Copyright Assignment Form Smj

Author Guidelines

NIH Public Access Mandate
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Author Guidelines

Editorial Statement
The Strategic Management Journal seeks to publish the highest quality research with questions, evidence and conclusions that are relevant to strategic management and engaging to strategic management scholars. We receive manuscripts with a diverse mix of topics, framings, and methods, and our acceptances reflect this diversity.

More specifically, the Strategic Management Journal seeks to publish papers that develop and/or test theory, replicate prior studies, explore interesting phenomena, and evaluate the many methodologies used in our field. SMJ also publishes studies that demonstrate a lack of statistical support in a particular sample for specific hypotheses or research propositions. We welcome a diverse range of researcher methods and are open to papers that rely on statistical inference, qualitative studies, conceptual models, computational models and various kinds of mathematical models.

The SMJ Co-editors assign submitted manuscripts to Associate Editors based on the expertise of editors and the need to balance workload among the editors.

Guidelines Regarding Empirical Research in SMJ

Reporting Results of Statistical Analyses

SMJ no longer accepts papers for publication that report or refer to cutoff levels of statistical significance (p-values). In statistical studies, authors should report either standard errors or exact p-values (without asterisks) or both, and should interpret these values appropriately in the text. Rather than referring to specific cutoff points, the discussion could report confidence intervals, explain the standard errors and/or the probability of observing the results in the particular sample, and assess the implications for the research questions or hypotheses tested.

SMJ also now requires in papers accepted for publication that authors explicitly discuss and interpret effect sizes of relevant estimated coefficients.

As of January 1, 2016, new submissions that do not conform to these policies will be returned to the authors for revision prior to review. The SMJ editorial on “Creating Repeatable Cumulative Knowledge in Strategic Management” (2016, available online at the SMJ Wiley Online website prior to publication) provides more detailed explanation of these policies.

Replication Studies and Studies that Report “Non-results”

SMJ publishes and welcomes submissions of replication studies. Additional guidelines will be provided in the SMJ special issue on replication.

SMJ publishes and welcomes submissions of studies with non-results. These types of studies demonstrate a lack of statistical support in a particular sample for specific hypotheses or research propositions. Such hypotheses or propositions should be straightforward and logical. Studies should be conducted rigorously and assess the robustness of the non-results, such as robustness to alternative measurement, statistical specifications and estimation methodologies.

Causal Inference
strongly supports research that seeks to address interesting and important questions in strategic management that involve complicated causal processes. SMJ recognizes that statistical analyses relevant to these questions may raise the issue of endogeneity. If relevant, authors should acknowledge this issue in submitted manuscripts, and make a good faith effort to address it. In some cases, causal inference may be impossible, but statistical correlations, especially if used to rule out some alternative hypotheses or mechanisms, may still be of interest. The SMJ editorial on “Quantitative Empirical Analysis in Strategic Management” (2014, volume 35: 949-953) provides more detailed explanation.

Data Snooping and P-hacking
strongly disapproves of data snooping and p-hacking practices in empirical research. Authors of submitted papers should not search databases for statistically significant coefficients with the intention of subsequently formulating hypotheses that fit the significant coefficients. Authors also should not adapt experimental designs with the primary intention of producing statistically significant results. In addition, authors of submitted papers should address the material significance (magnitude) of the results, in addition to statistical significance.

Open Practice Initiatives

Recognizing the importance of research transparency and data sharing to cumulative research, SMJ encourages authors to share the data supporting the results in their study by archiving them in an appropriate public repository. In partnership with the non-profit Center for Open Science (COS), SMJ will award qualifying authors an Open Practice badge recognizing their contributions to the open science movement.

The Open Data badge recognizes researchers who make their data publicly available, providing sufficient description of the data to allow researchers to reproduce research findings of published research studies. Qualifying public, open-access repositories are committed to preserving data and keeping them publicly accessible via the web into perpetuity. SMJ is making the FIVES Project data repository ( available to either store the data and documentation or provide links on the FIVES website to the data and documentation on other open access websites. Other example repositories include the Open Science Framework (OSF), the various Dataverse networks, and others listed at the Registry of Research Data Repositories ( Personal websites and most departmental websites do not qualify as repositories.

There are, of course, circumstances in which it is not possible or advisable to share data publicly. For example, there are cases in which sharing participant data could violate confidentiality, or the data were acquired under non-disclosure agreements, or the data were acquired from private vendors or other entities that prohibit sharing their data. In these cases, the authors may provide an explanation of such circumstances in the Alternative Note section of the disclosure form. The information the authors provide will be included in the article’s Open Practices note.

As of October 2017 authors will have an opportunity at the time of manuscript submission and again at the time of acceptance to inform themselves of this initiative and to determine whether they wish to participate. Applying and qualifying for the Open Data badge is not a requirement for publishing with SMJ, but this badge is further incentive for authors to participate in the open science movement and thus to increase the visibility and transparency of their research. Participating authors will be asked to complete a disclosure form after their manuscript is accepted; the badge cannot be awarded without the completed disclosure form.

More information on badges to acknowledge open practices can be found at the OSF Wiki here.

Initial Manuscript Submission
All manuscripts considered for submission must be sent to SMJ’s online submission site, In case of questions, please contact:

Sara DiBari
SMJ Managing Editor
Wiley Publishing
350 Main Street
Malden, MA 02148

Authors must also supply:

  • Permission Grants (PGs) are needed at the time of submission if the manuscript contains extracts, including illustrations, from other copyright works (this includes material from online or intranet sources). It is the author's responsibility to obtain written permission from the owners of the publishing rights to reproduce such extracts using the Wiley Permission Request Form , available for downloading from the SMJ Web site.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been previously published and should not be submitted for publication elsewhere while they are under consideration by SMJ .

To be sure that manuscripts move through the review process smoothly and quickly, we ask authors to observe basic formatting and style requirements when submitting manuscripts. Submissions that do not follow SMJ guidelines may have to be returned for revision and resubmission in order to ensure the timely flow of manuscripts through the editorial process.

We suggest that you circulate your manuscript among colleagues before submitting to SMJ , and make revisions based on their thoughtful suggestions. The reviewers should not be your first readers.

If your paper is accepted, the author identified as the formal corresponding author for the paper will receive an email prompting them to login into Author Services; where via the Wiley Author Licensing Service (WALS) they will be able to complete the license agreement on behalf of all authors on the paper.

For authors signing the copyright transfer agreement

If the OnlineOpen option is not selected the corresponding author will be presented with the copyright transfer agreement (CTA) to sign. The terms and conditions of the CTA can be previewed in the samples associated with the Copyright FAQs below:

CTA Terms and Conditions

For authors choosing OnlineOpen

If the OnlineOpen option is selected the corresponding author will have a choice of the following Creative Commons License Open Access Agreements (OAA):

Creative Commons Attribution License OAA

Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License OAA

Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial -NoDerivs License OAA

To preview the terms and conditions of these open access agreements please visit the Copyright FAQs hosted on Wiley Author Services and visit

If you select the OnlineOpen option and your research is funded by The Wellcome Trust and members of the Research Councils UK (RCUK) you will be given the opportunity to publish your article under a CC-BY license supporting you in complying with Wellcome Trust and Research Councils UK requirements. For more information on this policy and the Journal’s compliant self-archiving policy please visit:

To be sure that manuscripts move through the copyediting process please observe the following guidelines:

Title Page: Please list the full names, titles, and affiliations (with complete addresses) of all authors, including e-mail, telephone, and fax information on the title page. A running head of your choice (a short title of up to 60 characters to be used at publication) should appear on the title page as well. For indexing purposes, kindly include five (5) keywords that describe your paper.

Abstract: Please supply a one-paragraph abstract of up to 125 words for all articles, research notes, and commentaries. This, as you know, is a precise summary of your entire paper, not just your conclusions, and must be able to stand alone, separate from the rest of the paper. SMJ policy is that no citations to other works are used in the abstract.

Acknowledgements: The names of any sponsors of your research, including grant numbers, and/or people you would like to thank, may be included in an acknowledgements section that should appear immediately before your list of references when your paper is accepted for publication. When submitting a paper, acknowledgements should be included ONLY on the title page and not in the text of the paper.

General Style:
The suggested limit for paper size is 35 pages, which includes figures and tables and no more than 40 pages in total length. References should be single-spaced to conserve manuscript space. The language of the journal is American English. Please be sure that your paper is double-spaced and uses a 12-point readable font and 1-inch margins on all sides. Your text, including titles of sections, must be left-justified. Research notes should not be over 20 pages in length including title page and abstract, text, figures, tables and references.

• Headings and subheadings are flush with the left-hand margin and the first line of the initial paragraph appearing under each is also left-justified. Other paragraphs in a section are indented.
• In subheadings, only the first word is capitalized.
• Do not number sections.
• Do not use ampersands (&) unless it is a commonly used expression (e.g., R&D), part of a universally known product (e.g., M&Ms), or included in a company name (e.g., Standard & Poor’s).
• Commas appear before the final ‘and’ (also ‘or’) in a series.
• Double, rather than single, quotation marks are used.
• Percent is spelled out in regular text, but a % sign is used in parenthesized text and figures.
• En dashes (–) rather than hyphens (-) are used to denote a range, for example, 1996–2000; pages 124–155.
• Em dashes (—) rather than hyphens (--) are used to separate a thought or phrase from the surrounding sentence. The sentence should be able to stand alone if the material separated by em dashes were removed.
• Commas and periods always appear inside quotation marks, even if those quotation marks are used to signify the special definition of a word or phrase.
• Commas are used in numbers of 1,000 or higher.
• Indicate in the text where tables and figures are to appear, for example, ‘Insert Table 1 here.’
• Numbers one to nine are spelled out and numbers 10 and above appear as numerals. The exceptions are when numbers refer to ratings, code numbers, or begin a sentence.
• If a sentence begins with a number, the number must be spelled out. It is usually easier to rephrase the sentence.
• Footnotes, rather than endnotes, are incorporated into the text.
• The journal uses italicized rather than underlined text.
• Blocks of long quotations are indented and single-spaced.
et al. is always italicized.
• Spell out all abbreviations at first use in the body of the article and use abbreviated forms thereafter, for example, return on investment (ROI). If an abbreviated form is used only once, it should be spelled out. This is for the benefit of readers, including students, some of whom may not be familiar with the meanings of all abbreviations.
• A zero (0) always appears in numbers less than 1 (e.g., 0.15, not .15). This holds true for tables and figures as well as within the text and footnotes.
• Example of SMJ style: In the United States; U.S.-based; in the U.S. economy.
• Appendices are placed after references. If there is only one Appendix, no number is needed after it (i.e., Appendix 1).

Figures and tables: Please do not incorporate your figures and/or tables into the text of your article other than a separate line, such as ‘Insert Table 1 here,’ where appropriate. Figures and tables should appear at the end of the manuscript after the references section. Do not embed other programs, such as PowerPoint, into the article.

• Figure numbers and titles appear centered below the figure, while Table numbers and titles appear left-justified above the table. Only the first word of a title is capitalized.
• In tables and figures, only the first word in column and row titles is capitalized.
• Within tables and figures, a zero (0) always appears in numbers less than 1 (e.g., 0.15, not .15).
• Table values are to be aligned on the decimal except where values differ widely, such values should be centered (this can, for example, apply to the N, R2, and F values in the final rows of a table).
• You may have your figures published in color; however, Wiley may charge you to do so.

Reference and citation style:SMJ uses the author-date style of citation. Citations in the text appear as name, date within parentheses, and listed alphabetically at the end of the paper. When a cited work has four or more authors, the form (main author et al., year) is to be used. Three or fewer authors should be written out at the first text citation and et al. used thereafter (italicize et al., whenever used). When reference is made to more than one work by the same author(s) published in the same year, identify each citation in the text in the following manner: (Collins, 2005a, 2005b). Online citations should end with the date of access. Please be sure that cited works that are chapters in a book or articles in a magazine include page numbers. References should contain titles and subtitles. If necessary, cite unpublished or personal work in the text, but please do not include it in the reference list.

All references must have a corresponding citation in the text and vice versa.

Examples of correct referencing style:


Badaracco JL. 1991. The Knowledge Link: How Firms Compete Through Strategic Alliances. Harvard Business School Press: Boston, MA.

Bleeke J, Ernst D (eds). 1993. Collaborating to Compete: Using Strategic Alliances and Acquisitions in the Global Marketplace. John Wiley & Sons:New York.

Book Chapters:

Bowman EH, Singh H. 1990. Overview of corporate restructuring: trends and consequences. In Corporate Restructuring, Rock L, Rock RH (eds). McGraw-Hill: New York; 1–16.

Collis D. 1996. Organizational capability as a source of profit. In Organizational Learning and Competitive Advantage, Moingeon B, Edmondson A (eds). Sage: London, U.K.: 139-163.

Journal Articles:

Bagozzi R, Phillips L. 1982. Representing and testing organizational theories: a holistic construal. Administrative Science Quarterly27(3): 459-489.

Grant, RM. 1996. Toward a knowledge-based theory of the firm. Strategic Management Journal, Winter Special Issue 17:109-122.

Jensen M, Zajac EJ. 2004. Corporate elites and corporate strategy: how demographic preferences and structural position shape the scope of the firm. Strategic Management Journal25(6): 507–524.

Working Papers:

Cohen MD, Nelson RR, Walsh JP. 2000. Protecting their intellectual assets: appropriability conditions and why U.S. manufacturing firms patent (or not). NBER working paper 7552, National Bureau of Economic Research, Cambridge, MA. Available at:

Child J, Yan Y. 1999. Predicting the performance of international alliances: an investigation in China. Working paper, Chinese Management Centre, University of Hong Kong.

Papers Presented at Meetings:

D'Eredita M, Misiolek N, Siow J. 2005. States of mind as stages of team development: making sense of strategies for building a virtual team. In Proceedings of the 5th Annual Hawaii International Conference on Business, Honolulu, HI. Available at:

Misiolek N. 2003. Knowledge management and the corporate university: insights from the knowledge-based view of the firm. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Academy of Management, Seattle, WA.


BusinessWeek. 2005. All that glitters. 16 October: 22–24.

Online Sources:

Van Brundt J. 2001. The many facets of co-development. Signals Magazine 19 May: 1-6. [6 June 2005].

SMJ welcomes quality manuscript submissions from both Singapore and overseas authors. To facilitate a smooth publication process, authors who are considering submitting their manuscripts to SMJ are strongly encouraged to read the following guidelines.


To submit a manuscript, please go to

If you do not have an SMJ author account on the Editorial Manager, create an account and log in with your username and password. Before uploading your manuscript onto the Editorial Manager, ensure you have all the documents described in the manuscript preparation section.

A one-time, non-refundable Article Processing Charge (APC) is required upon submission. Waiver of the APC applies only to Singapore Medical Association members in good standing, members of the editorial board, and authors whose articles are invited by the editor. In addition, recipients of the SMJ Reviewer Recognition Award from the previous year will enjoy waiver of the APC for the next calendar year (e.g. recipients of SMJ Reviewer Recognition Award 2016 will enjoy waiver of APC for articles submitted between January and December 2017).  

Note: The APC is a non-refundable administrative fee; payment of the APC does not guarantee acceptance of the manuscript.

When the APC has been successfully processed and the submission meets the initial screening, a tracking number will be emailed to the authors, who will be able to track the status of their manuscript online.

All material submitted for publication is assumed to be submitted exclusively to the SMJ unless stated otherwise.


Editorial Review Process

All submitted manuscripts must go through rigorous Editorial checks before they are sent for peer review. The manuscripts are checked for grammar & language, plagiarism and format. Manuscripts that do not pass the initial checks will be promptly rejected without peer review. 

Peer Review

Manuscripts that are submitted to the SMJ undergo a double-blinded peer review and are managed online. Please suggest 3-4 individuals who are especially qualified to review this work. Suggested reviewers must not be affiliated with the same institution(s) as any of the authors, or have any potential conflicts of interests in reviewing the manuscript.  

Decisions on manuscripts are made in accordance with the 'Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals' (


A request for revision does not guarantee that the paper will be accepted. Reviewers may feel that the paper meets most criteria for publication, but needs clarification on certain areas. Authors are given approximately 12 weeks to return their revised manuscript. Note that if the revision is not received after 6 months, the Editorial Office will consider the paper as ‘withdrawn’.

Two copies of a revised paper should be submitted: an anonymised, tracked copy and a clean copy. A point-by-point reply to reviewers’ and editorial comments should exclude any identification of the authors or institutions, as this letter may be sent to the reviewers for consideration during the second round of peer review.


The journal policy is generally to publish the articles chronologically according to the acceptance dates. Each accepted manuscript will be formatted in accordance with the journal style. The Editor retains the right to determine the style, and if necessary, edit and shorten any material accepted for publication.

When the galley proof is ready, the Editorial Office will send the proof to authors to check for its completeness. Confirmation or comments from the authors must be given within 48 hours of receipt of the proof, in order to avoid delays in publication of the manuscript. Authors should note that major alterations to the text will not be entertained at this stage and they are responsible for all statements made in their work, including changes made by the Editorial team and authorised by the corresponding author.

Do note that the Journal does not publish manuscripts without the author's approval of the galley proof and a completed Copyright Form. For this reason, it is vital that a working email address and fax number are provided to the Journal office. Once the author gives approval for publication, the Editorial Office will not be held responsible for any mistakes thereafter. 

Note that with effect from June 2012, the editorial office has stopped sending a complimentary copy of the journal to overseas authors in view of the rising cost of international postage. Instead the corresponding authors of all manuscripts published in the SMJ will receive a high-resolution soft copy of the article upon publication. 

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The SMJ Supplement is a compilation of articles that deal with a related issue or topic, and is published as a separate issue of the Journal and funded by sources other than the Journal's publisher. The SMJ Supplement is an effective means of disseminating scientific findings and conference material to the relevant target audience and providing translation of research findings. For more information on publishing a supplement, please contact Ms Li Li Loy at or +65 9634 9506.

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For all submissions, begin each section on a new page and number the pages consecutively, beginning with the title page. Use Times New Roman 12-point font, double-spaced throughout. Do not insert any headers, footers or footnotes

The following documents are required for each submission, in this order:

  1. Title Page
  2. Manuscript (anonymised version)
  3. Manuscript (non-anonymised version)
  4. Tables (if any)
  5. Figures (or illustrations) (if any)
  6. Copyright Assignment Form (signed by all the authors)

To preserve the anonymity of patients and other participants, all potentially identifying information must be removed from images, charts, graphs, tables and text before the manuscript is submitted to the Editorial Office.

In the manuscript, each of the following sections should begin on a new page:

  1. Abstract and Keywords
  2. Text
  3. Acknowledgements (if any)
  4. References
  5. Figure legends

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Title Page

The title page should be an individual document, uploaded separately, that provides:

  • the title of the article, which should be concise and informative;
  • the full name of all authors; indicate in parenthesis the family/last name and initials, e.g. James Taylor SMITH [Smith JT]. Romanize names in Cyrillic (Russian, Bulgarian, etc.), Greek, Arabic, Hebrew, or character-based languages, such as Chinese and Japanese.
  • the designations/appointments (e.g. Registrar, Consultant, Professor) of all authors;
  • a maximum of two academic degrees (e.g. MBBS, PhD) of each author;
  • the full address of all authors’ institutions, including postal/zip code;
  • the departments of all the authors;
  • a working telephone number (preferably of the corresponding author’s institution/clinic), including the country code;
  • a working fax number (preferably of the corresponding author’s institution/clinic), including the country code;
  • an email address that the author checks regularly, so that all correspondences will be received.

All persons designated as authors should qualify for authorship. Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to justify authorship. Kindly refer to the section on authorship in the Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals, available at: The Editor may require authors to justify the assignment of authorship.

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Manuscript (2 different copies)

Your submission should consist of versions of your manuscript – 1 anonymised and 1 non-anonymised.

Anonymised version–this version should not contain any information that may identify the authors and their respective institutions. This includes the explicit mention of persons and institutions. The Title page and Acknowledgement section should not be included in this version.

Non-anonymised version– this version should include the title page. Explicit mention of information that may identify the authors and their respective institutions is permitted. This version of the manuscript will be the one used in preparation for print, if it is accepted for publication.

Abstract and Keywords

The Abstract should be an informative synopsis/summary of your manuscript. There are 2 kinds of abstracts: Unstructured and Structured.

Structured – Organise the abstract according to the following headings:

(1)  Introduction – states the purposes/aims of the study/investigation
(2)  Methods – describes the selection of study subjects/experimental animals, observational and analytical methods
(3)  Results – provides specific data and its statistical significance, if possible
(4)  Conclusion – succinct emphasis of new and important aspects of the study or observations

No additional subheadings are required. The word count should not exceed 250 words.

Unstructured – There is no need to divide the abstract into different sections, unlike the Structured abstract. The word count should not exceed 150 words.

Below the abstract, provide a maximum of 5 keywords (or short phrases) that will assist in the cross-indexing of the article. These will be published with the abstract.

Tip: check and confirm that the keywords are the most relevant terms found in the title or the Abstract, and are preferably also listed in the medical subject headings (MeSH) list of Index Medicus found in

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Main Text

  • Text should be set in font Times New Roman, size 12 with double-line spacing. 
  • Add line numbers in the margin alongside each line of the document. 


  • Abbreviate "Figure" as "Fig.", e.g. Fig. 1, Fig. 2.
  • Number the figures consecutively in Arabic numerals (e.g. Fig. 1, Fig. 2) in the order of their first citation in the text.
  • Submit the images as TIFF/JPEG files with a minimum resolution of 300 DPI and minimum dimension of 1,000 x 1,000 pixels. Colour images should be submitted in CYMK format, instead of RGB format.
  • For drawings and graphs, state the most important points leading to the desired conclusion.
  • A separate file should be submitted for each Figure or Figure part (Authors are advised to keep backup files of all images).
  • For Line Figures – freehand and type-written lettering are not acceptable.
  • Letters, numbers and symbols should be clear and even throughout, and of sufficient size so that when they are reduced in size for publication, each item will still be clearly identifiable.
  • If a Figure has been previously published, acknowledge the original source and submit written permission from the copyright holder to reproduce the material.
  • Authors’ names and affiliations should not appear on the images.
  • All Figures/Figure-parts relating to one patient should have the same Figure number.
  • Symbols, arrows or letters used in photomicrographs should contrast with the background.

Provide appropriate descriptions for every figure/figure-part provided. Include the type of image (e.g. Axial CT image, contrast-enhanced sagittal T1-W MR image) and succinctly point out what the reader should note from each image. Identify the method of staining and original magnification. (e.g. Haemotoxylin & eosin, × 100), where appropriate.

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Submit all tables either in (a) Microsoft word or (b) Microsoft excel format only. Tables should be:

  • Number the tables consecutively in Roman numerals (e.g. Table I, Table II, Table III) in the order of their first citation in the text
  • Provide a brief title, which should be shown at the top of each table
  • Place table explanations in the footnotes of the table
  • Explain all non-standard abbreviations in the footnotes to the tables
  • Identify statistical measures of variations such as Standard Deviation (SD) and Standard Error of the Mean (SED)
  • Obtain permission for publication before submission of the manuscript and acknowledge fully if data from another published source is used

Do not:

  •  Use internal horizontal and vertical rules
  •  Use too many tables in relation to the length of the text

Abbreviations and Symbols

  • The full term for which an abbreviation or acronym stands should precede its first use unless it is a standard unit of measurement
  • In general, symbols and abbreviations should be those used by British Chemical and Physiological Abstracts
  • Weights, volumes, etc. should be denoted in metric units
  • The use of S.I. Units (International System of Units) is encouraged

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The Vancouver style of referencing is adopted by the Journal. The detailed style of the different types of citations can be found here.

It is the authors’ responsibility to check all references very carefully for accuracy and completeness. Authors should avoid using abstracts as references. “Unpublished observations” and “personal communications” may not be used as references; if cited, a letter (from the person quoted) granting permission must be submitted. Subject to editorial approval, the person quoted will be cited in parentheses in the text and not in the reference section.


State contributions that need to be acknowledged, but do not justify authorship. Acknowledgeable contributions include (not in exhaustive order) general support by a Department Head or Chairman, technical help, and financial and/or material support (including grants). Mention conflicts of interest, if any.

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The format for the text varies depending on the type of article. The list of article types and their respective formats are as follows:
Original Article, Review Article, Editorial, Commentary, Pictorial Essay, Medical Education, and Letter to the Editor. Medical Education and Pictorial Essay are typically Continuing Medical Education (CME) articles.

Original Article

An original article is a report on the clinical objectives and analytical process, as well as a discussion on the implications of the results of a study. 

It should consist of a Structured Abstract (≤ 250 words) and Keywords (≤ 5), and text organised according to the IMRaD format:

  • Introduction
  • Methods
  • Results
  • Discussion
  • References

There should be no more than 8 authors.

Review Article

A review is usually an invited article written by an expert, providing a critical analysis and recent information on a given specialty. Unsolicited reviews should be discussed with the editor (email: before submission.

(i) Narrative Review 
A narrative review should be no more than 4,000 words, with an adequate number of references to support the discussion. It should consist of an Unstructured Abstract (≤ 150 words) and Keywords (≤ 5), and text organised according to the following headings:

  • Introduction
  • Relevant section headings of the author’s choosing
  • Conclusion
  • References

(ii) Systematic review and meta-analysis
Systematic reviews and meta-analyses should be no more than 4,000 words. References should comprise all studies included in the analysis, as well as others that are relevant to support the discussion. The article title should accurately reflect the topic under review (e.g. Corticosteroid injection for adhesive capsulitis in primary care: a systematic review). The article should consist of a Structured Abstract (≤ 250 words) and Keywords (≤ 5), and text organised according to the following format:

  • Introduction
  • Methods
  • Results
  • Discussion
  • References

Pictorial Essay

This is a teaching exercise with the message in the figures and their legends. The emphasis is on the quality of imaging features and the utility of the message. It should consist of an Unstructured Abstract (≤ 150 words) and Keywords (≤ 5), and text organised according to the following headings:

  • Introduction
  • Section headers of the author’s choosing
  • References

Pictorial essays should not exceed 2,000 words, with 20 figures or 30 figure-parts, and should contain no more than 15 references.



An editorial is an authoritative commentary on topics of current interest or that relate to articles published in the same issue. Editorials may be about any important topic related to medicine, health or health policy. An editorial is usually commissioned; unsolicited editorials should be discussed with the editor (email: before submission. Editorials should be about 800 words long with references limited to only those that support the discussion.


A commentary is a short article describing an author’s personal experience of a specific topic, or accompanying an original article in the same issue. It should outline the various viewpoints that exist. A commentary is usually commissioned; unsolicited commentaries should be discussed with the editor (email: before submission. It should consist of an Unstructured Abstract (optional) and Keywords, and text organised according to the following headings:

  • Introduction
  • Relevant section headings of the author's choice
  • References

Commentaries should be about 1,000-1,500 words, with no more than 2 figures/tables. References should be limited to only those that support the argument. 

Medical Education 

(i) Clinics in Diagnostic Imaging
These are short case studies reporting relatively rare but well-recognised radiological abnormalities, or having radiological images of educational value. The illustrative material should be of interest to general clinicians and trainees in various specialties. It should consist of an Unstructured Abstract (≤ 150 words) and Keywords (≤ 5) appended at the end of the article, and text organised according to the following headings:

  • Case Presentation
  • Image Interpretation
  • Diagnosis
  • Clinical Course
  • Discussion
  • References

There should be no more than 15 references and a maximum of 4 authors.


(ii) Electrocardiography Case (ECG Case)
These are short, instructive case studies reporting on the ECGs of patients presenting with symptoms relating to the heart. The illustrative material should help general clinicians and trainees in the various specialties to interpret the ECG diagrams and to know what to look out for in order to make an accurate diagnosis. It should consist of an Unstructured Abstract (≤ 150 words) and Keywords (≤ 5) appended at the end of the article, and text organised according to the following headings:

  • Clinical Presentation
  • ECG Interpretation
  • Clinical Course
  • Discussion
  • References

There should be no more than 15 references and a maximum of 4 authors.

(iii) Practice Integration & Lifelong Learning Series (PILL Series)
These are short, instructive case studies reporting on a typical primary care clinic consultation in the form of a case vignette. The article includes a short introduction of the disease entity, key pointers on patient management, important updates, and a condensed explanation on the rationale and supporting evidence behind the practices. It should consist of an Unstructured Abstract (≤ 150 words) and Keywords (≤ 5)appended at the end of the article, and text organised according to the following headings:

  • Case Vignette
  • Section headers of the author’s choosing 
  • Take Home Messages
  • Closing Vignette
  • References

There should be no more than 15 references and a maximum of 4 authors. 

Note: The PILL Series is currently an invited article. To propose a topic and a writing team (typically comprising at least 1 family physician and relevant specialists/nurse practitioners/allied health professionals), email the editor at

Letter to the Editor

Letters to the Editor should either offer objective and constructive criticism of published articles, or discuss matters of general scientific or medical interest to readers of SMJ. This is also a forum for authors to publish concise articles such as reports of novel cases.
Note: No abstract is required. Standard formal letter format is recommended.

(i) Comments on SMJ published articles/authors' reply

  • 250 words (main text only)
  • 1 small table or figure (optional)
  • Up to 5 references
  • Comments may be submitted via email to

(ii) Discussion on new topics/novel cases

  • 450 words (main text only)
  • 1–2 small tables or figures (optional)
  • Up to 5 references
  • Letters reporting novel cases may exceed these limits at the discretion of the editor

Continuing Medical Education (CME)

Accepted articles that are deemed to be especially educational will be chosen by the Editor to participate in the CME programme organised by the Singapore Medical Council (SMC). Upon acceptance of selected articles, the authors will be requested to provide 5 four-stem multiple-choice questions (MCQs) with true/false answers based solely on the contents of the article. The format of the MCQs may vary for some articles, subject to the Editor's approval.

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SMJ is an English language journal. The use of British English is strongly encouraged. The Editorial Office does not offer major copyediting services; therefore, it is the author's responsibility to ensure that the English language is thoroughly revised before submitting the work for publication. Note that the Editorial Office reserves the right to reject a manuscript if the use of language is deemed too poor.

Authors whose native language is not English are strongly encouraged to seek assistance from a competent linguist who is familiar with medical terminology in order to ensure that the words used convey the intended meaning both accurately and clearly.  

Recommended English editing services
PHOEBUS, Medical and Technical Editing Services

Contact Person: Jeff McCaull, Manager, P.O. Box 772, Eastsound, WE 98245, USA< Fax: 786-524-3353, 


Please be advised that all manuscripts submitted to the Journal will be screened for plagiarism using CrossCheck powered by iThenticate. 

The Editorial Office has encountered cases where authors have copied entire paragraphs from previously published articles. Although these passages were duly cited and credited with reference sources derived from the articles, this has been found to be unacceptable by Journal standards. Authors are required to paraphrase allreference citations in their own words. This is necessary to prevent any future misunderstandings regarding plagiarism.

In the rare case where a certain citation would lose its original meaning and essence if paraphrasing is attempted, the Journal requires authors to enclose the citation in quotation marks (“ ”) to indicate that it is a direct quote from the source. However, excessive usage of such quotation marks is discouraged and should be utilised only when absolutely necessary. 

In order to stem out this unethical practice of plagiarism, the Journal adopts a zero-tolerance stance toward wholesale copying of published works. Failure to comply with these instructions will result in the outright rejection of manuscripts without peer review.

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This is meant to be a platform/starting point from which the readers will delve into the work being presented in the text.

  • State the purpose of the article.
  • Summarise the rationale for the study or observation.
  • Provide only strictly pertinent information and references.


  •  Review the subject extensively.
  •  Include data or conclusions from the work being reported.

Describe precisely your selection of the observational/experimental subjects (patients, participants or laboratory animals, including controls). Identify the following in sufficient detail, so that there is enough information to reproduce the method presented in the study: 

  • Methods
  • Procedures
  • Apparatus. Please list the manufacturer, city, state and country of all generic drugs, equipment and software used in parenthesis. e.g. KnifeLight® instrument (Stryker Iinstruments, Kalamazoo, MI, USA).
  • All drugs and chemicals used. Please list their generic names, manufacturer’s name, city and country in parenthesis, e.g. (Zoloft, Pfizer Inc, New York, NY, USA), and their exact doses and routes of administration.
  • Statistical methods should also be described in this section. There should be enough detail to enable a knowledgeable reader to verify the reported results.
  • Where possible, quantify findings and present them with appropriate indicators of measurement error or uncertainty (such as confidence intervals [CI]).
  • Avoid relying only on statistical hypothetical testing, such as the use of p-values, which fail to communicate important quantitative information.
  • Discuss the eligibility of experimental subjects.
  • Provide details about randomisation.
  • Describe the methods for, and success by, blinding of observations.
  • Report treatment complications.
  • Report losses to observation (e.g. dropouts from a clinical trial).

Please cite the standard source (this could be a manual, textbook, or the like), with page numbers stated in the References section, for the study design and statistical methods, instead of citing it directly from the article.

Specify any general-use computer programmes used (e.g. SPSS Inc, Chicago, IL, USA). Avoid the non-technical use of technical terms in statistics; words like "random", "significant", "correlations" and "sample" should not be used unintentionally. Define statistical terms, abbreviations and symbols.


  • Present your results in a logical sequence in the text, Figures (if available) and Tables (if available).
  • Use Graphs as an alternative to Tables, if the Tables require too many columns/rows.
  • Present the results of your statistical study/analysis.
  • Emphasise or summarise only the important observations.


  • Repeat all the data found in the Figures and Tables in this section.

In this section, emphasise the new and important aspects of the study, and the conclusions that follow from them.

  • Include the implications of the findings and their limitations, including the implications for future research.
  • For new or substantially modified methods, please also adequately evaluate their limitations.
  • Relate the observations to other relevant studies, and cite their reference sources. [e.g. A study in 2000 done by Lin et al also supports this conclusion.(1)]
  • Link the conclusions with the goals of the study.
  • State new hypotheses when warranted, but clearly label them as such.
  • Include recommendations when appropriate.


  • Repeat in detail, the data or other material given in the Introduction or the Results section.
  • Make statements or draw conclusions that are not completely supported by your data.
  • Claim priority and allude to work that has not been completed.

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For enquires on submission and peer-review, please contact the Editorial Office:
Singapore Medical Journal
Singapore Medical Association
2 College Road
Alumni Medical Centre Level 2
Singapore 169850
Tel: +65 6223 1264

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