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Information for Authors

Thinking of publishing in the journals Palaeontology or Papers in Palaeontology? If so please read our guide to publishing within our journals (covering: how to submit a manuscript; initial assessment; editorial decision; production; copyright and open access; offprints).

Publication Policies and Ethics

The Palaeontological Association’s journals, Palaeontology and Papers in Palaeontology, are members of COPE (the Committee on Publication Ethics) and follow the principles and recommendations of COPE. Details of our Publications Policies and Ethics are available on the Publication Policies and Ethics page.

Author Instructions

Publishing with PalAss

A 'Publishing with PalAss' short guide is available here: 

Manuscript Preparation

Instructions for authors are available here:

Authors are also strongly advised to read the following: 


Please visit our online submission site:

Note that the same submission site should be use for both Palaeontology and Papers in Palaeontology and all papers will be considered for both journals.

Handling of manuscripts after submission

An initial assessment of the manuscript is undertaken by the Editorial Board, usually within two days of submission.  The Editorial Board may also recommend that the scope of the paper is more suitable for Palaeontology’s sister journal Papers in Palaeontology.  In this case, the corresponding author will be contacted directly and the paper may be transferred without resubmission.  Currently, the journal receives many more articles than can be published in a year.  Papers that lack novelty, or are too restricted in their scope, will be rejected without review.  A manuscript that lacks broad appeal to the readership and is instead, at best, a worthwhile but not exceptional contribution to specialists is unlikely to succeed.  Similarly, papers dealing with one or a few new taxa belonging to well-documented groups will be rejected.  Authoritative synoptic taxonomic revisions of faunas/floras or reports of new taxa of international importance are welcome, but must use the new insights gained to address, ideally resolve, a broader issue in palaeobiology.  It is imperative that the author demonstrates the wider appeal of the paper to the readership.  This should be stated clearly in a covering letter, be obvious from the abstract, be developed in the introduction to the paper, and explored in the Discussion.

A paper may also be returned to the author without review if it has not been prepared in accordance with the Instructions to Authors, or if there is room for linguistic improvement. A list of independent suppliers of editing services is available from Wiley Author Services. All services are paid for and arranged by the author, and do not guarantee acceptance for publication.

If the Editorial Board recommends review, the paper will be passed to a Scientific Editor who will manage the peer review process.  A decision on whether or not to publish the manuscript will be made in the light of the comments of at least two referees, an assessment of the technical aspects of the paper (including style and figure formats), and the opinions of the Scientific Editor and Editor-in-Chief.  The corresponding author will be notified.

Reporting and materials availability requirements

Details of palaeontological samples and specimens should include clear provenance information to ensure full transparency of the research methods. Samples should always be collected and exported in accordance with relevant permits and local laws, and in a responsible manner. Any submission detailing new material from protected sites should include information regarding the requisite permission obtained. Palaeontological and type specimens should be deposited in a recognised museum or collection to permit free access by other researchers in perpetuity.

Preprint policy

Preprints are versions of scientific manuscripts that have not been through formal peer-review or publication in a journal. They may be posted online pre-submission or post-acceptance of a revised version (green open access). With regard to the former we do not consider papers that have been posted on preprint servers such as paleoRχiv or bioRχiv, prior to submission to our journals. This is because the Palaeontological Association aims to publish the results of important original research; we do not accept papers describing work that has been published before, as this diminishes their immediacy and impact. Prior publication is defined as follows: results are considered to have already been published if they have appeared in sufficient detail to allow replication, are publicly accessible with a DOI, and can be cited. A paper has clearly been published if it has appeared in a journal or server cited by any widely used abstracting service, whether in print or online, in English or in any other language. Conversely, an abbreviated summary of work in a conference abstract does not constitute prior publication. However, when two of the three criteria (replicability, public accessibility, citeability) are met, or only a portion of an article has appeared before, the authors must convince the Editorial Board at the time of submission that the available preprint data is essential for the submitted paper yet forms only a minor, supportive contribution to the work they now wish to be considered. A paper that has been posted on a preprint server prior to submission and which largely or completely replicates the results being presented will be considered publicly accessible and citeable and will be rejected. Authors must disclose details of preprint posting, including DOI and licensing terms, upon submission of a manuscript. When a manuscript is made available in its published state in Palaeontology or Papers in Palaeontology, it is the author’s responsibility to ensure that the preprint record is updated with a publication reference, including the DOI and a URL link to the published version of the article on the journal website.

Upload of a preprint at the same time as submission or following submission is acceptable. However, please be aware that preprints including new taxonomic names should not be uploaded before publication of the final version of record.


The Palaeontological Association asserts copyright on all articles and images in its electronic and print publications unless otherwise stated. Articles or figures in the journal Palaeontology may be reproduced in print or electronic medium for teaching, and for non-profit educational and research purposes, without fees or further permissions, providing that acknowledgements to 'The Palaeontological Association' is given, and that the source of the reproduced material is quoted in full. The Palaeontological Association reserves the right to withdraw this permission without notice. Written permission is required by the Association for all other forms of capture, reproduction and/or distribution of any of its publications or items in its publications. Permission should be sought from the Executive Officer (