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DHQ Special Issues

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DHQ is changing its policies concerning the submission, review, and acceptance of special issues, in response to an increasing volume of submissions and special issue proposals. The goal of these changes is to enable the journal to focus its efforts on a smaller number of special issues overall, while ensuring that the process of selection remains fair and transparent. Special issue proposals that were already accepted at the time of this change are unaffected and will be published as planned.


DHQ invites proposals for special issues that focus on topics germane to DHQ's subject areas. A special issue might be a thematic collection on a particular topic or research problem. If the special issue arises from an event such as a conference, the proposal must make clear how the submissions cohere around a specific theme; DHQ no longer accepts special issues with a purely event-based focus. DHQ also invites proposals for language-specific special issues as part of a pilot program to diversify DHQ's coverage of languages other than English.

Each special issue has one or more guest editors, who work with a designated DHQ editor to ensure the quality and coherence of the issue. Special issues sometimes occupy an entire regular issue of DHQ, but more commonly they are a subsection of a regular issue. Special issues may include materials from any of the categories DHQ publishes, including articles, case studies, “issues” pieces, and editorial introductions. All materials submitted are reviewed following DHQ’s standard policies for peer review. DHQ reserves the right to decline any submitted material that is inappropriate or of insufficient quality.

There are two special issue proposal deadlines each year, on July 30 and January 30. Proposals will be reviewed by the DHQ editorial board. Review will take into account the relevance and intellectual significance of the theme, the quality of any materials submitted (such as drafts or extended abstracts), the qualifications of the special issue editors and authors in relation to the proposed topic, and the feasibility of the issue given DHQ’s production and workflow constraints.

To propose a special issue, please send a proposal including the following information to submissions@digitalhumanities.org:

  • A rationale for the special issue, including a description of the theme and some explanation of how it is relevant to DHQ and why it is timely
  • A list of authors and titles (if known), or a description of the principles on which articles will be solicited. If a CFP was issued, or will be issued, the text of the CFP should be included. If available, abstracts or draft articles may be included.
  • The anticipated submission date for articles
  • The name(s) of the guest editor(s)
  • The number and genre of materials to be submitted (e.g. articles, editorials, case studies, etc.)
  • Any constraints that would make publication on or by a certain date essential

Language-Specific Special Issues

DHQ has begun a pilot series of language-specific special issues, with the goal of increasing the journal's capacity in handling submissions in languages other than English. Articles for these issues will be published in the original language, with abstracts in both English and the original language; articles may also be translated into English or other languages. Each of these issues gives the journal an opportunity to recruit reviewers in additional languages, whom we can draw on to review future submissions in those languages. Proposals for special issues in this series may be submitted at any time and considered separately from our regular special issue process. The CFPs for the initial issues in this series are available in our CFP archive.

Submission, Review, and Revision Process

Authors contributing materials for a special issue should upload their submissions via DHQ's submission page. Authors who have not previously submitted materials to DHQ will need to register. The submission form will request the following information:

  • The title of the article (please also include the name or code of the special issue; the guest editor will provide this)
  • Author's name, institutional affiliation, email address, and bio
  • Short abstract for the article
  • Any images to be used in the article. These should be submitted as separate files, not embedded in the article. It is the author's responsibility to secure any required permissions and pay any associated costs for the use of copyrighted image material.

All materials will go through DHQ's regular peer review process, unless an alternative method of peer review is agreed upon as part of the special issue proposal.

Once the peer review process is complete, the DHQ editor assigned to the issue will advise the guest editor of any revisions that are necessary, and the guest editor will coordinate the revision and resubmission process.

Once the final revised versions of materials are received, they will be passed into the DHQ production workflow, including copyediting, proofreading, encoding, authorial preview, and publication.