Peer review process

  • For authors
  • For reviewers

All submitted manuscripts are peer-reviewed according to the following procedure:

Initial review: The Editor-in-Chief evaluates each manuscript to determine if its topic and content is suitable for consideration by the journal. Manuscripts that do not meet minimum criteria are returned to the authors within one week of receipt. This is in the best interest of the authors who could then decide to either correct the problems or to submit the manuscript to a more appropriate venue, avoiding delays from a lengthy review process that would nonetheless lead to rejection.

Peer review: Manuscripts that pass the initial review are assigned to an Associate Editor, who selects several referees based on their expertise in that particular field. Each manuscript is reviewed by at least two referees under a double-blind peer review process, where both the referees and the authors are kept anonymous. Referees are asked to evaluate the manuscript based on its originality, soundness of methodology, impact to design research, and relevance to design practices. To facilitate timely publication, referees are asked to complete their reviews within one month. After collecting the referees’ reports, the Associate Editor makes a recommendation on the acceptability of the manuscript to the Editor-in-Chief. The authors have the opportunity to receive comments made by reviewers and make corrections according to the final decision (“Revisions Required”, “Resubmit for Review”).

Recommendation: Based on the referees’ comments and the Associate Editor’s recommendation, the Editor-in-Chief makes a final decision on the acceptability of the manuscript and communicates to the authors the decision, along with referees’ reports.

Timely Review

Reviewers are therefore kindly asked to complete their reviews within 2 months. If more time is needed, reviewers should contact the editor promptly.

The final decision can be “Accept Submission”, “Revisions Required”, “Resubmit for Review”, “Resubmit Elsewhere”, or “Decline Submission.” A revised manuscript should be re-submitted within 3 months of the decision. It will usually be returned to the original referees for evaluation.

Why articles may be rejected

Professor David Phillips (University of Oxford), former Editor of the Oxford Review of Education, has offered the following explanations of why articles are rejected:

  • The article is not ready; it is only a draft.

  • The article is too parochial (it will not appeal to a wider, international audience).

  • The article is written in poor English (if English is not your first language, seek help).

  • The manuscript is poorly prepared.

  • The article is too short or too long (check the article length specified in author guidelines).

  • The article has been submitted to the wrong journal (the material will not be relevant to the readers – check the aims and scope of a journal before submitting to it).

  • Nothing new is stated or found.

  • The article is under-theorized.

  • The article is under-contextualized.

  • It is not properly a journal article and would be better suited to another form of publication.

Double-blind Review

The journals employ the double-blind peer review process, where both reviewers and authors remain anonymous throughout the review process.

Criteria for Publication

For a manuscript to be published in the journal, it must meet four criteria:

  1. Originality
  2. Soundness of methodology
  3. Importance of research
  4. Relevance to the practices

Timely Review

Reviewers are therefore kindly asked to complete their reviews within 2 months. If more time is needed, reviewers should contact the editor promptly.

Honest and Polite

After each round of the review, review reports are sent to the author(s) and all reviewers of the manuscript under consideration. It is important for a reviewer to be honest but not offensive when providing comments. Review reports with opinions expressed in a kind and constructive way will more effectively persuade the authors on the merit of the review.

Writing the Review

The purpose of the review is to provide the editors with an expert’s opinions on the quality of the manuscript under consideration. A good review report should identify both the strengths and weaknesses of the paper and should also provide constructive and specific comments on how to improve the paper. If the reviewer believes that the paper is not suitable for publication in the (название журнала), the review report should provide brief but sufficient information that enables the author(s) to understand the reasons for the decision.

Suggested Format

The following format is suggested for preparing the report:

  1. Summary and Recommendation. What is the purpose of the paper? Is the paper appropriate for publication in the International Journal of Design? What are the main contributions of the paper? Are the contributions sufficiently significant? Are the methods or findings sufficiently novel? Are the results relevant to design practice? What are the major weaknesses of the paper? What is your recommendation for this paper and why? If the paper is unacceptable in its present form, does it show sufficient potential to ask the author(s) for resubmission?

  2. Detailed Comments on Methodology and Conclusions. Is the method of approach valid? Is the execution correct? Does the paper provide adequate acknowledgement of prior research? Do the data support the conclusions? If not, what other data are needed? Does the paper offer enough details so that the research could be reproduced? Should the authors be asked to provide supplementary methods or data online? It would be very helpful to provide page numbers to the parts of the paper to which the comments apply.

  3. Detailed Comments on Readability. Is the title appropriate? Is the abstract an accurate and useful summary of the paper? Is the paper clearly written? If not, how can it be improved? Can the paper be shortened? Are the tables and figures easy to understand? Does the paper contain typographical or grammatical errors?Again, it will be helpful to provide page numbers to the parts of the paper to which the comments apply.


Reviewers should treat the contents of the manuscript under review as strictly confidential, not to be disclosed to others prior to publication. A reviewer should not use or share with others material from a manuscript he/she has reviewed. Nor should a reviewer distribute copies of a manuscript under review, unless it has been made public.

Conflicts of Interest

Reviewers are requested to inform the editor of any conflicts of interest in reviewing a manuscript. Such conflicts of interest can occur if the reviewer is asked to referee a paper written by a colleague of the same organization, former or current student, former advisor, or closely-related person. Another type of conflict occurs, for example, when the reviewer is a direct competitor of the author of the paper for a grant. If the conflict is severe, the reviewer should recuse himself/herself.