How to submit a paper to CM&E in Manuscript Central

When you have written a paper that you would like us to consider for publication, the only way to submit the paper to us is through the Scholar One website (formerly known as Manuscript Central). While many journals use this same software, the configuration is often different in many details. The guidance here should help to avoid the editorial office un-submitting the paper and asking you to attend to some detailed point that could easily have been avoided. Paying attention at this stage will help to smooth the processing of your paper.

  1. First, if you have never used this system before, you will need to set yourself up with a user account. For advice on how to do this, please see the guidance here. Please note that each journal in Manuscript Central requires an independent login from you, which, unfortunately, means you need to maintain different user account for each journal!
  2. Please prepare your documents, tables and figures in an editable format, to save us having to come back to you for minor requests relating to editing, capitalization, layout and grey shading. Avoid uploading PDFs, for example.
  3. Also, it may be useful to compose the text of your covering letter before you start the submission process, so that you have all the documents you need ready to enter into the system. In the case of the covering letter, there is no formatting or layout required, as you will copy-paste the text into a box during the submission process – see “How to write an informative and helpful covering letter” for further guidance.
  4. To submit your paper, login to and enter your Author Centre.
  5. Look for a grey box in the middle of the screen labelled “Author Resources” and click on “here” in the sentence, “Click here to submit a new manuscript”.
  6. You are then presented with 7 steps. These can be completed in any sequence. You may log out of this process at any point. As long as you clicked “Save and Continue” or “Save and Go Back” before your exited, everything will be still there when you come back. However, when you return at a later time, you will find the unfinished submission in your author centre, at the bottom of the opening page.
  7. Screen 1: Type, Title & Abstract – Manuscript type will normally be Research Paper. You will know if it is one of the others. In composing a title, please capitalize only the first word of the title, and proper nouns, nothing else. Do not explain acronyms in the title. If you are using a sub-title, use a colon rather than a dash to separate it. The Running Head will appear on the top of each page of the published paper and should only be 2-3 words, not the whole title again. The abstract should summarize, not introduce – see
  8. Screen 2: Attributes – Please use the keywords from the drop-down list. Don’t worry if they do not match exactly the keywords you want to appear in the paper. Those entered here are only used to match your paper to the appropriate referees. Therefore, there is no need to try to enter unique keywords. Avoid the user-entered keywords, unless you think we need a new one in the list.
  9. Screen 3: Authors and Institutions – Your own details should appear automatically here to start with. Add your co-authors. You can add them in any sequence. When they are all entered, then you may change the sequence using the drop-down boxes under the column headed “order”. To add a co-author, you only need the email address that they have entered in this system. Type that and click “Find”, so that all the other details are completed from the database. If you cannot find them, are they using a different email address in Scholar One? Try to avoid creating a new record for people who are already in the database.
  10. Screen 4: Reviewers & Editors – here you can suggest appropriate referees, or ask us to avoid people who may have a conflict of interest. We do not necessarily use the referees you suggest, so you need not ask their permission. It simply helps us to understand what kind of person to use. We may use them, but we may not.
  11. Screen 5: Details & Comments – paste the text of your cover letter here. Enter the numerical manuscript information as NUMBERS, not in words, and with no punctuation or units. Just digits. The remaining questions are self-explanatory. If you are submitting a paper for a special issue, then please check whether you have received an invitation to submit, which will have directed you to enter this process via a slightly different route, and some of this data will already be completed for you. Questions that have a purple “req” next to them are required to be answered, and you cannot save the page if you leave them blank.
  12. Screen 6: File Upload – You can upload as many files as you wish, the only limit being that you upload them three at a time. Once you have uploaded the first three, you can repeat the process. In each case, choose the file description to identify the type of file. The sequence can be changed after the files are uploaded. Figures and Tables can be uploaded separately from the main document. They might be one per file, or one file for all of them, as you see fit. A separate title page is required to avoid errors and omissions during the production process. This should be identified as Title Page in the file description box. It need contain only the title of the paper and the full name, address and email of each author in the sequence that they will appear in the paper. Nothing else is needed in this file, and a file identified as Title Page will not be seen by referees.
  13. Screen 7: Review & Submit – if you have omitted anything, this page will alert you to it, so that you can go back and fix it. You cannot click “submit” until you download the PDF of your submission. This is compiled from all the files you uploaded. Please look at it and check that Figures have converted adequately, and that nothing is missing. Only click submit after you have checked the PDF.
  14. If you do not click submit, then your paper is not submitted and we will be unaware of it. If you have clicked submit, you will get a confirmation message on the screen, including the ID number. Keep this and use it if you need to email us about your paper.

Please note that the Scholar One system is not maintained or designed by the Editors or the Publishers. If you are experiencing technical difficulties, then click on Get Help Now, which appears in red print at the top right of every screen in the system.

Some papers are rejected as soon as they are submitted, often for fairly basic reasons. If you wish to avoid desk-rejection and carry out the checks for yourself, please see

All papers are refereed by experts in the field who will not know the identity of the authors (double-blind refereeing). We aim to get three reviews. If you wonder why this sometimes takes longer than it ought to, please see


About Will

Professor of Construction Management and Economics, University of Reading, UK. Editor-in-Chief, Construction Management and Economics (1992-2016). Programme Director, MSc Construction Management. School Director of Postgraduate Teaching Programmes.
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