Article Categories

Design Science publishes primarily research articles that describe new fundamental contributions to knowledge. Design Science papers address a broad audience and tend to have longer introductory sections with explanations of terminology and well-articulated development of the knowledge gap they aim to address. To assist authors in framing their submissions, a guide for research papers appropriate for Design Science is provided here. LaTeX files provided here

Other types of papers are review papers and position papers. Review papers should be more than a simple enumeration of published work and provide new insights into the relevant body of knowledge. Position papers are well-argued opinions by the authors about a design topic. While a research paper presents facts, claims or hypotheses and provides objective proof that they are true (or, occasionally, false), a position paper aims to convince the reader that the expressed opinion is valid and worthwhile. Position papers in Design Science serve to stimulate discussion in the design community on current or emerging topics. The opinion or “position” that is put forth must be supported by evidence from objective sources, such as published papers, data or documented discussions, but it not required to be validated in the normal way of research papers, and therefore, it is ultimately a subjective statement. Both review and position papers are highly valued if executed well.

The design practice brief is another paper category that is aims to include insightful work that is not research per se.  A Design Practice Brief is a short article reporting a design experience of significant and archival value to the design community. Design Practice Briefs address directly the embedding of artifacts in our physical, virtual, psychological, economic, and social environment. Briefs may address a range of experiences, including how a successful design came to exist, design process implementations, successes or failures of design theories, industry and studio practices, early results from a practical implementation of research studies, or insights gained from actual design practice. Design Practice Briefs are not short research articles, applied research articles or theoretical position papers. They must clearly address the element of “practice” and they must exhibit sustained value for current and future readers. The recommended length is 3000-6000 words.

All paper categories undergo full peer review.


Authors should submit manuscripts as a single PDF file at the Design Science website of ScholarOne: The ScholarOne site contains detailed information about the manuscript submission and management process. While there is no explicit manuscript limit, a manuscript should generally not exceed the equivalent of 10,000 words including tables and figures. Manuscripts must be written in English, preferably in US English grammar style, and must be carefully edited prior to submission. Manuscripts that do not meet acceptable language quality standards will be returned to authors without review.

Formatting Template

A LaTex template with instructions can be downloaded as the zip folder: dsj-class. The pdf of the instructions is here and can be used as a guide to authors who do not use LaTex to see how the paper would look like in print. There is no template for Microsoft Word or similar word processor. Using a template is not necessary for the original manuscript or the production files, but using the LaTex template might reduce chances for typesetting errors in complicated mathematical text.

Language Style

All articles are published in English. Use of either British English or US English is acceptable, as long as they are used consistently throughout the article. When there is no preference, authors should use US English. There are some misconceptions about the differences regarding British vs. US English, for example, in the use of sa/ise/isi versus za/ize/izi spellings: Whether authors use ise or ize is purely their preference, see for an explanation. Authors who have a preference in the language style should indicate that in the final production files of accepted articles.

Artwork and Permissions

For up-to-date guidance for preparing figure files to ensure the best reproduction please visit
Please note that when using someone else’s image/artwork you must have sought permission to use it, and a copy of the written permission must be included with the copyright transfer form/Open Access form. Without this permission, the image should not be used. You must also ensure that you attribute the work correctly according to the owner’s instructions in the caption for the figure.
For helpful external advice regarding seeking permissions please see:

AI Contributions to Research Content

AI use must be declared and clearly explained in publications such as research papers, just as we expect scholars to do with other software, tools and methodologies.
AI does not meet the Cambridge requirements for authorship, given the need for accountability. AI and LLM tools may not be listed as an author on any scholarly work published by Cambridge
Authors are accountable for the accuracy, integrity and originality of their research papers, including for any use of AI.
Any use of AI must not breach Cambridge’s plagiarism policy. Scholarly works must be the author’s own, and not present others’ ideas, data, words or other material without adequate citation and transparent referencing.


Design Science follows a single-blind, two-tiered peer review model. Reviewers remain anonymous and are aware of the authors’ names and affiliations. Once a paper is submitted, an Editor-in-Chief (EIC) will assign the paper to an Associate Editor (AE). The AE will then assign the submission to typically three reviewers who will provide a recommendation and written comments. If necessary, the AE will request “major revisions” from the authors for a second review. Informed by the collected reviews, the AE will make a recommendation to the EIC to accept, reject or accept with minor revisions. The EIC will make the final decision and has final responsibility for the acceptance or rejection of a submission.

Authors are able to follow the progress of the review on ScholarOne. The entire process for papers that do not require major revisions should be completed within 6-8 weeks.

Publication and Open Access

Design Science publishes annual volumes online and has no separate issues. Once a paper is accepted, it is sent for production. Authors must return proofs of the typeset article in a timely manner. As soon as production is complete, accepted papers will appear immediately online.

Papers are published via a “gold” open access model under a creative commons license, with authors retaining copyright of the published articles. The articles will be made freely available to the public in perpetuity through the Cambridge University Press (CUP) website.

In order to meet the costs associated with publishing Design Science, each accepted paper is assessed an Article Publishing Charge (APC).  Cambridge University Press (CUP) has an APC of USD 3255 per article published. However, Members of the Design Society (with currently valid membership) are charged a reduced APC of USD586. Design Society annual membership fees are differentiated according to the gross national income (GNI) per capita of the member’s home country, using the annually updated World Bank Atlas method.  Specifically, the full member fees are UKP 100 / 75 / 50 / 25 for countries in the World Bank categories 'high income' / 'upper middle income' / 'lower middle income' / 'low income'. Associate Membership is available to students or recent graduates with a fee of UKP 20.  The maximum period for Associate Membership is 5 years. Further details at

At the discretion of the Editor-In-Chief (EIC) and the Publisher, the APC fee may be waived at the request of authors who have no available funding. Requests must be submitted to the EIC and may be granted only after a paper has been accepted for publication.  The publisher will send an invoice to authors shortly after acceptance of the paper. Authors who are unable to pay the APC should contact the Editor-In-Chief after their paper is accepted to request an exemption for cause. A limited number of exemptions are available to authors from developing countries.



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