      • 3.1.1 Articles may be submitted in Japanese or English.
        Accepted articles will be published in Synthesiology (ISSN 1882-6229) in the language they were submitted. All articles will also be published in Synthesiology - English edition (ISSN 1883-0978). The English edition will be distributed throughout the world approximately four months after the original Synthesiology issue is published. Articles written in English will be published in English in both the original Synthesiology as well as the English edition. Authors who write articles for Synthesiology in Japanese will be asked to provide English translations for the English edition of the journal within 2 months after the original edition is published.
      • 3.1.2 Research papers should comply with the structure and format stated below, and reports and commentaries should also comply with the same structure and format except subtitles and abstracts are unnecessary.
      • 3.1.3 Research papers should only be original papers (new literary work).
      • 3.1.4 Research papers should comply with various guidelines of research ethics
    • 3.2 Structure
      • 3.2.1 The manuscript should include a title (including subtitle), abstract, the name(s) of author(s), institution/contact, main text, and keywords (about 5 words).
      • 3.2.2 Title, abstract, name of author(s), keywords, and institution/contact shall be provided in Japanese and English.
      • 3.2.3 The manuscript shall be prepared using word processors or similar devices, and printed on A4-size portrait (vertical) sheets of paper. The length of the manuscript shall be, about 6 printed pages including figures, tables, and photographs.
      • 3.2.4 Research papers, reports, and commentaries shall have front covers and the category of the articles (research paper, report, or commentary) shall be stated clearly on the cover sheets.
      • 3.2.5 The title should be about 10-20 Japanese characters (5-10 English words), and readily understandable for a diverse readership background. Research papers shall have subtitles of about 15-25 Japanese characters (7-15 English words) to help recognition by specialists.
      • 3.2.6 The abstract should include the thoughts behind the integration of technological elements and the reason for their selection as well as the scenario for utilizing the research results in society.
      • 3.2.7 The abstract should be 300 Japanese characters or less (125 English words). The Japanese abstract may be omitted in the English edition.
      • 3.2.8 The main text should be about 9,000 Japanese characters (3,400 English words).
      • 3.2.9 The article submitted should be accompanied by profiles of all authors, of about 200 Japanese characters (75 English words) for each author. The essential contribution of each author to the paper should also be included. Confirm that all persons who have made essential contributions to the paper are included.
      • 3.2.10 Discussion with reviewers regarding the research paper content shall be done openly, and the Editorial Board will edit the highlights of the review process to about 3,000 Japanese characters (1,200 English words) or a maximum of 2 pages with the names of the reviewers disclosed. The edited discussion will be attached to the main body of the paper as part of the article. Regarding the reports and the commentaries, discussion with the Editorial Board members will be opened at the Board's discretion. In this case, the Editorial Board will edit the discussion to about 800 Japanese characters (less than half a page) with the names of the Board members disclosed.
      • 3.2.11 If there are reprinted figures, graphs or citations from other papers, prior permission for citation must be obtained and should be clearly stated in the paper, and the sources should be listed in the reference list. A copy of the permission should be sent to the Publishing Secretariat. All verbatim quotations should be placed in quotation marks or marked clearly within the paper.
    • 3.3 Format
      • 3.3.1 The headings for chapters should be 1, 2, 3…, for subchapters, 1.1, 1.2, 1.3…, for sections, 1.1.1, 1.1.2, 1.1.3, for subsections, 1.1.1.1, 1.1.1.2, 1.1.1.3. 
      • 3.3.2 The chapters, subchapters, and sections should be enumerated. There should be one line space before each paragraph.
      • 3.3.3 Figures, tables, and photographs should be enumerated. They should each have a title and an explanation (about 20-40 Japanese characters or 10-20 English words), and their positions in the text should be clearly indicated.
      • 3.3.4 For figures, image files (resolution 350 dpi or higher) should be submitted. In principle, the final print will be in black and white.
      • 3.3.5 For photographs, image files (resolution 350 dpi or higher) should be submitted. In principle, the final print will be in black and white.
      • 3.3.6 References should be listed in order of citation in the main text.
        Journal – [No.] Author(s): Title of article, Title of journal (italic), Volume(Issue), Starting page–Ending page (Year of publication).
        Book – [No.] Author(s): Title of book (italic), Starting page–Ending page, Publisher, Place of Publication (Year of publication).
        Website – [No.] Author(s) name (updating year): Title of web page, Name of website (may be omitted If the name of the website is the same as that of the author(s)), URL, Access date.
  4. Submission
    One printed copy or electronic file (Word file) of manuscript with a checklist attached should be submitted to the following
    address:
    Synthesiology Editorial Board
    c/o Public Relations Information Office, Planning Headquarters, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology(AIST)
    Tsukuba Central 1 , 1-1-1 Umezono, Tsukuba 305-8560
    The submitted article will not be returned.
  5. Proofreading
    Proofreading by author(s) of articles after typesetting is complete will be done once. In principle, only correction of printing errors is allowed in the proofreading stage.
  6. Responsibility
    The author(s) will be solely responsible for the content of the contributed article.
  7. Copyright
    The copyright of the articles published in “Synthesiology” and “Synthesiology English edition” shall belong to the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology(AIST).

Required items and peer review criteria

Required items and peer review criteria(January 2008)
NO. Item Requirement Peer Review Criteria
1 Research goal Describe research goal (“product” or researcher's vision). Research goal is described clearly.
2 Relationship of research goal and the society Describe relationship of research goal and the society, or its value for the society. Relationship of research goal and the society is rationally described.
3 Scenario Describe the scenario or hypothesis to achieve research goal with “scientific words”. Scenario or hypothesis is rationally described.
4 Selection of elemental technology(ies) Describe the elemental technology(ies) selected to achieve the research goal. Also describe why the particular elemental technology(ies) was/were selected. Elemental technology(ies) is/are clearly described. Reason for selecting the elemental technology(ies) is rationally described.
5 Relationship and integration of elemental technologies Describe how the selected elemental technologies are related to each other, and how the research goal was achieved by composing and integrating the elements, with “scientific words”. Mutual relationship and integration of elemental technologies are rationally described with “scientific words”.
6 Evaluation of result and future development Provide self-evaluation on the degree of achievement of research goal. Indicate future research development based on the presented research. Degree of achievement of research goal and future research direction are objectively and rationally described.
7 Originality Do not describe the same content published previously in other research papers. There is no description of the same content published in other research papers.

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