Journal of Accounting Research

Cover image for Vol. 52 Issue 5

Edited By: JAR Editors: Philip G. Berger, Christian Leuz, and Douglas J. Skinner. Advisory Editor: Haresh Sapra. Coordinating Editor: Ray Ball. Editorial Manager: Lisa M. Johnson.

Impact Factor: 2.449

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2013: 6/91 (Business Finance)

Online ISSN: 1475-679X

Author Guidelines

Find out more about Journal of Accounting Research's Submission Statistics for 2014

Author Guidelines & Journal Policies


  • There is a fee of $500 for each submission.
  • To pay the submission fee, visit our payment page. If the fee is not received within a week of submission, the paper will be withdrawn from consideration.
  • The submission should comply with our data policy explained below.
  • Resubmissions should include separate documents that summarize your responses to comments made by the referee(s) and editor.
  • In order for submissions to be considered a revision, all submissions with a revise and resubmit decision must be submitted within 12 months of the decision letter. Any revisions submitted after 12 months will be considered a new submission, and need not receive the same editor or referee.
  • All author identification should be removed from the submission and any additional files. The names should be removed from the Properties section of the files.
  • At the time of initial submission, JAR uses iThenicate software to screen manuscripts for signs of plagiarism.

Data Policy

Effective January 2015, we require authors of empirical papers (including archival, experimental, field studies, surveys, and simulations) to submit the following as part of the initial submission:

  1. A description of which of the author(s) handled the data for the project, including a statement indicating whom among the authors takes responsibility for the data and their authenticity. We recommend that more than one author vouch for the data.
  2. A detailed description of how the raw data were obtained or generated, including data sources, the date(s) on which data were downloaded or obtained, and the instrument used to generate the data (e.g., for surveys or experiments).
  3. If the data are privately obtained from an organization (or organizations) on a proprietary basis, contact information for a representative of this organization who can confirm data were obtained as well as information about whether other researchers could, in principle, obtain the same data if they follow the same process as the authors (e.g., if access requires purchasing a non-standard dataset or access is subject to confidentiality requirements).
  4. A complete description of the steps necessary to collect and process the data used in the final analyses reported in the paper. For experimental papers, we require information about subject eligibility and/or selection, as well as any exclusion criteria.
  5. Prior to acceptance of the paper, the computer program used to convert the raw data into the dataset used for the final analysis plus a description that enables other researchers to understand and run this program. It should include all steps used to obtain the final dataset, including treatment of outliers, Winsorization, truncation, etc., and basic data manipulations prior to the analysis. This programming is in most circumstances not proprietary and greatly facilitates replication by other researchers. In cases where the authors believe that this program is proprietary or otherwise cannot be made publicly available, they should inform the editors upon submission.

The first three items should be reported on a data description sheet. The fourth item is typically provided in the paper itself. The data description sheet and the program will be posted on the JAR website after publication, along with any online appendix or datasets. Data, programs, and a research log should be maintained by a designated author (usually the corresponding author) for six years, consistent with National Science Foundation guidelines.

At this stage, we do not require that authors make the final dataset or programs performing the analyses publicly available. However, we strongly encourage authors to publicly provide or share data and programs to the extent reasonably possible.

Desk Rejection

The Journal follows a two-step review process. We first screen all new submissions to decide whether the topic of a paper and its results—taken at face value—are of sufficiently broad interest to our readership that the paper could potentially be published in the Journal. If the paper does not pass this hurdle, we will send a brief letter informing authors of the desk rejection and refund half the submission fee. The author(s) will not receive a referee report and cannot appeal this decision. If the paper passes the first hurdle, it will be sent out for review. This policy is intended to conserve the scarcest journal resource—reviewer time and effort—for those papers that we judge have a non-trivial chance of publication. In our view, this policy is also in the interest of the authors. There is little point in waiting for a referee report and editorial decision if the paper is likely to be rejected based on poor fit for the journal and/or because it is not of sufficiently broad interest to our readers.

Number of Reviewers

Normal journal policy is to use one reviewer. However, in those cases where papers are submitted by “internal” authors (current or recently departed Chicago Booth faculty or Ph.D. students; Chicago Booth Ph.D. theses), we use two reviewers to strengthen independence. In addition, we occasionally use two reviewers in situations in which the editors find a second opinion particularly valuable (for example, if the paper is in an area where specialized expertise is called for).

Resubmission of rejected papers

We do not accept resubmissions of previously rejected papers unless the authors deem the submission substantively a new paper. In such cases, the authors should inform the Journal upon submission that a prior version of the paper was rejected. Failure to do so results in an automatic rejection without refund of the submission fee. These resubmissions will be assigned to the editor who handled the original paper. If that editor decides that the submission is not a substantively new paper, our desk rejection policy applies.


In response to an increase in submissions and the fact that appeals consume a disproportionate amount of editorial time, we have introduced a formal policy for appeals. The general principle has been and remains that our decisions are final. However, we recognize that there can be circumstances (e.g., fundamental misunderstandings of facts) in which an appeal is justified. In those cases, we ask authors to submit a formal letter stating the reasons for the appeal. The letter should be concise (and not a response document). Considering the resources that appeals consume, we ask for a submission fee of $500. As a first step, the editors will evaluate the appeal correspondence and jointly assess the merits of the case. If we decide that the appeal and the authors’ arguments do not alter our decision, the previous rejection becomes final. If we decide that a reconsideration of the decision is warranted, we will send the paper to the original reviewer(s) as well as to a new reviewer. The new reviewer will advise us solely on the merits of the appeal. Based on the ensuing responses, the editors will make a final decision. No further appeal will then be considered.

Internet Appendix on JAR website

Additional analyses provided to the referee that are mentioned in the paper should be provided in the form of an Internet Appendix on JAR’s webpage.

Publication Ethics

The editors hereby affirm that it has been, and will continue to be, our policy to avoid coercive citation practices. While we retain professional discretion to suggest that authors cite particular papers, we will do so only when scientifically appropriate, and without regard to the cited paper or the journal in which it is published.

We also expect authors of submitted manuscripts to avoid strategic citation practices (e.g., deliberately avoiding the citation of their own papers when such papers are clearly related to the submitted manuscript).

At the point of submission, each author should reveal any material financial interests or conflicts of interest, direct or indirect, that might raise the question of bias in the work reported or the conclusions, implications, or opinions stated. For guidance on conflicts of interests, we refer authors to the guidelines developed by the ICMJE.

Style Instructions

  • Describe your research (for example, sampling criteria and tests) with sufficient precision to allow an interested, albeit energetic, reader to replicate it.
  • Make all tables and figures as self-contained as possible. That is, ensure that tables are readable on a stand-alone basis, without reference to the text or to other tables. Describe the sample, tests, variables and variable abbreviations in the relevant table headings, not in footnotes, in a stand-alone table, or in an appendix.
  • Include an abstract of less than 150 words in the paper.
  • Number footnotes consecutively and place them at the bottom of the manuscript pages, not at the end of the manuscript.
  • Cite references in the text as follows: 'Jones and Smith [1992] find that. . .' or 'Previous research findings in this area are inconclusive (e.g., Jones and Smith [1995], Black et al. [1970])'. Authors should ensure that there is a one-to-one correspondence between references cited in the text and those listed in the reference list (names and years also should correspond). List the references at the end of the manuscript text, after appendices but before tables and figures. Authors should adhere to the following guide for references:

For books

JAGGER, M., and K. RICHARDS. Healthy Living for Aged Rock Stars. 4th ed. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2006.

For journal articles

JONES, A., and J. PEREZ. 'The Effect of Accounting Information on Liquidity Risk: The Case of Australian Bean Counters.' Journal of Antiquated Accounting 12 (1978): 123-456.

For unpublished work

JONES, A., and F. BLACK. 'The Role of Scurrilous Rodents in Experimental Auditing Research,' Unpublished paper, University of Nottingthing, 2007. Available at _id=0000000.

  • Use the active voice where possible. For example, write 'We define cash flow as. . .' and not 'Cash flow is defined as... .'
  • Do not write the paper as if it were a mystery story, that is, focus on your major results and their implications as early as possible in the narrative; do not take readers down tortured paths you may have followed.

Early View

Journal of Accounting Research is covered by Wiley-Blackwell’s Early View service. Early View articles are complete full-text articles published online in advance of their publication in a printed issue. Articles are therefore available as soon as they are ready, rather than having to wait for the next scheduled print issue. Early View articles are complete and final. They have been fully reviewed, revised and edited for publication, and the authors? final corrections have been incorporated. Because they are in final form, no changes can be made after online publication. The nature of Early View articles means that they do not yet have volume, issue or page numbers, so Early View articles cannot be cited in the traditional way. They are therefore given a Digital Object Identifier (DOI), which allows the article to be cited and tracked before it is allocated to an issue. After print publication, the DOI remains valid and can continue to be used to cite and access the article.

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) or the Austrian Science Fund (FWF) you will be given the opportunity to publish your article under a CC-BY license supporting you in complying with your Funder requirements.  For more information on this policy and the Journal’s compliant self-archiving policy please visit: