Instructions for authors

Goals and content | General information | Open access | Word count and Page Charge | Types of manuscripts | Preparation of manuscripts | Proofs | Submission of manuscripts | Online Archiving Policy

Goals and content

The aim of the Journal is to promote research in the fields of occupational and environmental health and safety and to increase knowledge through the publication of original research articles, systematic reviews, and other information of high interest. Areas of interest include occupational and environmental epidemiology, occupational and environmental medicine, psychosocial factors at work, physical work load, work-related mental and musculoskeletal problems, aging, work ability and return to work, working hours and health, occupational hygiene and toxicology, work safety and injury epidemiology as well as occupational health services. In addition to observational studies, quasi-experimental and intervention studies are welcome as well as methodological papers, and studies associated with economic evaluation. The Journal also publishes short communications, commentaries, discussion papers, and consensus reports, provided that these are of scientific interest.

General information

Papers are accepted on the understanding that they are submitted solely to the Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment & Health and subject to editorial review. By submitting a manuscript, authors agree that the copyright for the manuscript is automatically transferred to the Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment & Health at the time of its acceptance for publication unless the open access option is taken in which case copyright is lifted. A double-blind peer review process is used. The editors cannot enter into correspondence about papers that are rejected as being unsuitable for publication, and their decision is final.

All submitted papers must conform to the "Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals" (see: http://www.icmje.org), which is often referred to as the Vancouver style.

Open access

For the time being, the Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment & Health is a hybrid journal, we publish both "locked" and open articles but we are in transition to becoming a completely open access journal by 2022. From 2021 onwards, by default, accepted articles should be published as copyright-free open access papers. Exception from the open access fee will be granted in specific situations, after request to the journal. The open access fee implies that the journal does not place ANY restrictions on how an article can be distributed or shared. It can be published on any data repository, photocopied, emailed or republished as long as the publication information (eg, Scand J Work Environ Health. 2013;39(1):1-4) is included.

There are several ways a paper can be published as open access:

  1. The author or supporting institution pays the article processing fee of EUR 2300 (VAT not included).
  2. The first author is affiliated with an organization that is a member of NOROSH (For more details, visit http://www.norosh.org/pmwiki.php/Membership). NOROSH membership fees cover unlimited free online access to the Scand J Work Environ Health and a partial waiver (a payment of EUR 1150 is required) of the article processing charge for first authors from the member institution.
  3. The Journal's Editor-in-Chief selects the paper as that issue's Editor's Pick.

Click here for more details.

Word count and Page Charge

For reasons of readability and brevity, all submissions must be concise. We have the following limits:

Original research and discussion papers:

  • Abstract: 250 words
  • Text (from introduction to conclusion): 4000 words
  • Tables/Figures: 5 (standard size tables/figures)
  • References: about 40

Short communication:

  • Abstract: 250 words
  • Text (from introduction to conclusion): 1500 words
  • Tables/Figures: 2 (standard size tables/figures)
  • References: 20

Systematic reviews

  • Abstract: 250 words
  • Text: 5000 words
  • Tables/Figures: 5 are preferred, but additional tables/figures might be allowed depending on the circumstances. Longer tables than standard tables might also be allowed
  • References: 40 are preferred, but additional references might be allowed if the review is based on a large number of included studies.

Authors are required to note the Word Count and numbers of tables/figures on the cover page.

Following the word count limits will result in articles no longer than 7 pages (12 for Reviews). Under some rare circumstances, the editors may allow authors to publish an article that exceeds the word count limits. If this results in articles longer than 7-printed pages (12 for Reviews), the author must accept the responsibility for the cost of printing all pages in excess of this. The charges are: 1 excess page = EUR 143; 2 excess pages = EUR 286; 3 excess pages = EUR 858; 4 excess pages = EUR 1144; 12 excess pages = EUR 2145 + 429 per additional page thereafter.

Types of manuscripts

Original research articles

Original full paper/communication. These articles should report original research studies that are relevant to occupational and environmental health in a way that is accessible to readers of the Journal. A concise writing style is encouraged.

Short communication. These articles report original data using a limited study question or a topic that can be reported concisely.

Reporting of original research articles. The Journal requires authors to follow a pertinent guideline from the current existing guidelines on the reporting of various study types (presented in the table below). If a randomized controlled trial is reported, authors should complete a CONSORT checklist and flow-chart and be prepared to submit it if requested. The Equator network of reporting guidelines provides a more extensive list of links and topics at www.equator-network.org. The Journal instructions provide further advice on format and layout of the manuscript.

Table: Guidelines for reporting original research articles.
Name of guidelineTopic of guideline
STROBE Observational studies (1)
CONSORT Randomized controlled trials (2, 3)
PRISMA Systematic reviews and meta-analyses of intervention studies (4)
MOOSE Systematic reviews and meta-analyses of observational studies (5)
TREND Nonrandomized evaluations of behavioral and public health interventions (6)
STARD Diagnostic studies (7)
MIAME Microarray studies (8)
COREQ Qualitative studies (9)
  1. Vandenbroucke JP, von EE, Altman DG, Gotzsche PC, Mulrow CD, Pocock SJ, et al. Strengthening the reporting of observational studies in epidemiology (STROBE): explanation and elaboration. PLoS Med. 2007;4(10):e297.
  2. Altman DG, Schulz KF, Moher D, Egger M, Davidoff F, Elbourne D, et al. The revised CONSORT statement for reporting randomized trials: explanation and elaboration. Ann Intern Med, 2001;134(8):663-94.
  3. Consort Group. Consolidated standards of reporting trials [Internet]. Consort Group [cited 2 June 2008]. Available from: www.consort-statement.org
  4. Moher D, Liberati A, Tetzlaff J, Altman DG, The PRISMA Group. Preferred reporting items for systematic reviews and meta-analyses: The PRISMA Statement: PLoS Med 2009;6(7):e1000097.
  5. Stroup DF, Berlin JA, Morton SC, Olkin I, Williamson GD, Rennie D, et al. Meta-analysis of observational studies in epidemiology: a proposal for reporting: meta-analysis of observational studies in epidemiology (MOOSE) group. JAMA. 2000;283(15):2008-12.
  6. Des Jarlais DC, Lyles C, Crepaz N. Improving the reporting quality of nonrandomized evaluations of behavioral and public health interventions: the TREND statement. Am J Public Health. 2004;94(3):361-6.
  7. Bossuyt PM, Reitsma JB, Bruns DE, Gatsonis CA, Glasziou PP, Irwig L, LijmerJG Moher D, Rennie D, de Vet HCW, Kressel HY, Rifai N, Golub RM, Altman DG, Hooft L, Korevaar DA, Cohen JF, For the STARD Group. STARD 2015: An Updated List of Essential Items for Reporting Diagnostic Accuracy Studies. BMJ. 2015;351:h5527.
  8. Brazma A, Hingamp P, Quackenbush J, Sherlock G, Spellman P, Stoeckert C, et al. Minimum information about a microarray experiment (MIAME)-toward standards for microarray data. Nat Genet. 2001;29(4):365-71.
  9. Tong A, Sainsbury P, Craig J. Consolidated criteria for reporting qualitative research (COREQ): a 32-item checklist for interviews and focus groups. Int J Qual Health Care. 2007;19(6):349-57.

Reviews

Systematic reviews. The Journal views systematic reviews as reports of reviews of the literature on specific questions relevant to occupational health and safety, and environmental health. Therefore, a systematic review is characterized by a well-defined question, concrete inclusion and exclusion criteria, a systematic search of the literature, and well-defined methods of synthesizing the results from individual studies. A systematic review must include a sufficient number of original studies to be worth considering. A meta-analysis is defined as a systematic review that includes a statistical pooling of the results of individual studies.

Other reviews. The Journal prefers systematic reviews whenever such a review can be performed. When a systematic review is not feasible, for example, when the topic is more theoretical, nonsystematic reviews will also be considered. However, a search strategy and criteria for included studies will still be required.

Reporting of reviews. The Journal requires authors of systematic reviews on experimental studies to complete the PRISMA checklist and flowchart and be prepared to submit it if requested. When a meta-analysis of observational studies is carried out, authors should use the PRISMA checklist when possible, and, when not possible, the MOOSE checklist should be used.

Discussion papers

Research or practical questions relevant to occupational and environmental health can be presented with a free format in a Discussion Paper. These papers can, for example, suggest a new research area; they can also suggest a new approach in research or prevention or treatment practice in occupational health. Although the format of presentation is more flexible than that of a review, the approach should still be critical and scientifically valid.

Preparation of manuscripts

Manuscripts should be in English and should be concise as possible without detracting from clarity. The abstract should be structured (maximum 250 words with the titles Objectives, Methods, Results and Conclusions with key terms not listed in the title). The acknowledgments should include credit for contributions that do not justify authorship, note of technical help, acknowledgment of financial and material support, disclosure of any relationships that may pose conflicts of interest (financial relationships with industry, affiliation with or involvement in an organization with a direct financial interest in the subject matter, etc) and information about protection of research participants.

Arrangement

Manuscripts should be typewritten, double-spaced. They should be divided into two documents: (1) a cover page [title; names by which each author is known; one academic degree per author; authors' affiliations; address for correspondence (including e-mail address); a 60-word summary of what is new in the paper/what are the policy implications of the paper and a running head of no more than 60 characters]; and (2) the main manuscript with a max 250-word abstract and key terms (none that are in the title), followed by sections on Methods, Results, Discussion, Concluding Remarks (optional), Acknowledgements (including acknowledgement of financial material support, conflicts of interest, protection of research participants), references, Tables, Figures. Any appendix/supplementary material should be placed at the end of the document, after the Figures.

References

References should STRICTLY follow the style recommended by the "Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals" (see: Section IV.A.9.). They should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they are first mentioned in the text and identified in the text, tables, and legends by Arabic numerals in parentheses (no superscripts!)strong>. Unpublished observations and personal communications cannot be used as references; they can, however, be mentioned in the text in parentheses. If a publication has six or fewer authors, all the authors are listed. If there are more than six, list the first six authors and add "et al".

Examples of typical reference entries:

  1. Schneider T. Improving exposure assessment requires measurements and modeling [editorial]. Scand J Work Environ Health. 2002;28:367-70.
  2. Ketola R, Toivonen R, Häkkänen M, Luukkonen R, Takala E-P, Viikari-Juntura E, et al. Effects of ergonomic intervention in work with video display units. Scand J Work Environ Health. 2002;28:18-24.
  3. International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). Reevaluation of some organic chemicals, hydrazine and hydrogen peroxide. Lyon: IARC; 1997. IARC monographs on the evaluation of the carcinogenic risks of chemicals to humans, vol 71.
  4. Deerasamee MS, Martin N, Sriplung H, Sontipong S, Sriamporn S, Srivatanatul P, et al. Cancer in Thailand; vol II (1992-1994). Lyon: International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). IARC technical report, no 34.
  5. Miettinen OS. Theoretical epidemiology in evolution, 1972-2002. In: Nurminen M, editor. 30 years of epidemiology for the benefit of occupational health: proceedings of the symposium, Sven Hernberg symposium. Helsinki: Finnish Institute of Occupational Health; 2002. p 25-9. People and work research reports, no 50.

For a more extensive list of examples see: International Committee of Medical Journal Editors Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals: Sample References. In addition, Citing Medicine: the NLM Style Guide for Authors, Editors and Publishers offers extensive coverage of how to cite references.

Tables

When submitting tables, place the tables at the end of the text after the reference list. Do not use tabs or macros in the table and keep formatting to a minimum. All results sharing a column must be the same type of value (ie, percent, number, standard deviation etc). However, you can place entities that are closely linked to each other such as Mean (SD), number of participants (percentage) or OR (95% CI) together in the same column. Define all acronyms used in the table in the table legend. Use alphabetical footnoting. Tables should be constructed to fit in one or two columns of the Journal (the font cannot be reduced to squeeze extra wide tables). All tables should be self-explanatory and should supplement the text, not duplicate it. The table numbers should be mentioned in the text. See this simple do’s and don’ts of table construction (document from inera.com website). Tables that present measures of relative risk (e.g., odds ratios, risk ratios, hazard ratios) should also show number of exposed individuals and percentage of cases (or number of cases per person-years) for each exposure category, as this will help readers to put the relative risks into perspective.

Some good tables from our own publications:

Figures

All illustrative material should be considered as figures. When submitting figures, place the figures at the end of the text after the reference list. If for technical reasons this is not possible than submit the figures as a separate file (preferable pdf file). All figures should be mentioned in the text and numbered consecutively in Arabic numerals. All the figures should have a minimum resolution of 800 dpi. Letters, numbers, and symbols should be clear and of sufficient size that, when reduced to fit the columns of a printed page, each item will still be legible. All figures should be of the same proportions (ie, drawn and lettered to the same scale). Color figures will be accepted at the special request of the author, who will then be responsible for paying the extra expenses incurred.

Protection of Research Participants

All submitted research articles must include a statement (either in the Method section or the Acknowledgement) that the study obtained ethics approval (or a statement that it was not required and why), including the name of the ethics committee(s) or institutional review board(s), the number/ID of the approval(s), and a statement that participants gave informed consent before taking part. If no formal ethics committee is available, authors should indicate the procedures followed were in accordance with the Helsinki Declaration as revised in 2008. If doubt exists whether the research was conducted in accordance with the Helsinki Declaration, the authors must explain the rationale for their approach and demonstrate that the institutional review body explicitly approved the doubtful aspects of the study.

Informed Consent

Any article that contains personal medical information about an identifiable living individual requires the patient’s explicit consent before it can be published. If consent cannot be obtained because the patient cannot be traced then publication will be possible only if the information can be sufficiently anonymized. Identifying information, including names, initials, or hospital numbers, should not be published in written descriptions, photographs, or pedigrees unless the information is essential for scientific purposes and the patient (or parent or guardian) gives written informed consent for publication. Informed consent for this purpose requires that an identifiable patient be shown the manuscript to be published. Authors should disclose to these patients whether any potential identifiable material might be available via the Internet as well as in print after publication.

Conflict of Interest & Funding

Authors must declare all conflicts of interest. If there are no, this must also be stated ("Authors declare no conflicts of interest"). Authors must declare all sources of funding and describe the role of the study sponsor(s), if any, in the (i) study design, (ii) the collection, analysis and interpretation of the data, (iii) the writing of the report, and (iv) the decision to submit the paper for publication. If the funder(s) had no such involvement, this should be stated.

Proofs

Authors will receive a PDF of their article for proofreading.

Submission of manuscripts

Only electronic submissions are accepted. Click here to submit your manuscript. If there are any problems, consult the Journal's secretary, Johanna Parviainen (johanna.parviainen@ttl.fi).

In the accompanying letter, the author should include a (i) information on prior or duplicate publication or on submission elsewhere of any part of the work, (ii) financial or other relationships that might lead to a conflict of interest, (iii) a statement that the manuscript has been read by all authors, that the requirements for authorship have been met by all authors and that each author believes that the manuscript represents honest work, and (iv) any other information that may prove useful to the editor (e.g., the type of article that the manuscript represents).

Online Archiving Policy

The Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment & Health permits authors to self-archive their work in open access repositories as "pre- and post-prints". Pre-print versions can be archived immediately without restriction. Archiving of "post-print" (eg, the final published version) manuscripts is permitted when the article is published open access in the journal. If the articles is not published open access, then the following restrictions apply:

  • post-print manuscripts can be published only 12 months from the date of publication (ie, if the paper is published in May 2016, it can be deposited into the repository on May 2017.)
  • post-print manuscripts can be archived on author or institutional servers (incl PubMed Central) without permission after the 1-year embargo period expires, for other websites please contact the journal.
  • Publisher copyright and source must be acknowledged
  • the paper must link to the publisher version (Scand J Work Environ Health PDF). See our open access page for further information.