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Submissions to the Stata Journal

Types of submissions
Copyright information
Submission guide
Initial submission
Review process
Accepted submission
Author copy of final version
Software update/correction submission

Types of submissions

The Stata Journal publishes reviewed papers together with shorter notes or comments, regular columns, book reviews, and other material of interest to Stata users.

A paper should potentially be of interest to users of the statistical software Stata. We are especially interested in publishing the following kinds of papers:

  • Papers that survey a new field of statistics or a major new technique and provide illustrations using Stata commands or programs.
  • Papers that go “beyond the Stata manual” in explaining key features or uses of Stata that are relevant to intermediate or advanced users of Stata.
  • Papers that discuss new commands or Stata programs of interest either to a wide spectrum of users (for example, in data management or graphics) or to some large segment of Stata users (for example, in survey statistics, survival analysis, panel analysis, limited dependent variable modeling).
  • Papers that analyze the statistical properties of new or existing estimators and tests in Stata. This includes topics such as simulations of bias, convergence, or small-sample properties of estimators and tests; power analyses; and comparisons of tests or estimators.
  • Papers of interest or usefulness to researchers, especially in fields that are of practical importance but not often written up in texts or other journals (for example, the use of Stata in managing datasets, particularly large datasets, with advice from hard-won experience).
  • Papers of interest to those teaching with Stata. Topics might include extended examples of techniques and interpretation of results, simulations of statistical concepts, and overviews of subject areas.

Notes and comments are normally short (about one page or less). Notes and comments should refer to material previously published in the Journal (or in the Stata Technical Bulletin).

Columns and book reviews are solicited by the editors. Book reviews concentrate on books published by Stata Press. You can volunteer to review a recently published Stata Press book by emailing your name, contact information, and Stata Press book of interest to editors@stata-journal.com.

Stata tips are concise notes about Stata commands, features, or tricks that users may not have encountered. A tip will draw attention to useful details in Stata or Stata’s uses. Tips, however, do not include expositions of community-contributed commands. Tips must be brief, usually two or three printed pages.

This list is not intended to be exclusive, merely suggestive, and the editors are happy to consider other kinds of papers with some link to Stata.

We do not publish in the Stata Journal 1) any articles on statistics or statistical science, however broadly defined, that lack Stata content or specific application to Stata use or 2) Stata programs that lack supporting discussion.

Although the Stata Journal focuses on Stata-specific application of a general technique, the restriction above does not prohibit you from submitting your technique with a different focus to another journal.

The corresponding or lead contributor must sign and send to StataCorp a copy of the Stata Journal Contributor Assignment Agreement before any article can be published. For multiauthored articles where one or more of the authors need to select a different copyright ownership on the form (for example, work made for hire, U.S. government work, work made for their employer), each author must sign a separate copy of the contributor agreement.

While you are waiting for a decision from the Journal, we are happy if you make the same material available via personal, institutional, or collective websites as a draft or working paper (or the equivalent) in your field. Such material should be flagged as under review by the Stata Journal. Papers published in the Stata Journal may be made available electronically according to the terms of the Contributor Assignment Agreement. We are happy if you distribute copies of your paper as reprints or photocopies in accordance with the Contributor Assignment Agreement. If the article is not accepted for publication, the Contributor Assignment Agreement will terminate and become void. You will be notified if this occurs.

Submission guide

Initial submission

Manuscript style
A PDF file or Word document is recommended for the initial submission. Other resource files of the article will be requested upon acceptance of the article.
For users of LaTeX or TeX, please note the Stata Journal provides its own document class and Stata output package along with examples for authors new to the Stata Journal. We recommend that you use these materials. See Getting started with the Stata Journal for instructions.
For users of Word or similar word-processing software, please follow the outline and details below, consult articles recently published in the Stata Journal, or see the example article from the Getting started with the Stata Journal page to see the preferred fonts and layout. Note that where the typewriter font is used in the published articles, the boldfaced font would be used in Word. Use of Word's styles for headers, paragraphs, etc., makes no difference, nor does the page size, margins, or line spacing.
Article structure
The standard article structure is as follows:
short author list/long author list
The short author list is only the author initial(s) and last name, and the long author list is the author initial(s) and last name, author affiliation(s), and city and state or country (spelled out with accents applied as necessary). An email address should be included for, at least, the corresponding author.
short title/long title
The short title will appear in the header of even-numbered pages, and the long title will be the title of the article and will appear in the table of contents.
The abstract states the purpose of the article and area of research. Abstracts must be able to stand alone from the full-text article. For this reason, fully cite references rather than merely supplying the author and date. Also, avoid introduction of acronyms in the abstract.
The first keyword will be the article tag (assigned by Stata Press); other keywords for indexing purposes should be added by the author(s). Community-contributed command names should be listed after the article tag. Plural terms and multiple concepts should be avoided.
PDF files are the preferred formats for graphs and line art, although EPS files are accepted. Figures should be included in the main text rather than at the end of the document and should be called out in the text prior to appearance. If your article is written in Word, you should submit your figures as separate PDF or EPS files. Avoid exporting figures and graphs to bitmaps, because even if images are outputted at 300 dpi, bitmaps can increase the size of the resulting file for printing and will lose the ability to be edited. (However, bitmaps will be allowed for photographs, which are used in, for example, the Stata Journal Editors' prize announcement but they should be outputted to 300 dpi.) Images should be submitted in black and white (grayscale). We recommend that graphs created in Stata use the sj scheme.
Tables should be included in the main text rather than at the end of the document. Tables should be called out in the text prior to appearance.
Stata results
Results should be reproducible. Begin examples by loading the data. Code should be written to respect a linesize of 80 characters.
math formulas
Formulas should be defined and follow a concise style. Different disciplines adhere to different notation styles; however, if the notation cannot be clearly interpreted, you may be asked to make changes. The bolding and font-selection guidelines are the following:

  • Matrices are capitalized and bolded; for instance, $\boldsymbol\Pi + \boldsymbol\Theta + \boldsymbol\Phi - \mathbf{B}$.
  • Vectors are lowercased and bolded; for instance, $\boldsymbol\pi + \boldsymbol\theta + \boldsymbol\phi - \mathbf{b}$.
  • Scalars are lowercased and nonbolded; for instance, $r_2 + c_1 - c_2$.
If you think it would be helpful for reviewers, you may include a separate plain-text file listing your symbols and their descriptions.
Sentence punctuation should not be used in formulas set off from the text.
Formulas in line with the text should use the solidus (/) instead of a horizontal line for fractional terms.
Nesting of grouping is square brackets, curly braces, and then parentheses, or [{()}].
equation numbering
Only those equations explicitly referred to in the text should be assigned an equation number.
Acknowledgments should be provided in a separate section at the end of the article and not on the title page. Thanks to those who provided assistance in research as well as funding details can be provided here.
The Stata Journal follows the Chicago Manual of Style for in-text citations and references. Thus, for works by two or three authors, all names are included in the text citation. However, for more than three authors, only the name of the first author is used, followed by "et al." in the text citation. Note that et al. is not italicized in text citations. In the references, the names of all authors are listed.
Do not use issue numbers in references, except if a journal is not continuously paginated.
Production staff will confirm this style is adhered to in the editorial process stage.
about the author(s)
Background information is provided on each author. This can include affiliations and interest, among other details.
Community-contributed software
Community-contributed software is often introduced in Stata Journal articles. If this is the case, you should submit the current version of the software with the article.
The community-contributed software package typically includes the following:
Your program names should not clash with those of previously written official commands or community-contributed programs. Typing search myprogname in Stata will tell you whether myprogname is already in use. (Naturally, if you previously used the name, say, by posting on the SSC archive a program that you are now writing up for the Stata Journal, that is not a problem.)
StataCorp requests that you avoid names that might be used in the future for new official commands. Short, simple words that can be found in an English dictionary are always attractive to StataCorp (for example, list, describe, generate), as are standard abbreviations or contractions for existing techniques (pca, anova, irt). It is, admittedly, difficult for authors to predict what StataCorp might do, or be thinking of doing, but if doubtful, please contact the editors in the first instance, who will be happy to take soundings on your behalf.
Also, the command name should be written in all lowercase letters because having a mixture of uppercase and lowercase can cause problems for Stata users across platforms. For ease in use, it is best to use all lowercase letters.
help files
A detailed help file explaining the features of your command and each option with examples should accompany your ado-file.
A do-file to reproduce the examples shown in the article should be included. If you are including figures in the article, see figures above for specific defaults, including the recommended scheme.
log files
The log files produced with the do-file should be included, preferably in plain-text (.log) form rather than SMCL (.smcl) form. If a command in the do-file is deliberately intended to produce an error message (for example, to illustrate error-trapping), then produce the log file with the nostop option of do.
Datasets used with examples in your article or help files should be included with the submission for reproducibility. If the dataset used in the examples cannot be distributed, we suggest including a sample dataset for testing purposes. A note mentioning the dataset being nonpublic should be included with the submission, preferably in the notes section of the readme.txt file and in the article where the dataset is used.
Also, the dataset name should be written in all lowercase letters because having a mixture of uppercase and lowercase can cause problems for Stata users across platforms.
readme.txt file
If you are submitting community-contributed software or code to reproduce examples in the manuscript, you must also submit a readme.txt file. Here is a template and here is an example.
Submissions should be sent in a Zip file to editors@stata-journal.com. Submissions will be acknowledged within a week of receipt.
When submitting your article for review, include the following:
  • A cover letter or email should provide full contact details for the corresponding author and any other relevant information for the submission.
  • A PDF file or Word document is recommended for the initial submission. If accepted for publication, the source files of the final version will be required.
  • The community-contributed code (ado-files, help files, do-files, datasets, and readme.txt file) should be included with the submission.
Submission to the Stata Journal implies that 1) the identical or substantially same material is not currently under review by another academic journal and 2) the authors will not submit such material to another journal before they receive a decision from the Stata Journal.

Review process

After a preliminary editorial review, articles will be sent to reviewers who have expertise in the subject of the article. The Stata Journal uses an anonymized review system. The review process generally takes 3–6 months. Authors may contact the editor at any time to check the status of their manuscript.

Accepted submission

Upon acceptance, the editor will request that you submit an archive of files to him and the contact at StataCorp. "Archive of files" means all LaTeX source files, except executable scripts, needed to re-create your article (.tex, .bib, .log, .pdf) and the final accepted versions of the community-contributed software files. Also needed is the Contributor Assignment Agreement. Submissions should be sent in a Zip file (with the extension renamed from .zip to .zippy) to editors@stata-journal.com.
Editorial process
Stata Press performs the following:
  • confirms the layout of the article adheres to the Stata Press style, which is similar to the Chicago Manual of Style with slight variations
  • checks grammar (American rather than British spellings of words)
  • reruns the code in the latest version of Stata
Galley proof
A galley proof is emailed to the corresponding author at the end of the editorial process.

Author copy of final version

The publisher of the Stata Journal, Sage Publications, will send the author copy to you when the article is available. If you do not receive the copy, you can contact them directly at authorqueries@sagepub.co.uk (the UK/ROW team) or at authorqueries@sagepub.com authorqueries@sagepub.com (the U.S. team).

Also be sure to visit https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/journal-author-gateway for additional information, including how to set up your ORCID.

Software update/correction submission

Software updates flag that software previously published in the Stata Journal or the Stata Technical Bulletin has been revised by the author(s). The revision could be, for example, a bug fix, an extension, a modernization, or some combination of these. Software updates are matched by an entry in Stata's .key files so that users who keep their Stata up to date are pointed to the latest version of any package published via the Stata Journal when they use search.

Manuscript style
The Software update submission should consist of at least one paragraph explaining the revision concisely and the updated community-contributed software files (.ado files, .sthlp or .hlp files, and any others). The text explaining the revision can be submitted in ASCII (preferred), LaTeX, or Word.
Community-contributed software
To submit a software update, download the official software from the Stata Journal website; see the Stata Journal FAQ for downloading instructions. Then, make the necessary changes to the files.
Submit the text explaining the update and the updated software files to editors@stata-journal.com.