We encourage submissions of posts from 800 to 1,200 words that are written in an accessible way. We’re interested in all facets of Brexit: economics, politics, campaigning, cultural and social dimensions and legal implications. Migration and constitutional issues are of particular interest. We are keen to include tables, charts, and relevant figures where appropriate.
You are welcome to propose ideas informally to our Managing Editors, Ros Taylor and Roch Dunin-Wasowicz. To submit an article for consideration, please e-mail it in a Word file to us. Please also include Excel files for figures and charts so that these can be modified.
To help authors with the submission process, we’ve compiled a list of some of the main style issues to keep in mind when drafting an article for LSE Brexit.
Length and format
- In order to increase readability and accessibility, we usually aim for our articles to be between 800 and 1,200 words.
- We are also happy to post longer essays of over 2,000 words if appropriate for the topic. Please discuss this with Ros and Roch.
- ‘Snap’ contributions of around 400 words are also welcomed, particularly if they are timely.
- Please send us your draft article in Word format, with your name at the top.
Audience, writing style and language
- Your article should be written with a relatively wide audience in mind, including policy-makers and other non-academics.
- Our most widely read blog articles are written in a more natural style, so we recommend that you avoid overusing acronyms and academic terms, such as Latin words, or specific terminology that may not be well known outside disciplinary circles. Also avoid introductory phrases like “In this paper I will…”, or “This paper aims to…”, and go straight into your discussion of the topic.
- Use short paragraphs made up of a few sentences.
- As with journalistic pieces, ‘lead with the best.’ Don’t save your main argument or analysis for the end of the post.
- Write your article as a standalone piece, even if it summarises material in a longer paper or journal article. Try to present all of your argument and evidence within the text and avoid relying too heavily on information contained in external sources. Avoid phrases such as “In my recent paper, I have shown that Italy should hold new elections…” and simply say “Italy should hold new elections for these reasons…” Remember that many journal articles are behind a paywall and not all readers will have access to them. Ultimately the aim is to present your research, not simply to describe what you have written elsewhere.
- We use links rather than citations for references. Links should direct readers to more detailed reports or other pieces of research, news items or other blog posts. Open access sources are preferred to those behind paywalls.
- Please insert a hyperlink at the relevant point of your argument that you’d like to reference: e.g. “Joe Bloggs has said…” The easiest way to insert a hyperlink in Microsoft Word is to copy the address of the website, highlight the phrase you’d like to appear as a link in the text and press “ctrl” and “k”. This will bring up an option menu that allows you to paste in the web address.
- Please try to avoid using footnotes wherever possible and integrate material directly into the text.
- We use narrative titles – a single sentence that sums up the main argument of the article. The more descriptive and catchy the title, the more likely the article is to be read. Try to avoid questions (How will pensioners vote?) or general topics (Ukip and Britain). Some examples of good titles:
- Expats can’t be choosers: why Britons living in the EU won’t swing the referendum
- Lies, damned lies and statistics on the UK’s EU membership
- Catch them while they’re registered: the case for voting at 16
- Try and keep titles to twenty words or less, if possible
Graphs and Charts
- We encourage the use of charts and figures. Graphs and charts are preferable to tables, as they are easier for readers to interpret quickly. In all cases, please send us the raw data of your chart, table, or figure in Excel format.
- Each chart needs a clearly labelled heading, labels for the X and Y axes or histogram bars, including units of measurement and a readable scale or background grid.
- There should be a clear legend distinguishing multiple data series from each other and a brief note on sources. Lines must be thick enough and distinctively coloured. Charts should use a numerical progression to make comparisons more visible
Biography and contributor photo
- We’re proud of our contributors, so we like to give them full attribution. Please send us a three to four line biographical note, with your academic position, research interests, and details of your two most recent books.
- Please also send us a small colour photo headshot. Our preference is for a more formal portrait style, rather than a photo taken from an event.
Our editing process
- In most cases submitted articles will be reviewed speedily by the editors, who will edit the piece to ensure it reaches as wide an audience as possible. Once these edits are complete, we will send you the final version of the article, and give you an opportunity to make any corrections.
- All articles on LSE BrexitVote should be evidence based. With this in mind, editors may double-check the factual accuracy of certain points, or ask you for links to supporting information.
BrexitVote house style
- Minimise use of bold, underlining, and italics for emphasis.
- We use British spelling – e.g. “organisation” instead of “organization”.
- Use ‘per cent’ instead of %.
- We spell “euro” without a capital, but “Eurosceptic” with a capital.