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Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.
  • The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).

    If elements of this submission have been previously published, a supplementary document is included giving details of each publication, and indicating how this submission differs and builds upon the research and conclusions contained in the previous work.

  • A biographical note of the author is provided, including affiliation, postal and email contact details, and an ORCID number.
  • The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines and OSLS's Citing and Referencing guidelines (If you have technical problems downloading the file, please contact the Editor). As far as possible, references for documents that can be found online include a link.
  • The abstract is a comprehensive summary of the aims of the research, the methodology or methodologies used and the main findings or contributions to the field.
  • If submitting to a peer-reviewed section of the journal, the instructions in Ensuring a Blind Review have been followed, including removal of all field codes.
  • Once approved, the paper will be included in ESCI, Scopus, OSLS First Online, Dialnet, DOAJ, e-Revistas (CSIC) and CrossRef

Author Guidelines

OSLS publishes articles which make a significant contribution to the understanding and analysis of law as a set of social institutions, processes, practices or techniques, using any methodologies and approaches from the social sciences and humanities.

OSLS publishes, among others, monographic issues of articles resulting from or related to workshops, meetings or other scientific activities, as well as individual papers.

Publication can be in any language, though the main languages are English, Spanish and French. Articles should normally be of 8,000-10,000 words. However, shorter and longer work can be considered if the length is appropriate and justified.

Articles should follow the IMRaD format, and should use the Author-Date system of citation, using the style guidelines developed and owned by the IISL for its journals OSLS and Sortuz. Articles should include a full Reference list. Where an item is available electronically (not in a closed database) please supply the URL link. If more than one link is available for the same document, please provide the DOI link. We do not prescribe particular spelling conventions, but ask you to choose one you consider appropriate and follow it consistently.

Headings and subheadings must be marked with numbers, separated by full stops (i.e. 1.; 1.2.; 1.2.1.), with no more than three numbers.

Articles must include an up-to 150-word abstract and 4-5 keywords. The abstract should summarize the paper's contents, the aims of the research, the methodology used, and the main findings, and highlight the distinctive contribution to its field. If the article is not written in English, please provide a translation into English of the title, abstract and keywords. Note: The submission form is in English - please fill in the Title, Abstract, Key words and other fields in the language in which you have written the paper, regardless if it is other than English.

Please provide a short biographical note, including your current affiliation, postal and email contact data, and a link to your ORCID identification page. If you have not registered for an ORCID identification number, we heartily recommend that you do so. ORCID provides a persistent digital identifier that distinguishes you from every other researcher and, through integration in key research workflows such as manuscript and grant submission, supports automated linkages between you and your professional activities ensuring that your work is recognized. ORCID is a non-profit organization (Learn more on

Ensuring a blind review

Please make sure your paper as submitted ensures a blind peer review; therefore, please remove your name from the paper and replace it with "Author" ("Author A", "Author B" and so on in the case of multiple authors), and remove any personal references from the properties for the file. Include your affiliation and contact information (both professional postal address and email) in the submission form. Likewise, all field codes must be removed prior to submission, including cross-reference codes (Zotero, EndNote, etc.)


Please note that you are responsible for proofreading your article, before submission as well as after acceptance and final submission. Reviewers may suggest stylistic changes or point out mistakes, but we do not proofread articles for form or for content. Please therefore check it carefully for spelling, grammar (see OSLS's and Sortuz's Grammar and Spelling guidelines), and clarity of expression, as well as for correction and consistence of cites and references. If we consider that there is an unacceptable level of mistakes, we will return the article to you. If approved for publication, your paper will be formatted electronically as a Portable Document Format (PDF) file, using the standard layout for papers in the Series. If you prefer to retain your own format for a specific reason, please contact us.

Papers should be submitted as OpenOffice or Microsoft Word (.doc or .rtf) files. Please use Verdana 10-point font, 1.5 line spaced, with italic rather than underlining (except for URLs). Once the paper has been laid out, it will be returned to you for a last revision, before it is definitively published.

Edition and First Online publication

Once the paper has been laid out, it will be returned to you for a last revision, before it is definitively published. As far as possible, articles will be made available as First Online before they are published in the journal. Prior to being published on the First Online section or as Version of Record in the journal, each article will be assigned a DOI number.

The journal may, or may not publish an article in this mode, and, although the journal will aim to do this shortly after copy-edition, the timeframe can vary.

The OSLS First Online versions will be removed from the First Online website upon publication of their VOR, and then replaced by a new set of accepted manuscripts that will thus become OSLS First Online, for a similar period of time.

If OSLS First Online manuscripts are selected to be posted online, they will be so after technical editing, formatting for publication and author proofing. After this publication, further technical editions may be made to correct typos or to improve readability or presentation of the article, but the content will not be edited or modified in any way, except for factual errors that may be detected by the author or by the editor.

These First Online manuscripts are available to everyone and citable by the Digital Object Identifier (DOI). The DOI for the manuscript is persistent for all iterations; in other words, the OSLS First Online manuscript has the same DOI as the final Version of Record that will be published on the OSLS official publishing website. Therefore, it is recommended that authors use this DOI to divulge or cite their First Online published paper.

The same policy guidelines apply as for Accepted Manuscripts. Especially, authors must not share the First Online articles in any other journal, or consider them as apt to be republished - only the Version of Record can be republished in compliance with the journal’s CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 license.

Content Guidelines

OSLS enforces a number of minimum requirements to ensure a pre-review standard. For all submissions, authors must make sure that their text is written in correct academic language, and we recommend that authors who have written the paper in a language other than their native language then have it checked by a native speaker with a good command of academic language use. A paper may be rejected purely on the basis of poor language.

Oñati Socio-Legal Series encourages use of gender-neutral language, which has been proposed to reduce both discrimination and gender stereotyping. We encourage using gender-neutral language that is grammatically correct. When in doubt, reviewers are invited to refer to the editor.

In the case of special issues, in addition to the above mentioned, the following guidelines apply (please see the section about Special Issue Proposals for more information):

  • Topicality, both for empirical context and for theoretical implications of the issue.
  • The funding institutions of the research that constitutes the content basis of the book must be named, and the methodology having informed the research must be stated.
  • Chapters must:
    • Attend to a common set of questions, ideally from different angles
    • Cross-reference: be a tightly-knit work, and a well-argued presentation of a certain topic
  • Senior authors as well as younger scholars, and people of different genders and of a diverse origin will ideally be represented in authorship.

Peer review process

General editors first check that the article meets the quality criteria specified in the Author Guidelines. If they do, the papers are double-blind peer-reviewed by two referees.

For collective special issue submissions, the potential Guest Editors will be invited to propose selected papers or authors to submit papers to OSLS. Editors-in-chief will assess the issue proposal and will decide whether it fits the criteria for publication in OSLS.

Editors-in-chief may decide to include individual articles, related to the main topic of the issue or not, to be published in the same issue; if this is the case, the guest editors will be informed beforehand and offered to mention these articles in the introduction to the issue. In either case, the individual articles will be visually separated from the thematic articles by a different section title.

Editors of the journal can also gather in a single issue a number of articles that, despite being in themselves individual submissions, may fall within a general thematic area, thus strengthening the overall attractiveness of the resulting issue.

In regard to the review process, the Guest Editors will be asked to suggest names of potential reviewers. However, reviewers are always nominated by the OSLS editors-in-chief, advised by the Editorial Board.

Authors are requested to anonymize their paper and to remove their name and references from the document metadata. Reviews are anonymized too. All communication between authors and reviewers is done through the IISL, to ensure anonymity of both authors and reviewers.

Due to its well-established and respected status, OSLS has succeeded at garnering interest in academics from all over the world who are willing and keen to review for us, therefore establishing a large roster of reviewers who, all together, cover all areas of Sociology of Law and contribute to keep up the quality of our journal. OSLS can now attest to an international, diverse and inclusive pool of reviewers from several countries in all continents and continues to appoint or accept new qualified reviewers. Since 2011 until mid-2019, OSLS had received reviews from 1,200 scholars. The average period since reception of an article until publication is 16 weeks.[1]

Reviewers are asked to comment on the following aspects:

  1. Is the paper well organised and structured, does the argument flow well?
  2. Are sources adequately and properly cited, and are the language and expression clear, adequate and appropriate?
  3. Is the paper of sufficient interest and originality to be published in the Series?
  4. Do you have suggestions for revision of the paper:
    • (i) parts which could be shortened or deleted,
    • (ii) arguments or points that need clarification, expansion or development,
    • (iii) important and relevant views or work which the author should take into account, or
    • (iv) for reorganisation of the paper?
  5. Please state whether your suggestions are
    • (i) advice to the author and the paper could be published without checking the revised version
    • (ii) you have suggested specific changes which must be made but a non-specialist could check before publication that the changes have been made;
    • (iii) the paper should not be published unless the revised version is approved by you (or if you are not able or willing to read a revised version, please if possible suggest someone who could); or
    • (iv) the paper should not be published.

In the system, they must choose one of these options:

Accept submission ; Revisions required ; Resubmit for review; Resubmit elsewhere ; Decline submission ; See comments

In case of serious disagreement between reviewers, the editor may make a final decision or nominate a third reviewer.

Based on the reviewers' recommendations, authors will be notified of the review process (Accept submission; accept with minor revisions; resubmit for review; decline submission), including the reviewers' reports and comments.

Authors must revise their papers accordingly in four weeks’ time. A letter explaining the changes made can also be included. Authors are required to respond to critical or disfavourable reviews, by addressing the main points raised by the reviewer.

The reviewers’ recommendations will always be taken in consideration; however, editors will make the final decision on the publication of the paper, and the author will be informed. All the communication will be to the email account used to submit the paper to the journal.

If authors think they will be unable to return a revised paper within the allotted time, they are asked to tell the Managing Editor and to suggest an alternative deadline. If authors do not return a revised paper within the deadline, and they have not communicated with the journal, or do not respond to the journal's attempts for contact, the journal may archive the submission.

[1] Source: Web of Science Master Journal List, September 2021.

Corrections to the Version of Record (“Corrigenda”), Retractions and Withdrawals

We distinguish between major and minor errors.

  • All major errors are accompanied by a separate correction notice. The correction notice will provide clear details of the error and the changes that have been made to the Version of Record (VoR), as well as a DOI link to the corrected VoR. OSLS will take the following steps:
    • Correct the online article;
    • Add a correction notice to the article, clearly detailing the error and the correction made, as well as the location of it in the article;
    • Publish the correction notice as any other journal item.
  • All minor errors will include a footnote on the article detailing to the reader that the article has been corrected. Minor errors do not impact the reader’s understanding of the academic material.
  • All substantive content-related modifications to the version of record must be described in a footnote identifying the changes made to the published article.
  • An article with minor corrections will not be accompanied with a correction notice published separately.

In both cases, the corrected article will replace the previous version of the article.

An erratum (pl. errata) is a formal error in an article as a result of the production process from an original submission to a Version of Record. These do not usually impact the value or reader’s understanding of the academic substance, therefore, they will be amended like minor errors.

A retraction is the withdrawal of an article and its removal from the online website of the journal, as well as the statement informing of this removal and the warning that the article should be considered invalid as a source of knowledge. OSLS will retract articles for reasons related to scientific misconduct including plagiarism, serious errors, and duplicate/concurrent publishing (self-plagiarism).

Authors may withdraw a paper published as First Online by submitting a reasoned request to the journal. Withdrawal requests at this stage will be studied case by case with attention paid to the specificities of the situation and the particular reasons given by the author, and will be granted only exceptionally. Withdrawn papers have not been found to contain fatal errors that invalidate them (retractions).

Self-archiving and Sharing Policy

We distinguish between three types of document depending on its production stage: preprint, accepted manuscript, and Version of Record (published journal article)

  • A preprint is the original work of an author, before or right after submission;
  • An accepted manuscript is the piece of work after incorporating the revisions suggested by the reviewers, and other amendments, additions or changes made by the author;


  • the Version of Record / Published journal article is the final, enriched version of the article, laid out with OSLS’s heading and visual traits, and after having undergone the editorial production process which adds value to it (typesetting, formatting, typography correction, reference formatting, DOI assignation, pagination, publishing, dissemination, and archiving). This is the article that is published as part of its volume and issue, on OSLS’s publishing website ( OSLS has copyright on these elements.

OSLS works on the basic principle that authors always keep copyright on their work, and OSLS always has the right of first publication of articles that are accepted.

In order to reconcile both interests, we have set some simple guidelines on how authors can share their work.


Authors can share their preprint anywhere at any time.

Accepted Manuscript

Authors can share their accepted manuscript immediately:

  • via their non-commercial personal homepage or blog (including,, and similar platforms)
  •  via their research institute or institutional repository for internal institutional uses or as part of an invitation-only research collaboration work-group, ie a closed, non-public repository
  •  directly by providing copies to their students or to research collaborators for their personal use.

We request that authors indicate that it is an accepted article by OSLS whose publication is forthcoming, and to include a link to the OSLS website. We recommend the following formula:

This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced version of an article accepted for publication in Oñati Socio-Legal Series ( following peer review.

Version of Record

OSLS has a CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 Creative Commons license, which allows authors to share their published journal article (also called Version of Record) anywhere immediately after official publication on the OSLS website, as long as the republication is compliant with the CC BY-NC-ND license.

The IISL, as publisher of OSLS, only requests that it is clearly acknowledged that first publication was in OSLS, and that a link with its DOI is included. Authors always keep copyright of their work, so they are free to cite and reproduce parts of their official publication in OSLS without any written authorization from OSLS. The acknowledgment of first publication in OSLS is sufficient and ensures transparency.

OSLS sets no embargo period after a work is published on its official website.

Please check our Copyright Notice for more information.

How to propose a Special Issue

OSLS invites proposals for Special Issues arising from the IISL’s Workshop programme. The call is aimed to scholars who are interested in leading a team of contributors toward publishing a thematic issue about any aspect in the socio-legal field. We are especially interested in issues that address subjects recently not covered in the journal, and their themes shall fall within the field of socio-legal studies widely understood; for more information, please consult the journal Archives. The deadline for sending a proposal is mid-October. The Editor-in-Chief and his/her team will assess the proposals, and each group will receive an answer before the end of that year.

In accordance with its tenets, the journal encourages and especially welcomes proposals from teams with an adequate gender balance, inter-generational dialogue, and diversity of origins. Authors and topics from or pertaining to the Global South or a non-Western origin are especially appreciated.

The proposal should be no more than 1,000 words and should include at least the following points:

  • A working title of the special issue and a paragraph outlining its aims, framework, and a justification for the choice of the topic and how it can appeal to the international and diverse readership of Oñati Socio-Legal Series.
  • A list of confirmed contributors, with short biographical notes, contact details and institutional affiliation, and a draft abstract of their contribution; each of the contributors should have expressed interest in submitting an article for the special issue. Each contributor can author or coauthor more than one article, but the issue must consist of no fewer than 5 and no more than 8 articles, plus an introduction.
  • Names, contact details and short biographical notes of the proposed issue editors. These will work as Guest Editors together with the journal’s managing editor, who reports to the Journal Editors.
  • A draft introduction or a draft paper.

If the proposal is accepted, the Guest Editors and the managing editor will work together on a timescale to ensure that the special issue is published at some point within the next two years. The Guest Editors are encouraged to suggest a realistic and attainable date of the expected submission of all papers to OSLS, considering that papers should ideally have been pre-reviewed by the Guest Editors. Moreover, the Guest Editors must send to the managing editor a list of confirmed contributors and a list of potential reviewers, whom the OSLS Editors may add to those of their choice. From then on, the issue in production will follow the usual procedure that is applied for every issue of Oñati Socio-Legal Series and which is thoroughly explained in the journal policy section.

The special issue editors are responsible for the general contents and quality of the special issue and are expected to preselect contributions and work together with authors before submitting the papers to the journal, in order to ensure that the papers meet the minimum quality, style, and content criteria to be accepted by the journal for external review. Passing the pre-review stage and being accepted as a journal submission does not guarantee final acceptance and publication of a paper. The decision on each paper is ultimately an editorial decision and is made by the journal.

Additionally, OSLS reserves the right to make an Open call for special issue proposals, for scholars who have not coordinated a workshop at the IISL but would like to lead a team of researchers in producing a monographic issue of Oñati Socio-Legal Series. The guidelines for these proposals will be the same as for proposals arising from workshops. Proposals will be assessed individually and applicants will receive an answer accepting or declining the proposal. Proposals received outside of a specific call or outside of deadline will be rejected.

Thematic Articles

Articles about the main topic covered in a Special Issue. Select this option if your paper originates from a workshop held at the IISL, or if it is part of a monographic issue being produced at this journal.

The recommended length is between 8,000 and 10,000 words.

Individual Articles

Individual articles added in a special issue, which may or may not be thematically related to it, and have not been coordinated by the guest editors of the issue but have been included in it as a result of an editorial decision.

The recommended length is between 8,000 and 10,000 words.

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