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Information about theme issues/sections

A theme issue contains scientific papers that all focus on a highly-relevant and important topic in the area of software and system modeling. A theme issue may also cover a highly-innovative new topic where it is foreseeable that models will play an important role.

Please note: As these theme issues are published as part of the regular printed issues we usually use the wording "theme section" instead of "theme issue".

Typically two editors are responsible for putting a theme section together. We expect the editors to define the theme, select relevant literature for the theme that builds a solid integrated bases, to publish an open call for paper and actively solicit a number of respected researchers and practitioners from that area to submit papers. A potential source of prospective submitters is a conference or a series of high quality workshops that cover the desired theme. The theme editors (who may be the conference or workshop organizers) can invite the authors of the best papers in the conference or workshop to submit an extended and substantially enhanced version of their paper by a certain deadline and also run an open call for articles. Under the supervision of the theme editors the submitted papers will be rigorously reviewed and the accepted papers will be published in the theme section.

Requirements: The theme editors, their relatives, and their current research collaborators must not submit papers to be published in the theme section. Papers that were published in a respected conference before need to be considerably enhanced and extended and the differences have to be made clear in the article.

If you are interested in editing a theme section for the SoSyM journal, please contact the Editors-in-Chief.

Editors of theme sections write either a short editorial or submitt a complete overview article on the theme, describing the basic definitions, techniques, methods and results in that field, including a thorough overview of the literature. This article should in a first version be written and made available for the other papers, such that a common ground is defined.

Theme sections planned, in progress, or recently finished:

Editors-in-Chief Contact Information

Bernhard Rumpe

  • Email: (primary contact for theme sections)
  • Voice:  +49-241-80-21301
  • German Mail:
    Software Engineering
    RWTH Aachen University
    Ahornstraße 55
    D-52074 Aachen, Germany

Jeff Gray

  • Voice:  205-348-2847, Fax:  205-348-0219
  • Email:
  • U.S. Mail:
    Department of Computer Science
    University of Alabama
    Box 870290
    Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0290, USA

Outline of Submission/Review Process for Theme Sections:

  1. Interested editors submit a SoSyM theme section proposal, containing information about the contents, the paper solicitation process, a list of basic literature that has been published in the field and that the authors can rely on (including relevant recent SoSyM papers), a draft Call for Papers, and authors that will be invited to submit papers.
    Provided documents:
  2. If there is a related conference or workshop, then the following has to be described: the conference or workshop and its review process (e.g. acceptance rate, total number of papers), the number of potential papers including titles and authors, a proposed schedule and other helpful information. Papers accepted to the conference or workshop must have been through a thorough review process prior to their acceptance.
  3. Deadlines must be defined. A useful pattern is given below (x is in weeks):

    x-33 CfP for a SoSyM theme section, candidates may be papers with smaller versions already published in the conference/workshop.
    x-24 Papers are submitted to SoSyM via the online system Manuscript Central. The paper type is 'theme section paper' and the Editor-in-Chief (EiC) is Bernhard Rumpe. Authors also indicate that the theme editor is the preferred editor, and note that the paper is being submitted to the particular theme section. Beforehand a complete list of titles and authors of all expected papers is sent to the EiC.
    x-23 Reviewers are assigned by Program Committee Chair (who serves as editor of the theme section) via Manuscript Central. The time for a review is 30 days (counted from the day the reviewer accepted).
    x-16 Check status of reviews; reminders are sent if necessary to the editors, who send them on to reviewers.
    x-9 Reviews/acknowledgements are sent to authors by the Editor-in-Chief.
    x-2 Final versions arrive at SoSyM, via Manuscript Central (usually only minor changes can be handled in that time. Major revisions need extra time for another round of reviews.)
    x Editor or reviewers re-review minor changes and editor gives approval. Usually another full review cycle for major revisions has to be started.

  4. The CfP is published.
  5. The papers (as well as the reviews later) are submitted via the online system Manuscript Central.
  6. The theme editors act as supervisors for the papers. They assign at least three reviewers to each paper. These are acknowledged by the Editors-in-Chief. The theme editors also make the final recommendation. The editors can recommend that a paper be accepted (with or without minor revisions), rejected or resubmitted for another review after a major revision. The final decision is made by the Editor-in-Chief and he notifies the paper's contact author with the result of the review process, including reviewers' comments.
  7. The review process for theme papers doesn't differ from the regular process, but the reviewers for the theme papers can come from the program committee of a conference or workshop related to the theme section.
  8. Once a final decision for each submission is made, the ordering of the accepted papers in the theme section is decided by the theme editors. They also write an Editorial for the theme section.