About the Journal

Focus and Scope

Articles address policy, strategic, operational, experimental, infrastructural, or tool-based aspects of the management, curation, and preservation of digital data and other objects of value to research, cultural heritage, or society in general. The IJDC is open to submissions of various types of article listed below, and considers them for potential publication if they meet review criteria set out below under Editorial and Peer Review Guidelines.

Section Policies

Research Papers Articles in this section describe outcomes of any form of research activity that investigates questions relating to research data management, digital preservation or curation. Papers present a new model or substantial insight supported by significant analysis of evidence. They also describe how to access any data that a reader may need to assess this evidence. 

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Contributions to the Brief Reports and General Articles sections describe approaches to data management and curation challenges, showing how these have been or will be addressed. The challenges and approaches may be policy-related, organisational or technical, or any combination of these.

Brief Reports outline a use case for data management or curation, an architecture or implementation approach, or how a particular community has been involved in improving relevant practices. They may also be a review of existing work in some particular area, whether subject-based or geographical. Summaries of Lightning Talks accepted for the International Digital Curation Conference (IDCC) may be submitted as Brief Reports.

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General Articles cover similar scope to Brief Reports, providing enough detail for a reader to be able to apply the approach described in the article, in a context more familiar to them.
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Conference Papers 
Conference Papers have previously been presented at the International Digital Curation Conference (IDCC). Papers presented at the conference may also be submitted for review as General Articles or Research Papers. 
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Peer Review Process

The time taken to review a submission varies, but the journal aims to complete peer reviews within six months. Further guidance on review criteria is detailed under the Editorial and Peer Review Guidelines.

The IJDC operates a double-blind peer-review process for submissions sent for review in the Research Paper and General Article categories, i.e. reviewers are not made aware of the identities of authors and vice versa.  However a single-blind process applies to IDCC Conference Papers submitted for further review in these categories.  Conference Papers, having already been subject to peer review of an extended abstract, undergo only editorial review. Brief Reports currently undergo editorial review for compliance with the journal’s ‘focus and scope’ as described above,  and with the editorial guidelines applicable to them. We intend to extend peer review to this section in future issues 

Publication Frequency

IJDC is published once per year on a rolling basis, with each issue normally opening in August or September.

Open Access Policy

This journal provides immediate open access to its content on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports a greater global exchange of knowledge.

This journal’s open access policy is in line with UK research funders’ policies.

Authors are not charged any APCs (Article Processing Charges) or other publication fees.

Copyright Notice

Work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) licence.

Editorial Board

The Editor-in-Chief, Kevin Ashley, Digital Curation Centre, is assisted by an Editorial Board consisting of the following members:

  • Alex Ball, University of Bath
  • Anthony Beitz, Monash eResearch Centre
  • Susan Borda, University of Michigan
  • Christine Borgman, Department of Information Studies, University of California
  • David Britton, University of Glasgow 
  • Peter Buneman, School of Informatics, University of Edinburgh
  • Adrian Burton, Australian Partnership for Sustainable Resources
  • Andrew Charlesworth, Centre of IT and Law, University Of Bristol
  • Sayeed Choudhury, Johns Hopkins University
  • Birte Christensen-Dalsgaard, Danish State Library
  • Euan Cochrane, Consultant
  • Simon Coles, University of Southampton
  • Louise Corti, UK Data Archive
  • Simon Cox, University of Southampton
  • Patricia Cruse, University of California
  • Michael Day, British Library
  • David De Roure, University of Southampton
  • Matthew Dovey, Jisc
  • Adam Farquhar, British Library
  • Caroline Gardiner, University of Bristol
  • Stephane Goldstein, Research Information Network
  • Stephen Grace, University of East London
  • Mark Hahnel, Figshare
  • Lorna Hughes, Centre for e-Research, Kings College London
  • Jane Hunter, The School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, University of Queensland
  • Paul Jeffreys, University of Oxford
  • William Kilbride, Digital Preservation Coalition
  • Carl Lagoze, Information Science, Cornell University
  • Brian Lavoie, OCLC
  • Julia Lane, National Opinion Research Center (NORC), University of Chicago
  • Bryan Lawrence, British Atmospheric Data Centre
  • Michael Lesk, Department of Library and Information Science, Rutgers University
  • Herve L'Hours, UK Data Archive
  • Joan Lippincott, Coalition for Networked Information (CNI)
  • Clifford Lynch, Coalition for Networked Information (CNI)
  • Liz Lyon, University of Pittsburgh
  • Bob Mann, Institute for Astronomy, University of Edinburgh
  • Julie McLeod, University of Northumbria
  • Bill Michener, University of New Mexico
  • Reagan Moore, School of Information and Library Science, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Heike Neuroth, University of Göttingen
  • Maureen Pennock, British Library
  • Sam Pepler, British Atmospheric Data Centre (BADC)
  • Hans Pfeiffenberger, Alfred Wegener Institute
  • Andy Powell, Eduserv Foundation
  • Rob Procter,University of Warwick
  • Andreas Rauber, Vienna University of Technology
  • Robin Rice, University of Edinburgh
  • David Rosenthal, Stanford University
  • Seamus Ross, University of Toronto
  • Sally Rumsey, Oxford University
  • Chris Rusbridge, Consultant
  • Anna Shadbolt, University of Melbourne
  • Richard Sinnott, National e-Science Centre, University of Glasgow
  • MacKenzie Smith, University of California, Davis
  • Jonathan Tedds, University of Leicester
  • Manfred Thaller, University of Cologne
  • Andrew Treloar, Monash University
  • Bill Underwood, Georgia Tech Research Institute
  • Tyler O. Walters, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
  • Angus Whyte, Digital Curation Centre
  • Matthew Woollard, UK Data Archive, University of Essex
  • Richard Wright, Research & Development, BBC Future Media & Technology


Editorial and Peer Review Guidelines

Any submission to IJDC must have a title and abstract. The article contents must be written using clear language, and should accurately reflect the title and abstract. The article must present a coherently structured argument with sufficient context for the reader, provide conclusions backed up by evidence, cite relevant sources, and offer concrete examples where appropriate.  It must also do at least one of the following: -

- provide results or data of use to the reader

- contribute something new to an existing debate

- provide a solution to a problem, new or existing

- impart experience or findings which assist others

Brief Reports and General Articles must include some evidence that a community’s need for support with data management or digital curation has been met or will be met by the approach described in the report. The article/report may describe an approach to (e.g.) policy adoption or implementation, or evaluate an existing solution. Alternatively it may also describe a use case that fulfils a community need, or a method for engaging  a user community.  

Research Papers must, in addition to the above, present original material that tests a hypothesis, or provides a new model, or offers substantial new insights and understanding of a problem in digital curation, preservation, or research data management.

Conference Papers are published from the International Digital Curation Conference (IDCC) if they have been accepted on the basis of a peer-reviewed extended abstract and presented at the conference.  Papers may alternatively be submitted for review as Research Papers or General Articles

Data Policy

It is a condition of publication of Research Papers that any data used by the authors as evidence for their conclusions must be placed in a repository offering an appropriate degree of assurance about its long-term accessibility. This data may have been collected by the authors or derived from existing sources, and in the latter case the derived dataset should normally be placed in a repository. A metadata record of the repository item must be publicly accessible, and given a permanent and resolvable identifier (e.g., a DOI, Handle, or ARK). A link to this record should be included in the References section of your submission.

The data itself should be made as openly accessible as possible, either by time of publication, or beforehand if a reviewer asks for it. The editors will accept restrictions on access to the data if these are justifiable due to copyright, licence or confidentiality agreements, ethical guidelines, or data protection regulations.

General Articles, Conference Papers, and Brief Reports only require data to be made accessible in a repository if they present any claims or conclusions from data analysis. However, authors must include a verifiable public source of evidence of their described approach for addressing a community need for curation and data management. If the approach has not yet been applied, evidence may take the form of a project page or other information demonstrating support for the approach. 


Publication Ethics and Publication Malpractice Statement

The IJDC is committed to scholarly excellence and dedicated to the advancement of digital curation across a wide range of sectors. To maintain high quality standards, the journal is guided by the following principles.

The editors are responsible for deciding which articles should be published, with ultimate responsibility resting with the Editor-in-Chief. The decisions of the editors are guided by the Editorial Board; in particular, no submission may be published in a peer-reviewed article section without first receiving an acceptance recommendation from at least one member of the Editorial Board. The editors evaluate whether a submission is relevant to a section of the journal based on its intellectual content alone. This includes its compliance with legal requirements regarding libel, copyright infringement and plagiarism. Editors must not evaluate a paper they are an author of.

Reviewers are asked to apply their expertise to judge a submission’s suitability for publication on the appropriate criteria for the type of article. Review comments should offer authors constructive comments on the strengths and weaknesses of their submission, and on how it may be improved to meet the review criteria.  Reviewers are also requested to point out any relevant published work which is not yet cited in the submitted article. Reviewers must not use information received through peer review for personal advantage, or further disclose the submission without authorisation from an editor. Reviewers must disclose any conflict of interest with an author or organisation involved in the work described, and reject the review if advised by the editorial team.  

Authors should ensure that they are submitting original works, and that this includes a list of references to any sources used (including data).   Articles submitted for peer review should not have been published in their current or a very similar form before, other than as a pre-print in a repository or as a conference paper with limited circulation beyond the conference attendees. Submitting the same manuscript to more than one journal concurrently constitutes unethical publishing behaviour and is unacceptable. 

Any financial support for the work should be identified in an acknowledgements section. All the authors identified with the submission must have significantly contributed to the work.

Authors are obliged to participate in the peer review process and accept Editors’ decisions on its outcomes. Should authors discover a significant error or inaccuracy in their submission, they should inform the editors promptly.

Papers and articles submitted to the IJDC remain confidential until published. Papers and articles not accepted for publication are never used for other purposes without the express written consent of the author. A submission not accepted for publication as a Research Paper may at the editors’ discretion be peer reviewed as a General Article if it conveys information of value to the readership.

Take Down Policy

We make every effort to ensure that published content does not infringe any person's rights, or applicable UK laws.

Should you discover content in this journal that you believe to be illegal, or infringes any of your statutory rights, you may contact Edinburgh University Library who will review the complaint.

On receipt of your complaint, the Scholarly Communications Team will:

  1. Make an initial assessment of its validity
  2. Acknowledge receipt of the complaint by email
  3. For all but spurious complaints, cease access to the item that is subject to complaint
  4. Refer the complaint to the University's Legal Advisor for comment and advice
  5. Seek to verify your identity and authority as complainant.

When the Service Manager has verified the authenticity of your complaint and has been advised that it is ostensibly legitimate, the article will be removed from public access, leaving behind the article abstract.

If the Legal Advisor confirms that it does not breach any law then the item will be reinstated.

Please contact:

Scholarly Communications Team, Edinburgh University Library
Floor F East, Argyle House
3 Lady Lawson Street

Email: edinburgh.diamond@ed.ac.uk

Please note the Library is staffed 9-5pm Monday-Friday

Privacy and Consent Policy

The data collected from registered and non-registered users of this journal falls within the scope of the standard functioning of peer-reviewed journals. It includes information that makes communication possible for the editorial process; it is used to inform readers about the authorship and editing of content; it enables collecting aggregated data on readership behaviours, as well as tracking geopolitical and social elements of scholarly communication.

This journal’s editorial team uses this data to guide its work in publishing and improving this journal. Data that will assist in developing this journal platform (Open Journal Systems – OJS) may be shared with its developer Public Knowledge Project (PKP) in an anonymized and aggregated form, with appropriate exceptions such as article metrics. The data will not be sold by this journal or PKP nor will it be used for purposes other than those stated here.

Registered users

Users who register with this journal, including authors and peer reviewers where applicable, consent to having the personal information being stored in the University’s journal hosting platform (OJS) and processed by the platform and journal editorial teams.


Authors who make a submission to this journal consent to the personal information they supply as part of the submission being stored in the University’s journal hosting platform (OJS) and processed by the platform and journal editorial teams. Authors who make a submission have the responsibility to ensure that all contributors have read this Privacy and Consent policy and consent to having their personal information that is supplied as part of the submission process being stored in the University’s journal hosting platform (OJS) and processed by the platform and journal editorial teams. Authors published in this journal are also responsible for the human subject data that figures in the research reported in the journal.

Website visitors

The University’s journal hosting platform (OJS) collects anonymised usage log data, including IP addresses, pages visited, date visited, browser information, and geographical data. This information is not used to identify visitors personally and it is not used for any purpose other what is described here. The platform also uses cookies to manage session history and provide a better user experience – more details can be found below.

Rights of the Individual

Those involved in editing this journal seek to be compliant with industry standards for data privacy, including the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) provision for “data subject rights” that include (a) breach notification; (b) right of access; (c) the right to be forgotten; (d) data portability; and (e) privacy by design. The GDPR also allows for the recognition of “the public interest in the availability of the data,” which has a particular saliency for those involved in maintaining, with the greatest integrity possible, the public record of scholarly publishing.

All users whose details are stored in the University’s OJS installation can exercise their rights of the individual, as they are detailed in the GDPR.

If you have a user account and wish to have it deleted, please email ijdc@ed.ac.uk.


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