This journal welcomes papers where (a) software engineering tasks are being explored  (in some non-trivial manner); and (b) the activity being automated (or semi-automated) is too complex for manual analysis (given reasonable resource constraints). For example, a manual requirements engineering method would not be acceptable here. On the other hand, what could be acceptable would be a novel tool (e,g.  automatic natural language analysis) that  supports that requirements engineering process. 

This journal also seeks proposals for special issues. Before submitting a special issue proposal, please check that there are no past special issues on the same topic: https://www.springer.com/journal/10515/updates/19900134

The journal has a preference for open science practices that allows other researchers to examine and extend the published work and other people to access the results freely. These practices include public disclosure of data, analyses scripts, artifacts, and self-archived manuscripts. Open artifacts need to be “available” as defined by the ACM artifacts standard; i.e. placed on a publicly accessible archival repository where a DOI and a link to this repository is provided (for example, a Github repo with at least one release registered at Zenodo would satisfy this criteria; see https://guides.github.com/activities/citable-code/). That said, the journal gratefully accepts non-open science papers. Specifically, all submissions will undergo the same review process independent of their use of open science practices. Also, for industrial papers, it is understood that industrial papers have the right not to disclose their data, e.g., for confidentiality reasons.

Submissions must be in PDF and formatted according to the standards of this journal (see https://www.springer.com/journal/10515/submission-guidelines). We encourage a wide range of submission types (see list below) including:

  • Short papers of 3 to 8 pages, for which the journal will endeavor to perform expedited reviewing
  • Longer papers at least 10 pages long
  • Pages longer than 50 pages are discouraged but in special cases, will be allowed.
Details on paper types:

Technical paper (MDN); Length: 10+ pages (usually less than 50). Technical papers are archival records of completed research, usually with an evidence-based evaluation of hypotheses (e.g experiments on some SE-related data with a statistical analysis).  
Industrial paper (MV); Length: 3+ pages (usually less than 50); Contains can vary and might include reports an early prototype or deployed version of an automated software engineering task, or experiences/challenges during the deployment of such automation.
Literature review (MDO); Length: 10+ pages (usually less than 50); For literature reviews at this journal, merely describing prior work is not sufficient. Literature reviews should identify gaps in prior work and propose ways to address that gap. Exceptional literature reviews actually perform some of those experiments.
Vision statement (M); Length: 3-8 pages; Contains motivation (but usually note: A carefully stated opinion, perhaps yet without supporting experimentation.) For example, see “Edgar Dijkstra: Go To Statement Considered Harmful”, https://homepages.cwi.nl/~storm/teaching/reader/Dijkstra68.pdf
Registered report (MD); Length: 3+ pages (usually less than 50); Documenting formative research ideas and a hypothesis, perhaps without a longer investigation--these should include motivation and a proposed analysis method. Ideally, registered reports are followed up by a registered results paper.
Registered results (N); Length: 10+ pages (usually less than 50). Such results papers are usually follow-up to an initial registered report. These papers need a short summary of the motivation and method but that summary can refer the reader to the prior registered report paper (to get all the details). Registered reports can be explorative (of new ground) or confirmative (i.e. checking a prior result). For exploratory studies, updating the hypothesis after seeing new results is allowed, providing that update is made is a principled manner (using some principle process).
Tutorial (MO); Length: Method (not new results); Tutorials (a) need to be based on “available” material (as defined in the “Open Science” section of our call for papers).  Such papers need to (b) review the research area addressed by some tool/algorithm/technique/data set and (c) suggest a list of significant open issues that could be addressed with the tool or data set. Tutorials are evaluated according to their potential to enable future work.
Tool report (D); Length: 3-8 pages; Short report offering some notes on some reusable tool/artifact/data set describing, along with open issues with that tool or data set that could be explored further. Tool reports are evaluated according to their potential to enable future work.
KEY:
M = a discussion that motivated some field of inquiry.
D = a discussion of methods.
N = new results.
O = and extensive discussion on on results.
V = contains many vary.
 The average time from submission to first decision in 2021 is 54 days.

Journal information

Editor-in-Chief
  • Tim Menzies
Publishing model
Hybrid (Transformative Journal). How to publish with us, including Open Access

Journal metrics

1.677 (2021)
Impact factor
2.580 (2021)
Five year impact factor
40 days
Submission to first decision (Median)
36,598 (2021)
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Electronic ISSN
1573-7535
Print ISSN
0928-8910
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