Guidelines for authors

Before submitting your paper to Evolutionary Computation, please read both the publisher's guidelines for author, and the more dedicated text below.

Excerpt from Marc Schoenauer's Editorial Introduction of Evolutionary Computation 14(4) - Winter 2006

... to avoid disillusion on the authors' side, and extra work on our side, it seems necessary to remind ourselves of a few basic requirements that are mandatory for papers to even be considered for publication in any journal. I will arbitrarily distinguish between three types of work, though I am well aware that many papers, if not all, contain work that belongs to more than one category.

Theoretical results: submitted material should include all proofs. While conference papers, because of space limitation, often cannot present the complete proofs, journal papers must be self-contained, or refer to easily accessible published results when citing existing proofs (e.g. no "Personal Communication"). In exceptional cases (e.g. Andrew Wiles' proof of Fermat theorem), parts of the proofs can be added as side material.

Experimental results: as in all experimental sciences, the first requirement is that of reproducibility. All details of the algorithm, parameter values, etc. must be clearly given - and remember that there is no such thing as "a standard EA" that would replace the complete description of your algorithm. Moreover, because we are dealing with stochastic algorithms, strong conclusions drawn from experimental results must rely on statistically sound analyzes. There have been to-date many tutorials, workshops and even books describing statistically sound experimental protocols so that no-one in our field can ignore them.

Application results: a commonly accepted idea is that Evolutionary Computation only focuses on the fundamentals of bio-inspired algorithms. This is not at all the case, and application papers describing original work are welcome. A minimal requirement, though, is to carefully present the application domain, assuming that the reader is not familiar with even its basic concepts. But the time has long gone when "I applied EAs to my very difficult problem and it worked"-papers could be published. So, the paper must contain strong evidence that the use of Evolutionary Computation resulted in break-through results. Such "success stories" are of course reviewed by experts in the application domain, i.e. outside our usual reviewers pool. But we also strongly encourage submission of methodological papers, where the specificities of the real-world problem led to significant algorithmic improvements that could possibly be generalized to other areas ...provided that the experiments demonstrating those improvements follow the above recommendations.

Because reviewers are a scarce resource, submitted papers that fall short on some of the issues above will be rejected without entering the usual journal review process.

Further Guidelines:

  1. Before submitting a paper, always check whether the material presented is worth publishing in our high-impact journal. Always keep in mind that your contribution must exceed significantly the contents of conference contributions.
  2. Check for adequate citations. That is, citations must adequately reflect the current scientific knowledge of the topic considered.   Relevant scientific work published in Evolutionary Computation should be cited. However, overly large bibliographies must be avoided.
  3. When using text or ideas from other papers and authors, always acknowledge these works by citing the respective works. This is an absolute must. Violating this principle of good scientific practice is regarded as plagiarism and will cause a straight rejection and further actions. Always keep in mind that plagiarism will damage and might ruin your scientific career.
  4. Prepare the paper using LaTeX taking ecj.sty as style file (see Always typeset the paper as you would like to see it in the Journal, i.e., do not separate tables and figures from the text and do not use double-spacing.
  5. The paper must not exceed the 30 pages limit. Exceptions (e.g. survey paper) must be approved by the Editor-in-Chief before submission.
  6. Prepare your submission always as pdf. All fonts must be embedded.
  7. In order to avoid delays in the paper handling and reviewing process, ensure that the file size of the submitted material does not exceed 8MB.

Hans-Georg Beyer
July 2011