Soil Use and Management

Cover image for Vol. 32 Issue 4

Edited By: Michael J Goss and Deputy Editors Amarilis de Varennes and Fiona Nicholson

Impact Factor: 1.823

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2015: 12/34 (Soil Science)

Online ISSN: 1475-2743

Associated Title(s): European Journal of Soil Science

Author Guidelines

Editorial Policy. Soil Use and Management provides an international forum for original papers in the field of practical uses of soil science. Papers are accepted on the understanding that the work has been submitted exclusively to the Journal and has not been published elsewhere unless otherwise stated. The Journal publishes research papers, critical reviews & short communications conforming to the same layout as longer papers. Papers of advanced educational value will also be considered and comments on papers written in the Journal are welcome. A broad view will be taken on 'use' and 'management' covering agriculture, horticulture, forestry, amenity and other non agricultural soil environments. Suitable topics will include soil-crop interactions, environmental protection, sustainable land use, soil conservation, pollution control, restoration and reclamation of land, evaluation of soil surveys and development of methods. Papers should show how research has contributed to the understanding or solution of practical problems.

Note that investigations related to metal or metalloid contaminated soils should not rely entirely on spiking uncontaminated soils and should be confirmed by experiments with material from sites with long-term contamination.

Please also note that the use of fertilisation to describe the application of fertiliser or other sources of plant nutrients should be avoided.

Guidance to authors who are planning to submit a paper to the journal Soil Use and Management.

Soil Use and Management provides an international forum for those applying scientific principles to understand and solve important soil problems as they affect crop production and environmental issues. Soil Use and Management aims to communicate an understanding of management techniques for the sustainable use of land. Papers taking a broad view of 'use' and 'management' covering agriculture, forestry and amenity provision are accepted as well as ones concerned with the development of techniques for monitoring soil conditions.

The journal to which you are submitting your manuscript employs a plagiarism detection system. By submitting your manuscript to this journal you accept that your manuscript may be screened for plagiarism against previously published works.

Steve Jarvis and Donald Davidson, Editors of European Journal of Soil Science and Soil Use and Management gave a presentation on How to Write for Soil Use and Management and European Journal of Soil Science at the 19th World Congress of Soil Science in Brisbane, Australia in August 2010. Authors should use the presentation, which can be found here, to optimize the chance of acceptance.

Authors can check the potential suitability of a paper for the journal by asking the following questions. To be suitable, the answer should be YES to all these questions.

1. Is the paper a significant contribution to knowledge about the use or management of soil?
2. Is it based on sound scientific principles and factually correct?
3. Has the subject matter general significance to an international readership? (ie Does it have more than just local interest?)
4. Is the abstract informative and does it summarize the main results and conclusions?
5. Are the aims and scope of the paper clearly stated in the introduction?
6. Is the paper set in the context of the relevant international literature in the subject area?
7. Does the sampling design incorporate adequate replication in order to address the stated objectives?
8. Are the results presented clearly and in sufficient detail?
9. Do the conclusions follow from them and are they related to the aims as set out in the introduction?
10. Does the conclusion indicate the contribution of the paper within the wider international scientific literature?
11. Is the paper well organised and concise?
12. Is the paper written in good English?
13. Are all the figures and tables clear, with appropriate statistical treatment and not duplicating one another?

The ORCID iD is a unique and persistent identifier that distinguishes you from every other researcher – by connecting you with your research contributions and affiliations. Free to use and register for, an ORCID iD increases the discoverability of your research outputs, and helps alleviate mistaken identity. You have full control of your ORCID record, and can control what information is connected and how it is shared.

As part of our commitment to supporting authors at every step of the publishing process, from 1st January 2017 Soil Use and Management requires the submitting author (only) to provide an ORCID iD when submitting their manuscript. This takes around 2 minutes to complete. Find more information.


Papers should be submitted online at Full upload instructions and support are available on the site via a 'Get Help Now' button. Please note that if your submission exceeds 5 Mb it may slow down the review process. If this is the case please consider using the lower resolution images and/ or black and white charts and graphs. For more information please contact If this presents problems, you can submit your paper as Word files by e-mail to Neither ScholarOne Manuscripts nor the e-mail system will accept LaTex files; if you wish to use LaTex you must first convert the file to PDF format before sending it. Whichever file format you use, the main text of the paper including tables must be a single continuous file.  If neither electronic system is available to you, then please send two printed copies of your paper to the Editor by regular mail; please also include a CD containing the relevant files.

Papers must be no longer than 5000 words including references and short communications should not exceed 1000 words. Authors will be asked to reduce papers that are significantly longer than this. Only in exceptional cases such as with reviews will longer papers be considered. All papers should be structured to include:

Title page, succinct title containing keywords, with author(s) names and affiliations and e-mail address of the corresponding author, and short running head title of no more than 50 characters.

Abstract, no more than 250 words accurately and informatively summarizing the scope and main findings of the paper. Followed by up to 6 appropriate keywords;

Introduction, giving the context of the paper with a short review and clear objectives;

Main text, preferably subdivided by headings such as Methods, Results, Discussion, and a short Conclusion (not for repetition of Abstract).

Three categories of subheading are available: On left in bold with new paragraph, on left in Italics with new paragraph; on left in Italics with stop and next sentence of text running on.

Soil Use and Management requires that all authors disclose any potential sources of conflict of interest. Any interest or relationship, financial or otherwise, that might be perceived as influencing an author’s objectivity is considered a potential source of conflict of interest. These must be disclosed when directly relevant or indirectly related to the work that the authors describe in their manuscript. Potential sources of conflict of interest include but are not limited to patent or stock ownership, membership of a company board of directors, membership of an advisory board or committee for a company, and consultancy for or receipt of speaker’s fees from a company. The existence of a conflict of interest does not preclude publication in this journal.

If the authors have no conflict of interest to declare, they must also state this at submission. It is the responsibility of the corresponding author to review this policy with all authors and to collectively list in the cover letter to the Editor, in the manuscript (under the Acknowledgment section), and in the online submission system ALL pertinent commercial and other relationships.

English-language editing

The Journal receives a very large number of papers that require English language editing, the amount of which ranges from trivial to extensive. The Editors are very aware that they have the good fortune to be native speakers of English and for many years we have always been willing to help colleagues in matters of language. However, the number of papers is now so large that we very much regret that we find ourselves unable to do more than a very limited amount of such work, without causing very significant delays to papers. Where more extensive correction is required, then we shall increasingly refer authors to the services of professional linguists or, if the possibility exists, to the services of a colleague who is a native or near-native speaker of English. Authors might also be able obtain help from professional agencies (see, for example: of which there are many in different parts of the world. Note, however, that in using professional linguists, translators and similar services, authors should ensure that the service provider is familiar with the appropriate scientific terminology, otherwise further major editing could be required. Authors should also consider carefully whether they wish to have such language editing done before they submit their paper.

An increasing number of referees are refusing to review papers where there are significant problems with the English. At worst, this leads to immediate rejection; at best, it leads to serious delays in the assessment of papers.

Units, Symbols and Spelling. Use SI units except t instead of Mg; cm and year are accepted. Units should be printed in upright type (e.g. kg/ha).Symbols for measured or calculated variables should be in italics, e.g. K for hydraulic conductivity. English spelling should follow the Concise Oxford English Dictionary.

Tables. Prepare tables separately from the text with each table on a separate page and a complete list of captions on one page.(e.g. Table 1. Nitrogen uptake by wheat). Tables can be submitted toward the end of the main text document or as a separate file. Design tables so that they will fit either into single columns or across two columns; avoid larger tables. Tables should be self explanatory without reference to the text, using footnotes (a,b, etc.). Numerical values in columns should be aligned on the decimal points. Means should be presented with relevant standard errors and/or statistically significant differences, quoting probability (P) levels. Values quoted should not include significant figures beyond those denoting reasonable accuracy. Do not separate columns within tables by vertical lines.

Figures. The text and diagrams for a paper should not be supplied in the same document; instead they should be submitted as separate documents and labelled correctly and clearly. Figures should not repeat data in tables. Images of figures should be good quality and can be single column (83 mm), double column (175 mm). Captions should be listed on a separate sheet (e.g. Figure 1.The effect of cover crops on measured nitrate leaching after barley). In text refer to Figure 1. Figures should be the intended final size with lettering and symbols 2-3 mm in height, and lines at least 0.33 mm in width. Preferred symbols on graphs are ○ • □ ▪ ▵ ▴.

Black and white photographs are acceptable if they illustrate essential points. They should be at the intended final size with any required lettering or numbering (e.g. scale bar) already inserted.

Data that is integral to the paper must be made available in such a way as to enable readers to replicate, verify and build upon the conclusions published in the paper. Any restriction on the availability of this data must be disclosed at the time of submission. Data may be included as part of the main article where practical. We recommend that data for which public repositories are widely used, and are accessible to all, should be deposited in such a repository prior to publication. The appropriate linking details and identifier(s) should then be included in the publication and where possible the repository, to facilitate linking between the journal article and the data. If such a repository does not exist, data should be included as supporting information to the published paper or authors should agree to make their data available upon reasonable request.

Colour. In the event that an author is not able to cover the costs of reproducing colour figures in colour in the printed version of the journal, Soil Use and Management offers authors the opportunity to reproduce colour figures in colour for free in the online version of the article (but they will still appear in black and white in the print version).  Authors who feel it is essential that their diagrams be reproduced in colour on the printed copy and who cannot meet the costs should contact the Editor.

Authors using colour in the print issue may be charged and should complete a form which can be downloaded here. Details of charges are given on the form.

Authors should send the completed colour work form to:

Customer Services (OPI)
John Wiley & Sons Ltd, European Distribution Centre
New Era Estate
Oldlands Way
Bognor Regis
West Sussex
PO22 9NQ
(Please note electronic versions of this form can't be accepted)

References. Do not cite unnecessarily and then only if you have read the work. Citations of authors in the text should be made by naming up to the first two authors, or if there are more, using the first name and et al. and the year of publication. Where there is more than one reference, they should be listed in date order and separated by semicolons, e.g. (Goulding, 2000; Webster & Catt, 1986; Bergstrom et al., 2005). Two or more papers by the same author(s) in the same year are differentiated by 'a', 'b', etc. placed after the year. Reference to unpublished reports and papers should only be made if essential, and must include addresses at which readers can obtain or consult the document(s). References must be listed in the Reference List at the end of the paper, conforming to the following examples:

Batjes, N.H. 2005. Organic carbon stocks in the soils of Brazil. Soil Use and Management, 21, 22-24.

Thomsen, I.K. & Christensen, B.T. 2004. Yields of wheat, and soil C and N contents following long-term incorporation of straw and catch crops. Soil Use and Management 15, 195-200.

Beegle, D., Lanyon, L.E. & Sims, J.T. 2002. Nutrient balance. In: Agriculture, Hydrology & Water Quality (eds P.Haygarth & S.Jarvis), CAB International Wallingford UK, pp. 171-192.

Whitehead, D.C. 1995. Grassland Nitrogen. CAB International Wallingford UK.

Defra. 2004b. Developing measures to promote catchment sensitive farming. Available at: ; accessed 6/3/2006.

Reference to papers published on-line but not yet printed should quote the DOI number after the normal reference

References in Articles. We recommend the use of a tool such as EndNote or Reference Manager for reference management and formatting.
EndNote reference styles can be searched for here:

Reference Manager reference styles can be searched for here:


Electronic version. Accepted papers are typeset from an electronic version which, details of which will be confirmed when the paper is finally accepted. Authors are advised to keep a backup file until their paper appears on-line.

Electronic files of figures for accepted papers. The preferred electronic file type for figures is vector-format encapsulated post script (EPS) because these images are scaleable and therefore do not lose quality in the online PDF. All line drawings or photographs with added labeling should be supplied in EPS format. Photographs without any labeling should be supplied in TIFF format at 300 dots per inch minimum. If line drawings cannot be supplied as EPS files then they must be in TIFF format with a minimum resolution of 800 dpi. These resolutions also apply to any images embedded into an EPS file. Please click here for our artwork guidelines. Please also see the illustration submission section in the 'author resources' section of the author services site.

Supporting Information. Wiley-Blackwell is able to host online approved supporting information that authors submit with their paper. Supporting information must be important, ancillary information that is relevant to the parent article but which does not or cannot appear in the printed edition of the journal. See here for further information.

Online production tracking via Blackwell's Author Services. Author Services enables authors to track their article - once it has been accepted - through the production process to publication online and in print. Authors can check the status of their articles online and choose to receive automated e-mails at key stages of production. They will receive an e-mail with a unique link that enables them to register and have their article automatically added to the system. Please ensure that a complete e-mail address is provided when submitting the manuscript. Visit for more details on online production tracking and for a wealth of resources including FAQs and tips on article preparation, submission and more.

Open Access Journal - GEO. We work together with the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) and Wiley open access journal, Geo: Geography and Environment, to enable rapid publication of good quality papers that are outside the scope of our journal. Authors of papers rejected by our journal as unsuitable on the grounds of scope or space may be offered the option of having their manuscript, along with any related peer reviews, automatically transferred for consideration by the Geo editorial team. Authors will not need to reformat or rewrite their manuscript at this stage, and publication decisions will be made a short time after the transfer takes place. Geo will consider submissions from across the spectrum of geographical and environmental research, which reach the standard acceptable for publication. Geo is a fully open access journal and article publication fees apply. For more information please go to

Proofs and Offprints. Page proofs are supplied to authors for the correction of printing errors; all other corrections must be kept to the absolute minimum to minimize expense. Authors should give the e-mail address to which proofs should be sent. An e-mail alert will be sent containing a link to a website from where the proof may be downloaded as a pdf file. Authors will be provided with an electronic 'offprint' of their paper. Details of an online ordering system for purchasing paper offprints will be provided with the page proofs.

Early View Publication. Articles are published online before printed publication with the Wiley-Blackwell Early View service at These articles are complete and final: they have been reviewed, revised and edited for publication and no changes can be made after online publication. Because no volume, issue or page numbers have been given, online articles are differentiated by their Digital Object Identifier (DOI), which allows them to be cited and tracked before allocation to an issue. After print publication, the DOI can continue to be cited and used for locating the article.

License agreement and open access

If your paper is accepted, the author identified as the formal corresponding author for the paper will receive an email prompting them to login into Author Services; where via the Wiley Author Licensing Service (WALS) they will be able to complete the license agreement on behalf of all authors on the paper.

For authors signing the copyright transfer agreement

If the OnlineOpen option is not selected the corresponding author will be presented with the copyright transfer agreement (CTA) to sign. The terms and conditions of the CTA can be previewed in the samples associated with the Copyright FAQs below:

CTA Terms and Conditions

For authors choosing OnlineOpen

If the OnlineOpen option is selected the corresponding author will have a choice of the following Creative Commons License Open Access Agreements (OAA):

Creative Commons Attribution License OAA
Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License OAA
Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial -NoDerivs License OAA

To preview the terms and conditions of these open access agreements please visit the Copyright FAQs hosted on Wiley Author Services and visit

If you select the OnlineOpen option and your research is funded by The Wellcome Trust and members of the Research Councils UK (RCUK) you will be given the opportunity to publish your article under a CC-BY license supporting you in complying with Wellcome Trust and Research Councils UK requirements. For more information on this policy and the Journal’s compliant self-archiving policy please visit: