RTU Requirements for Launching Scientific Journals

RTU Press in cooperation with the university’s faculties currently publishes eleven peer-reviewed scientific journals in the fields of architecture, building science, computer science, energy and electrical engineering, engineering economy and management, transport and mechanical engineering, and history of engineering. The RTU Press publishes only peer-reviewed Open Access journals. At this time, four RTU journals are included in the SCOPUS and Web of Science databases. A summary of RTU Press scientific article publications is as follows: 286 scientific articles  in 2020; 231 scientific articles in 2019; 226 in 2018; 222 in 2017; 175 in 2016; and 169 in 2015. Journal management is organised according to OJS (Open Journal Systems). Below are listed the journals that the RTU Press currently publishes:

  • The Baltic Journal of Road and Bridge Engineering (SCOPUS & WoS)
  • Economics and Business
  • Baltic Journal of Real Estate Economics and Construction Management
  • Environmental and Climate Technologies (SCOPUS & WoS)
  • Electrical, Control and Communication Engineering (WoS)
  • History of Engineering Sciences and Institutions of Higher Education (Latvian and English versions)
  • Architecture and Urban Planning (SCOPUS)
  • Applied Computer Systems (WoS)
  • Information Technology and Management Science
  • Complex Systems Informatics and Modelling Quarterly
Procedures to follow when publishing scientific journals:

One of the strategic objectives of Riga Technical University is scientific excellence. Moreover, RTU has the goal of joining the International Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). The RTU Press and its journal editors are committed to developing standards for its scientific publications that meet the requirements of SCOPUS and Web of Science (WoS) databases. These requirements are specified by regulation No 04000-1.1-e/2 of 30.10.2018 that designate how RTU scientific journals are to be published, the responsibilities of the involved academic departments and its editors, and the procedures, processes, and financing rules to be observed. Moreover, RTU Press journals are published according to the Open Access policy.

To our faculties ambitious to publish a scientific journal, we advise them about the challenges of the commitment. If their goal is to appear in SCOPUS or WoS, then the standards are high. The journals that are intended to be included in SCOPUS or WoS databases need to comply with the following basic requirements: the journal must be published regularly, maintain consistent content, use professional level language, when using English, standard English must be used, manage a website in English, deliver clear and concise Aims & Scope, and strive for international recognition. Additionally, we recommend that a journal publishes at least twenty articles per year and observes the ratio of twenty percent for national authors and eighty percent for international ones. We also expect that the journal editors are experts in the journal topics and hold leading positions in academic and scientific institutions. Scientific creativity and innovations are important; therefore, articles should reflect new perspectives in research directions. Plagiarism is totally unacceptable and will disqualify a journal’s application. Moreover, it is necessary for applicants to observe that the requirements for SCOPUS and WoS change over time; and therefore, journal editors are responsible to continuously update their information.  Additionally, a journal must be at least two years old when applying for inclusion in the SCOPUS and WoS databases. However, a journal’s acceptance for database inclusion is determined by the SCOPUS and WoS and not by the RTU Press. A link to the SCOPUS submission form is included: SCOPUS submission Pre-evaluation form.

Keywords: SCOPUS, Web of Science, COPE, Crossref, ORCID, AEUP, ISSN, e-ISSN, EPUB, OJS, DOI, Open Access, Plan S, CC BY 4.0, DOAJ, EBSCO, scientific excellence, international recognition, reputation, citation.

Essential requirements for scientific journals

The following specifies the requirements for publishing high impact journals that will be taken seriously by international experts and scientists. (1) The journals articles must be peer-reviewed with the type specified. Most articles published are one of the following types: Original Research, Review Articles, Short reports or Letters, Case Studies, Methodologies. (2) The preferred written language of the articles is English, but if the article is not in English, at a minimum the titles must be in English as well as the abstract, the key words and the affiliation of the author(s). (3) Published articles must include a systematic reference list that is consistent, reflects the requirements of the journal and follows recognized scholarly standards. (4) The publishing frequency is defined. (5) The journal has an English language website that describes the ethics of the publication, how issues of conflict of interest are resolved as well as penalties for malpractice and falsification of data, and how plagiarism is to be prevented. The website will also give instructions to authors and indicate the target audience for the journal. (6) There will be an international editorial board for the journal that will be composed of recognized experts in the field. (7) The authors will be drawn from many nations. (8) The journal will have an internationally recognised ISSN and/or e-ISSN numbers, published articles will have assigned DOI numbers. (9) The content of the articles must be clearly understandable. When written in English it must communicate in standard English that is clear and understandable to international readers. (10) The articles must have significant value and are of interest to international experts. They must be logically structured and of sufficient length and comprehensiveness to make their points clear. (9) Figures, tables, graphs, and illustrations must be consecutively numbered and must be briefly described in the text of the article(s).

Recommendations for the content of the journal’s homepage

The journal’s homepage is a journal’s business card. Take it seriously. The Editor-in-Chief of the journal has the responsibility to keep the information up to date and accurate. The content on the homepage should include:  the journal’s title, description of the target audience, detailed description of the review process, indicate the owner, provide a list of international Editorial Board members, give contact details, explain authors’ rights and journal’s licensing policy as well as information about charges/cost of publishing or if publishing is free. Important is the journal’s ethics code that must be briefly describe as well as the plagiarism policy and how conflict of interest situations are handled. Other important information is the publishing schedule and availability of the journal along with the archiving arrangement. The journal must also describe its business model, marketing tools, and advertisement policy. Additionally, opportunities for pre and post-publication discussion must be provided. Moreover, journal editors must keep informed about recent updates in COPE requirements for transparency in scientific publishing. COPE policy is linked here:  COPE Core Practices.

RTU Press editorial and other services

The RTU Press individualizes services for each journal according to need. The costs are calculated per article. The RTU Press offers journals the following services: literary editing, technical editing, translation, printing, proofing, electronic publishing, archiving, project management, printing costs, administrative services such as contracting, assigning ISSN and/or e-ISSN numbers, DOI numbers and similar services. The following link is to a more detailed description of the services offered by the RTU Press: Description of Editorial & Publishing Services at RTU Press.

Annual evaluation of the RTU scientific journals

Once a year, the RTU Press audits the RTU scientific journals. The following is the evaluation criteria that is used:  the existence of cooperative relationship between RTU Press and the journal’s editors; compliance of the journal with the ethical requirements of COPE in treating infractions such as plagiarism, observation of guest author guidelines, recognition and avoidance of conflicts of interest issues, maintaining a qualitative homepage for the journal and similar issues. Other criteria include: compliance of the journal’s content with the stated guidelines, compliance of the submitted articles with the technical requirements including consistent reference lists, maintenance of master page templates, applying high quality graphics, such as figures, tables, formulas, and similar illustrations. Other points include a documentation system that makes available documents such as a licence to publish, disclosure forms, acknowledgments, updated information on financial transactions, including paid and unpaid bills and other expenses. Finally, the journal must be following the stated publishing schedule.

Arrangements for submitting articles

When preparing the journal for publication, the following documents must be submitted to the RTU Press office: Signed Order Form according to the selected and agreed upon service basket. Each article must be accompanied by: The Licence to Publish; Conflict of Interest Declarations for author, editor and reviewer. Specific forms are available upon request at . Publications submitted to the RTU Press office have to be tested with the iThenticate plagiarism detection software. More detailed information is available about the iThenticate system at: . Journal editors using the Open Journal system (OJS) should inform the manager of publishing projects about the articles to be submitted to the OJS system. It is recommended that when sending articles through e-mail, to create a file name that is clearly linked to the scientific journal and article and indicates the journal abbreviation, year of publication, volume, the issue number if available, and author(s) name.

On the first page of a scientific article, the following basic information must be provided:

the name of the journal;
the title of the article;
the name of the author, the affiliation;
author’s ORCID number (if available);
year of the issue, volume, number, page;
the Digital Object Identifier (DOI);
the date of submission of the article, the date of acceptance of the article;
corresponding author’s e-mail;
the text of the licence used;
the name of the publisher.
In addition, it is recommended to specify: ISSN number, full reference to the article.

Submitting texts, illustrations, stills, graphics, figures, formulas

Please submit articles in Word, Adobe PDF, or LaTeX formats. Preferably use the latest versions of the software. Use the Times New Roman font with a font size of 8 pt to 10 pt for pictures, graphics, and tables. We strongly urge authors to deliver photos, screenshots and images as separate files JPG, PNG or TIFF formats at least 600-700 kB and 300 dpi resolution, diagrams and charts need to be editable in Word or as Excel Charts. Vector graphics are to be submitted as separate files in the software formats in which they were saved, such as EPS. Article files may be archived in a ZIP file.

Equations must be editable and created using the equation editor. Please use either MathType (the preferred option) or build-in Word application for the creation of mathematical notations. Do not employ the equation editor in the body of the text to record variables.

When a specific font is used in an article, ensure that the font style file is available to the Publisher. Units of measurement must be in accordance with the NIST standard (National Institute of Standards and Technology); reference list in Roman script must follow APA, IEEE or another recognized standard; DOI links are applied as defined by Crossref; for drawing up bibliographies, RTU Press recommends that you use the Mendeley tool or the Word built-in reference tool.

Description of Editorial & Publishing Services at RTU Press