The purpose of this study was to examine communication clarity in calls for papers issued by peer reviewed journals for special issues. I wanted to explore what could hinder and help guest editors to communicate their intent to potential contributors. I searched peer reviewed journals in the field of human resource management published by five leading publishers, including Emerald, Sage, Wiley, Taylor & Francis, and Elsevier. Forty-seven journals were identified, and the sample included 33 calls for papers that I examined using content analysis. The results showed that many guest editors include a problem statement; purpose statement including explicative statements and specifications; and research questions, topics, or themes. Based on this result, I created a composite profile that describes how guest editors typically craft their calls, including the average number of sources, topics, and paragraphs. I also identified eight additional tools guest editors use to increase clarity of their calls. Additionally, my analysis indicated that guest editors vary greatly in their approaches to crafting calls for papers. I identified a number of inconsistencies, inaccuracies, omissions, and redundancies that could confuse or discourage potential contributors. Journal editors could use the results of this study to examine their editorial strategies and practices and revise and improve their guidelines and templates related to special issues and their calls. Special issue guest editors might use the study results to increase the chances of receiving quality submissions.
In this paper, we propose a novel framework for a scholarly journal – a token‐curated registry (TCR). This model originates in the field of blockchain and cryptoeconomics and is essentially a decentralized system where tokens (digital currency) are used to incentivize quality curation of information. TCR is an automated way to create lists of any kind where decisions (whether to include N or not) are made through voting that brings benefit or loss to voters. In an academic journal, TCR could act as a tool to introduce community‐driven decisions on papers to be published, thus encouraging more active participation of authors/reviewers in editorial policy and elaborating the idea of a journal as a club. TCR could also provide a novel solution to the problems of editorial bias and the lack of rewards/incentives for reviewers. In the paper, we discuss core principles of TCR, its technological and cultural foundations, and finally analyse the risks and challenges it could bring to scholarly publishing.