Author Guidelines

Our Mission

MIT Sloan Management Review leads the discourse among academic researchers, business executives, and other influential thought leaders about advances in management practice, particularly those shaped by technology, that are transforming how people lead and innovate. MIT SMR disseminates new management research and innovative ideas so that thoughtful executives can capitalize on the opportunities generated by rapid organizational, technological, and societal change.

Our Readers

  • Monthly Online Readership: 211,000 unique visitors and 492,000 page views
  • Quarterly Journal Circulation: 27,000 (total readership 64,200)
  • 82% are business executives
  • 77% of readers have a master’s or doctoral degree
  • 36% are top management (founder, owner, CEO, president, chairman)
  • 17% are management consultants
  • 14% are academics

What We Want

We look for the most potent, useful, and directly applicable new management insights and translate them so business executives and management teams can put them to work. While we seek manuscript submissions within a wide range of management disciplines, we have a particular interest in research and analysis that demonstrates the role of technology in transforming the practice of management.

We’re looking for great new ideas with an emphasis on “new.” If you have an observation on a mainstream management trend of the moment, MIT SMR isn’t the right place for that. We continue to look for the next transformative management ideas and methods. If that’s what you have to offer, and you want to share your discoveries and insights with the best of the best, we welcome your article submission.

MIT SMR began publication in 1959 as a scholarly journal. Today, MIT SMR remains a trusted and highly respected source of valuable management information guiding thoughtful executives and business leaders.

MIT SMR’s content consists of

  • Research-based, full-length feature articles that translate the best academic ideas and thought leader insights into practical wisdom for leaders;
  • Shorter articles for our Frontiers section that deliver new insights on how technology is transforming the practice of management;
  • Big idea initiatives, representing multi-year, research-based programs exploring the latest advances in disruptive topics that are changing the way we all work, live, and innovate;
  • MIT SMR’s frequently updated blog, which features fresh thinking across a range of topics;
  • Online-only articles, interviews, videos, and other digital content related to topics of interest to our audience.
  • NEW: We have launched a book series co-published with MIT Press.

Submission Guidelines for Articles

All article submissions must follow these guidelines:

  1. All submissions must be entered through our online submissions interface. We do not accept articles submitted by email, fax, or physical mail. No phone calls, please.
  2. All articles should be submitted as Word documents (.doc or .docx files). No PDFs, please.
  3. Submissions intended as full-length feature articles for MIT SMR should not exceed 5,000 words, including references, tables, and figures, but excluding research methodology.
  4. Submissions intended as shorter-length articles for MIT SMR’s Frontiers section should range from 1,000 to 2,000 words, including references, tables, and figures.
  5. Submissions other than full-length features and shorter-length articles should identify the appropriate topic. For example, a blog or case study proposal submitted for a Big Idea initiative should designate the Big Idea topic, such as Sustainability, Data & Analytics, or Digital Business.
  6. When applicable, please include a research methodology section.
  7. Include the name, address, phone number, affiliations, and email for all authors. This information should be included on the title page and in the cover letter.
  8. Authors should be prepared to agree to a statement that the paper has not been published elsewhere and will not be sent to another publication of any kind unless it has been declined by MIT SMR.
  9. Endnotes and references must follow the format below.
  10. Authors should be prepared to assign copyright to MIT SMR upon acceptance.

Article Proposal Guidelines

Article proposals should include a clear description of the article’s purpose, its core thesis, and the evidence to support it, a specific description of value the article will deliver to our audience of business professionals, and a short summary of the research upon which the article will be developed.

Most article proposals range from 1 to 5 pages.

We will respond to article proposals as quickly as possible. Any indication of initial interest based on a proposal should not be taken as a sign of commitment to publish.

Article proposals should be submitted via the same process described for submissions using the Article Proposals option via our online submissions interface.

Book Proposals

MIT SMR is partnering with MIT Press to publish a book series focused on management’s digital future.

Download Book Proposal Guidelines (PDF)

Your prospectus should include the following:

1. Brief Description

In one or two paragraphs, describe the work, its rationale, approach, and pedagogy.

2. Outstanding Features

List briefly what you consider to be the outstanding, distinctive, or unique features of the work.

3. Competition

Consider the existing books in this field and discuss their strengths and weaknesses, individually and specifically. This material is written for reviewers and not for publication, so please be as frank as possible. You should describe how your book will be similar to, as well as different from, the competition in style, topical coverage, and depth. If significant books are now available, you should explain why you choose to write another book in this area. Please mention all pertinent titles, even if they compete only with a part of your book.

4. Audience

For whom is the book intended (the lay public, professionals, students, etc.)?

In what discipline or disciplines?

Is it primarily descriptive or quantitative, elementary or rigorous, etc.?

Prerequisites, if any (mathematical level, any applicable)?

5. Market Considerations

What kind of person will buy the book, and why? What new information will the book give them? What is your estimate of the total market for the book?

If you are aware of professional organizations or if you have contacts that would be useful in promoting the book, please mention them.

6. Status of the Book

What portion of the material is now complete?

When do you expect to have your manuscript completed?

What is the planned length of the book (double-spaced typed pages)?

How many and what figures (drawings, half-tones, charts, etc.) do you plan to include?

7. Annotated Table of Contents

The purpose of this TOC is to help readers understand the structure and content of the manuscript. Please include a paragraph or two (or a detailed outline) describing each chapter.

8. Sample Chapters

A proposal to be sent out for review should give reviewers a general sense of what the book will cover and the writing style. Sample chapters are often a good way to accomplish this. Chapters need not be in final form, but they should be relatively polished and free of grammatical errors. If you are submitting multiple sample chapters, they need not be in sequence. Many authors include the introduction and a body chapter in their sample.

If preparing one or two sample chapters is not possible, please provide more detail about each chapter in your annotated TOC. You may also provide a previously published paper on a similar topic as an example of your writing style.

What Happens Next

We understand that your ideas are important, and we intend to respond to them in a timely fashion. MIT SMR will acknowledge receipt of your article or proposal immediately upon submission. After that, submissions will be reviewed internally and may be sent out for peer review. Please allow two to three weeks’ response time after initial submission.

If your submission is approved, it will be assigned to an editor. Because most of our readers are business executives, we work with authors to ensure that research-based articles with complex technical ideas have the greatest possible influence on actual management practice. We work collaboratively, but we do edit and rewrite substantially in order to reach our primary audience.

Endnotes Style

Although scholarly publications often do, we do not identify references by date and author’s last name in parentheses in the text, followed by a bibliography at the end of the article. Instead, we ask that authors place in the text superscripted numbers that refer to a list of endnotes assembled at the end of the article. These endnotes should be presented in our style (see samples below).

Each enumerated endnote may contain several related items. It may be possible to group several citations or explanatory notes that occur in a single paragraph under one number.

We always use the latest version of “The Chicago Manual of Style” (CMS) as our guide for endnotes, but because we adhere to the “Associated Press Stylebook” for everything other than endnotes, there are some exceptions:

Do not spell out the first names of authors in endnotes.

Do not italicize book or magazine titles. Enclose book titles in quotation marks.

Do not italicize magazine names or place them within quotes.

Other AP style conventions apply as well. For example, the AP abbreviates most months when used with a specific day (Jan. 1, 2004; but January 2010).

As a rule of thumb, AP trumps Chicago, and our AP-approved dictionary is the online Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary for spelling, or you can use the equivalent print edition, which is Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary (but please always use the most recent edition of the print version).

Books

G. Hollenback and W. Vestal, eds., “Developing Leaders at All Levels” (Houston: American Productivity and Quality Center, 1999). J. March and H.J. Simon, “Organizations,” 2nd ed. (New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1966), 4-13.

Usage note: “The Chicago Manual of Style” advises against the use of op. cit. and loc. cit. (See 15.256, p. 583, in CMS.) If another page from a previously cited book is mentioned several endnotes later, follow the short-title approach: March, “Organizations,” 23.

Usage note: The use of ibid. is acceptable when referring to a single work cited in the endnote immediately preceding.

Article Cited in Anthology; Chapter Cited in Book

M. Shaw, “Communication Networks,” in “Advances in Experimental Social Psychology,” ed. L. Berkowitz (New York: Academic Press, 1964), 131-153. S.M. McKinnon and W.J. Bruins, Jr., “Information for the Longer View,” chap. 3 in “The Information Mosaic” (Boston: Harvard Business School Press, 1992).

Newspapers

W. Robbins, “Big Wheels: The Rotary Club at 75,” New York Times, Sunday, Feb. 17, 1980, sec. 3, p. 3. “Poverty in the U.S.,” International Herald Tribune, Sept. 29, 2000.

Journals

D. Kenny and J.F. Marshall, “Contextual Marketing: The Real Business of the Internet,” Harvard Business Review 78 (November-December 2000): 119-125. T.J. Allen and S. Cohen, “Information Flow in R&D Labs,” Administrative Science Quarterly 14 (December 1969): 12-19. M.C. Jensen and W.H. Meckling, “The Nature of Man,” Journal of Applied Finance 7, no. 2 (1994): 4, 15-19. “GM Powertrain Suppliers Will See Global Pricing,” Purchasing 124, no. 2 (Feb. 12, 1998): 10-11.

Popular Magazines

S. Spencer, “Childhood’s End,” Harper’s, May 1979, 16-19. E. Neuborne, “E-Tailers, Deliver or Die,” Business Week, Oct. 23, 2000, 16. “To Have and To Hold,” Economist, June 16, 2001, 9-11.

Internet Sources

Usage note: Internet sources are those that exist solely online. A print publication that has an internet incarnation is not considered to be an “internet source.” D. McCullagh, “ACLU Loses Digital Copyright Battle,” April 9, 2003, news.com. “Toyota Expanding China Links,” April 9, 2003, edition.cnn.com. A. Huffington, “Corporate America’s ‘Most Wanted’,” April 2, 2003, www.salon.com.

Working Papers

N. Repenning and J. Sterman, “Capability Traps and Self-Controlling Attribution Errors in the Dynamics of Process Improvement,” working paper 4372-02, MIT Sloan School of Management, Cambridge, Massachusetts, June 2002, http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=-320380. McKinsey & Co. Inc., “Succeeding at Cross-Border Alliances: Lessons From Winners,” working paper, London, 1991. D. Ready, “Developing Global Capability – Project Overview,” working paper, International Consortium for Executive Development Research, Lexington, Massachusetts, June 1997.

White Papers

“The Road to Recovery,” white paper, Sibson Consulting Group, New York, November 2001, p. 2.

Dissertations

J.P. Voges, “Supply Chain Design in the Volatile Semiconductor Capital Equipment Industry” (Ph.D. diss., MIT Sloan School of Management and MIT Department of Mechanical Engineering, 2002), http://theses.mit.edu.

Forthcoming Books

M. Tushman, “Managing Innovation and Change” (New York: McGraw-Hill, in press).

Forthcoming Articles

M. Tushman, “An Information Processing Approach,” Academy of Management Review, in press.

MIT Sloan Management Review Special Style:

Multiple Citations in One Reference
G. Farris, “Managing Informal Dynamics in R&D,” Harvard Business Review 64 (January-February 1986): 5-11; and F. Andrews and G. Peters, “Personnel Psychology” (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1986).

No Author Specified

“Federal Express Uses a Three-Level Recovery System,” Service Edge (December 1990): 5. “Poverty in the U.S.,” International Herald Tribune, Sept. 29, 2000.

Papers and Presentations at Meetings

J. Donehey and G. Overholser, “Capital One” (presentation at the Ernst & Young Embracing Complexity Conference, Boston, Aug. 2-4, 1998). J. Kluge, “Simply Superior Sourcing” (paper presented at the Fifth International Annual Purchasing and Supply Education and Research Association Conference, Eindhoven, Netherlands, April 2, 1996).

Case Studies

R.M. Kanter, “FCB and Publicis (A): Forming the Alliance,” Harvard Business School case no. 9-393-099 (Boston: Harvard Business School Publishing, 1993).

Organization, Association, or Corporation as Author

International Monetary Fund, “Survey of African Economies,” vol. 7, “Algeria, Mali, Morocco, and Tunisia” (Washington, D.C.: IMF, 1977).

Government Reports

Securities and Exchange Commission, “Annual Report for the Securities and Exchange Commission for the Fiscal Year” (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1983), 42.

Personal Communications

D.B. Johnson, interview with authors, Nov. 11, 1997.