Journal of the Association for Information Systems

JAIS Manuscript Categories – Information for Authors

Contributing to JAIS

The Journal of the Association for Information Systems (JAIS), the flagship journal of the Association for Information Systems (AIS), publishes scholarly contributions that represent the highest quality in the field of information systems. JAIS particularly welcomes contributions that provide theoretical insights that advance our understanding of information systems and information technology in organizations and society. New insights may include proposing a new theoretical model, challenging or clarifying existing theory, integrating diverse strands of research in information systems so as to advance new concepts and relationships, or developing a compelling argument for the field to develop a new theory. JAIS is inclusive in its coverage of topics, level and unit of analysis, theory, method, and philosophical and research approaches - reflecting all aspects of information systems research globally. For suggestions on building a contribution for JAIS, please see the editorial "What's in a contribution?"

Manuscript Category

Authors interested in the JAIS Promise Review Option should indicate this in their cover letter.

Authors should designate the manuscript category during submission. Please note that it is not currently possible to indicate the different types of categories directly in the review system, and so, the authors are asked to designate the manuscript category in their cover letter.

JAIS has the following manuscript categories:

1. Research Articles

This category is the most general category for manuscripts. It covers a range of genres, including studies involving qualitative and/or quantitative empirical studies, modeling, and design research. If authors are in doubt as to the category that is appropriate for their manuscript, they should submit the manuscript in this category and further explain the nature of the submission in their cover letter.

2.Theory (Senior Editor: Robert Gregory)

The Theory section of JAIS seeks to publish theory articles that advances our understanding of novel IS and digital technology-related phenomena. Submissions are expected to contribute original theory that proposes new concepts/constructs, advances propositions/theoretical insights and/or integrates existing theories into a novel theoretical framework. JAIS Theory papers should be capable of informing a broad range of IS and digital technology studies. Contributions should be grounded in a precise understanding of the phenomenon as well as theoretical perspectives from within or outside the IS field.

3. Literature Reviews (Senior Editor: Guy Paré)

The Literature Review section of JAIS encourages the development of two main genres of manuscripts. The first genre refers to papers which use theory to structure the synthesis of one or several streams of research and then put forward a strategic platform for new research directions. The second genre aims at theory development or theory elaboration. In these papers, the review of the literature informs the development of a new theory or the elaboration of an existing theory. Prospective authors can take a variety of methods and approaches (e.g., realist review, meta-synthesis, meta-ethnography, grounded theory, critical interpretive synthesis) in their attempt to make a solid theoretical contribution. The RTD section will not consider papers which seek only to synthesize, summarize or map a mature or emergent body of knowledge (e.g., narrative, descriptive and scoping reviews) or reviews aimed at theory testing (e.g., meta-analysis). When submitting a manuscript to this section, authors should, in their cover letter, designate the manuscript as such, and nominate Guy Paré as the Senior Editor.

4. Research Perspectives (Senior Editor: Dirk S. Hovorka)

The Research Perspectives category aims to provoke exciting discussion about issues that have a bearing on the community, its organization, and its mission. These papers may question or critique our institutions, our assumptions, our blinders, our disputes, our paradigms, how we define the boundaries of our subject, how we define research domains, what we privilege in our research and what we do not publish, among other things. A Research Perspectives Article may strive to question, observe, understand, and/or explain the objective and socially constructed worlds of information-systems researchers or may provide a philosophical and critical review of the evolution of thought of a senior scholar in the information-systems field, including how the evolution of his or her thought can contribute to the field in ways not previously recognized. Perspective papers should conclude by offering constructive guidance that will help the field to progress and develop.

5. Foundational Research on Novel Digital Phenomena (Senior Editor: Varun Grover)

As digital technology is being enmeshed with various forms of human activities, tools, and contexts, new digital phenomena arise with regularity, challenging IS scholars to gain ever deeper understanding of the transformative nature of digital technology. These new digital phenomena offer opportunities to capture empirical data that require new theoretical perspectives to fully understand. This section of JAIS is dedicated to the empirical study of novel digital phenomenon that either generates novel theory or provides insights that can lay a foundation for future theorization. Such empirical studies might be qualitative or quantitative in nature, but the emphasis of both will be the focus on a new digital phenomenon previously unstudied in major IS journals and the emergence of theory, or pre-theoretical insights, from the data on the phenomenon. Studies that that offer predictions based on analytics conducted on large datasets do not fit this section unless they abstract the results to make a strong knowledge contribution. It is important that the phenomenon being studied not be a trivial manifestation of digital technologies but be substantive, with the potential to be truly transformational. The contribution of this work is based on the novelty and importance of the digital phenomena, the quality of theorizing or pre-theoretical sensemaking, and the foundational knowledge created by the study, describing how it can set a clear direction for future work.

6. Editorial Notes

JAIS editorial notes are essays, commentaries, or reviews written primarily by the JAIS editorial board members. They are typically invited, although we may consider some unsolicited submissions. These editorial notes may point researchers into areas of research that editors feel have been neglected and that are important for the future of the field. They may offer thoughts about the journal’s review policies and practices, how issues of theory development and testing should be addressed in JAIS submissions, and general notes on the disciplinary policies and norms in the information systems field. At least two JAIS editorial board members review each published editorial note.

Manuscript Length

JAIS does not have formal restrictions on length.However, all manuscripts should be written concisely to avoid unnecessary length. Manuscripts that are more than 15,000 words are very likely to receive extra scrutiny from the editors. An approximate guide for Research Perspectives and Editorial Notes is 10,000 words.

Prospective authors for JAIS publication should submit their manuscript double-spaced using Times New Roman 12 pt. All references should follow the American Psychological Association (7th ed.) style. Reviews are double-blind, so the authors' names should not appear in any obvious way within the document. The JAIS Submission Style Guide is an excellent source for authors; Section 6 within the guide contains examples of APA-style in-text citations and references.

Author Information

Articles are to be submitted to the JAIS online review system: http://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/jais.

The official language of the Journal of AIS is English. Therefore all submissions need to be checked and edited for correct English before submission. Submission to JAIS implies the authors' certification that the manuscript is not copyrighted and is not currently under review in any other journal or conference.

The body of the article is restricted to text, tables, and figures and should represent a stand-alone document. This will ensure the widest accessibility even in less technologically endowed environments. Authors can, if necessary, submit text, tables, figures, and appendices in separate files. Links and multimedia supplements should be included in one or more appendices.

To ensure validity of empirical studies and meta-analyses JAIS asks manuscripts which use SEM techniques to provide a full correlation matrix or covariation matrix as a part of the article’s appendix. Editors and reviewers can ask authors to provide a complete dataset during the review for testing and validation of executed statistical analyses. In such cases, authors are expected to provide the dataset as a condition for publishing the article. See JAIS Data Policies.

To avoid any misunderstanding regarding originality of submission, the authors are expected to provide full information about authorship, pre-submission history, earlier related publications and necessary acknowledgements.

Submitting a Cover Letter

Authors should submit a cover letter with their submission. The cover letter should contain the following information:

  1. The manuscript category of submission.
  2. The manuscript's word count, including references and appendices.
  3. The names of 2-3 potential Senior Editor(s) from the JAIS Senior Editor board appropriate to handle the manuscript. Do not recommend anyone as Senior Editor with whom there is a conflict of interest with any author. See point 4 for details on conflicts of interest.
  4. The names of any Senior Editor with whom any of the authors has a conflict of interest. Conflict of interests include: individuals for whom the author has served as an SE on a paper, individuals with whom an author has co-authored in the past 5 years; active co-authors; colleagues from the same university; friends; co-organizers of conference activities in the past 5 years, current, or in the upcoming 3 years; supervisors; supervisees; joint fundee; program manager of funds; co-author on funding application; relative.
  5. A declaration of any closely related research that has been published or submitted for publication elsewhere. Closely related research includes: research by any of the authors that investigates one, or more, of the same central constructs and that has been published in, submitted to, or planned for submission to, another journal or conference; research by any of the authors using the same data set that has been published in, submitted to, or planned for submission to, another journal or conference.
  6. A notification if the paper is a revision of previously submitted paper to JAIS. Only papers that received an invitation for revision (minor revision, major revision, reject/resubmit) may be resubmitted to JAIS. Papers rejected from the journal or from a special issue of the journal are not invited for revision unless specifically mentioned in the Senior Editor’s report.
  7. If disclosures need to be made against point 5 above, then the authors should provide an explanation as to how the current paper offers a contribution over and above that which has appeared before or been submitted for publication elsewhere. For papers that have appeared in a conference proceedings, the authors should explain how they have improved and extended the paper over and above the conference publication.

    If the authors wish, the cover letter may contain a description of the paper’s review path to this point, including other journals the paper has been reviewed at and how many rounds the paper was revised before withdrawal or rejection.

    Important: Please note -- the cover letter should NOT contain suggestions for reviewers.

    Cover letters containing suggestions for reviewers will be returned to authors for removal of the suggestions.

    Note that it is strongly recommended that authors obtain feedback on working versions of a paper before submission. Workshops and conference presentations are an excellent means of obtaining feedback, and information about prior presentations is generally viewed positively.

    Reviews in JAIS are double blind. Authors do not know who reviews their paper, and reviewers do not know the names of the authors. The Senior Editor and the Editor-in-Chief know the names of all involved. Therefore, the authors should write their submission and use references in such a manner as to not reveal their identity.

    Finally, please note that at least one of the authors of any manuscript submitted must be an AIS member.

    Authors should familiarize themselves with JAIS policies for Code of Research Conduct and Copyright.