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Author Guidelines

The Journal of Negative Results - Ecology & Evolutionary Biology publishes peer-reviewed, sound scientific articles in ecology and evolutionary biology that may otherwise remain unknown because they seem uneventful rather than flawed. By counter-balancing such selective reporting, JNR-EEB aims to expand the capacity for formulating generalizations. It publishes studies that 1) test novel or established hypotheses/theories that yield negative or dissenting results, or 2) replicate work published previously in either cognate or different systems.

Authors submitting a manuscript do so with the understanding that the work has not been published before, is not being considered for publication elsewhere and has been read and approved by all credited authors. Authorship of a paper carries with it responsibility as well as credit; all authors should have contributed significantly to the design or execution of the research, the manuscript text, or the project guidance. All contributing authors must agree on the manuscript content at the time of submission and of the final version upon publication.

For copyright information, see the 'About the Journal' section.

Decisions of the editor are final.

Types of Manuscript

Standard Articles Standard reports of empirical or theoretical work.
Short Notes Studies in which the data are biologically interesting, but where statistical power is lacking.


Journal of Negative Results - Ecology & Evolutionary Biology

Instructions to Authors - Initial Submission


The manuscript, including all figures, should be submitted electronically in the form of a single .doc or .rtf file - see About -> Online Submissions.

Language Use either British or American English consistently throughout the text. The authors bear full responsibility for the language quality. If English is not your native language, make sure that the manuscript is checked by a native English speaker, preferably someone familiar with the nomenclature used. All manuscripts will be checked thoroughly by someone proficient in English, may returned for further corrections.

Meta-analyses In order to help researchers who may want to use the results in a meta-analysis, all estimates of key parameters should be presented, even if tests suggest that they are not significant. As well as the estimate, the standard error, sample size and degrees of freedom should be presented (it is not necessary that they be presented together - for example, the sample size and degrees of freedom may be placed in a separate ANOVA table, or in the text).


In scientific writing, only two tenses are normally used: present and past (simple). So-called `perfect tenses' (e.g. present perfect) should be avoided. Thus, there are the following `tense' rules that should be observed:
* Established knowledge (previous results) should be given in the present tense;
* Description of methods and results in the current paper should be in the past (simple) tense;
* Presentation is given in the present tense;
* Attributions (e.g. Jones (1995) reported that ...) are given in the past tense.

Layout of the Manuscript

The manuscript should be arranged as follows, with each section starting on a separate page.
Title page. This should contain:
1. A concise and informative title (as short as possible). Do not include the authorities for taxonomic names in the title.
2. The name, address and e-mail address of all of the authors, with the corresponding author indicated. First names in full (other initials, if any) and surnames (James T. Kirk, not J. T. Kirk) should be given. The address should be as complete as possible. Repeat surname, name and address for each author.
3. A list of keywords in alphabetical order not exceeding five words or short phrases, excluding words used in the title.
4. A running title, not exceeding 45 characters (including spaces)

Abstract. This should describe the main results and conclusions. It should consist of only one paragraph, and must not exceed 350 words. References to literature are not allowed in abstracts.

1. Introduction. This should state the reasons for the work, the nature of the hypothesis or hypotheses under consideration, and outline the essential background.

2. Materials and methods. This should provide sufficient details about the techniques to enable the work to be repeated.

3. Results. This should state the results, drawing attention in the text to important details shown in tables and figures.

4. Discussion. This should point out the significance of the results in relation to the reasons for doing the work, and place them in the context of other work.

Acknowledgements. These should not be too silly

References. References to literature in the text:
Mihok et al. (1985) or (Mihok et al. 1985)
Kurten and Anderson (1980) or (Kurten & Anderson 1980)
(Kurten & Anderson 1980, Mihok et al. 1985)
When referring to more than one publication, arrange them using the following keys:
1. Year of publication (ascending).
2. Alphabetical order for the same year of publication.

In the reference list:
Remove unpublished papers from the reference list. You can refer to them only in the text as unpublished (do not forget all authors' names and initials).
If an article is in press or accepted, the volume number of the journal must be given (if known).
Use original foreign titles if the title was not translated in the original publication.
Use only official abbreviations of journal titles as indicated in the journal itself, the Biological Abstracts or the Scientific Citations Index. In questionable cases provide full titles.
o Article in a journal (the journal's title italicised)
Mihok, S., Schwartz, B. & Iverson, S. L. 1985: Ecology of red-backed voles (Clethrionomys gapperi) in a gradient of gamma radiation. --- Ann. Zool. Fennici 22: 257--271.
Cannell, M. G. R., Murray, M. B. & Sheppard, L. J. 1985: Frost avoidance by selection for late budburst in Picea sitchensis. --- J. Appl. Ecol. 22: 931--941.
o Chapter in a publication (the publication's title italicised)
Gerlach, S. A. 1978: Nematomorpha. --- In: Illies, J. (ed.), Limnofauna Europaea. 2 ed.: 50--53.
Hänninen, H. 1990: Modelling dormancy release in trees from cool and temperate regions. --- In: Dixon, R. K., Melhdahl, R. S., Ruak, G. A. & Warren, W. G. (eds.), Process modelling of forest growth responses to environmental stress: 159--165. Timber Press Portland.
o Book (the book's title italicised)
Manly, B. F. J. 1986: Multivariate statistical methods. --- Chapman & Hall, London. 159 pp.
Finnish Meteorol. Inst. 1989: Climatological data 1988. --- Meteorol. Yearb. Finland 88: 1--125.
o Article is printed with Cyrillic letters (the journal's title italicised)
Give transliterated and original [in Cyrillic] authors' names. Give translated (not transliterated!) title within brackets [ ] (if not translated in original publication) e.g.:
Korbut, V. V. [Korbut, V. V.] 1989: Nest building of hooded crows. 1. Utilisation of different substrata. --- Zool. Zh. 68: 88--95. [In Russian with English summary].
Abramov, A. L. & Abramov, I. I. [Abramov, A. L. & Abramov, I. I.] 1956: [Mnium immarginatum (Lindb.) Broth. from Mongolia]. --- Bot. Zh. 41: 89--91. [In Russian].
o Article in press may be included in the references list, with the name and volume (if known) of the journal and a year followed by "[In press.]".
o Material in preparation or unpublished cannot be included in the reference list, and can only be referred to in the text using all authors' initials and names followed by "unpubl." or "pers. comm.".

Tables. These should be referred to in the text as Table 1, etc. Do not present the same data in both figure and table form. All tables should be placed at the end of the text file. Do not place tables within the text. A table should not be divided into sections identified with letters, instead each section should be presented as a separate table.
Place each table on a separate page in the text file, after the reference list.

Figures. Figures should be referred to in the text as Fig. 1, etc. (note Figs 1 and 2 with no period). In questionable cases, the top of the picture should be indicated with an arrow. Remember: Do not use shades of grey for the filling of columns or areas. Use only solid (white and/or black) or line- or dot-type fillings for filling columns or areas, do not use shades of grey. For first submission tables, figures and illustrations are submitted in the same file with the body text.
Place each figure on a separate page in the text file, after the Tables.
For second submission where editing takes place; see details in the section second submission.
Remember: Figures must be referred to for the first time in the text in numerical order (e.g., the first reference to Fig. 2 cannot precede the first reference to Fig. 1). Check that all figures are referred to.
Illustrations. should be referred to as Figures.

Appendices. If there is only one appendix it can be referred to in the text as 'Appendix' without the number. Otherwise, appendices must be numbered.

Format of the Text

Do not use boldface (only symbols of vectors, matrices and tensors can be set in boldface).
Refer to tables and figures parenthetically.
Footnotes are allowed only in tables and exceptionally in text.
Equations: Each equation occupies a separate line. Place an equation's number on the right-hand side e.g.:

N = 0.3Wln (a + b) (1).

Equations must be referred to as "Eq.", followed by the appropriate number.
Remember: Figures and tables must be referred to for the first time in the text in numerical order (e.g., the first reference to Fig. 2 cannot precede the first reference to Fig. 1).
Check that all figures and tables are referred to.



Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.

  1. The submission file is in Microsoft Word .doc or .rtf format, with the text double-spaced, 12-point font, italics when required (not underlined) and continuous line numbering.
  2. The body text is arranged as follows;
    Title page (Title, Authors, Institution addresses)
    Abstract (a maximum of 350 words)
    1. Introduction
    2. Materials and methods (subsections, if any, as follows 2.1., 2.2., etc.)
    3. Results (subsections, if any, as follows 3.1., 3.2., etc.)
    4. Discussion
    Figure legends
  3. Tables are placed after the reference list, one table per page (Tables are referred to in the text as Table 1, Table 2, etc.).
  4. Figures are placed after the tables, one figure per page (Figures are referred to in the text as Fig. 1, Fig. 2, etc.).
  5. Ensure that all references referred to in the text are in the reference list, and vice versa.
  6. Follow the Author Guidelines (About -> Submissions -> Author Guidelines)
  7. Submissions should neither have been previously published, nor under consideration in another journal while under consideration in JNR-EEB.
  8. You are ready to submit to JNR-EEB!

Copyright Notice

Author(s) of an accepted article transfers the full copyright ownership (including that of illustrations) to the publisher of the Journal of Negative Results - Ecology & Evolutionary Biology (henceforth the Publisher), so that the article can be copyrighted from now on under the name of the Publisher and published in any available form.

The author(s) warrants that the article (including the illustrations) is an original work, not published, scheduled to be published, or submitted elsewhere in whole or in part, except in an abstract form, and that the author(s) has full authority to make this grant. The author(s) also warrants that if a part(s) of the articles has been previously published, permission(s) allowing publication of the respective material in our journal has been obtained. Copy(ies) of permission(s) should be submitted with the manuscript.

Permission issued by the Publisher must be obtained by anyone wishing to reproduce figures, tables and/or substantial parts of texts from articles published in JNR-EEB. In a new publication an appropriate acknowledgement(s) should be placed.

The Publisher will allow the author(s) to reproduce or re-use parts of the original material without permission. However, if the author(s) wishes to include the entire article into another publication, a separate permission issued by the Publisher must absolutely be obtained. In a new publication an appropriate acknowledgement(s) should be placed. The Publisher assumes that such a publication will not be commercially distributed (sold); otherwise a financial compensation for reproducing the article(s) may apply.

The author(s) will not receive any royalty or other financial compensation for transferring the copyrights to the Publisher.


Journal of Negative Results. ISSN: 1459-4625