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Instructions for authors

The Journal of Linguistic Geography (JLG) is an exclusively web-based, refereed journal that publishes original research reports based on the geographical distribution of language production data, either oral or written, or perceptual data from contemporary or historical sources. Articles with substantive content are preferred over those that are solely argumentative; those that synthesize or reanalyze a number of research findings on substantive issues will also be considered along with those that explain and exemplify new research techniques. Conforming to scientific methodology, the reported findings should be fully replicable from the information provided. Contributions may be submitted from all countries. All submissions should be submitted electronically in both a Word and a PDF version to

The usual language of publication is English, although authors who cannot make English versions available should communicate with the editors. Authors, particularly those whose first language is not English, may wish to have their English-language manuscripts checked by a native speaker before submission. This is optional, but may help to ensure that the academic content of the paper is fully understood by the editor and any reviewers. Cambridge offers a service which authors can learn about herePlease note that the use of any of these services is voluntary, and at the author's own expense. Use of these services does not guarantee that the manuscript will be accepted for publication, nor does it restrict the author to submitting to a Cambridge published journal.

Submission of an article is taken to imply that it has not been previously published or is not being considered for publication elsewhere. If an author is publishing a related article, this fact should be stated.

Copyright. Contributors of accepted articles will retain copyright and sign a license to publish with Cambridge University Press, to help protect their material, particularly in the U.S.A.

Manuscript preparation and style

Although the journal will appear in a web format only, manuscripts should generally not exceed 40 double-spaced pages. The entire manuscript — including abstract, endnotes, references, and tables— must be double-spaced and numbered consecutively. For the initial submission, figures, map, audio, and data files should not be embedded (see below). The article should be arranged as follows:

Title Page (page 1). To facilitate blind reviews, all indication of authorship must be limited to this page. Other pages must show only the short title plus page number in the upper right corner. The title page includes (a) full title, (b) names and affiliations of all authors, (c) mailing address and phone number of the lead author (d) email address of the lead author), (e) short title of less than 50 characters, (f) a competing interest declaration that relates to all authors (see below for guidance on what this should look like). Abstract (page 2). Include the full title and the abstract. Abstracts should not exceed 150 words.

Competing interest declaration: All authors must include a competing interests declaration in their title page. This declaration will be subject to editorial review and may be published in the article. Competing interests are situations that could be perceived to exert an undue influence on the content or publication of an author’s work. They may include, but are not limited to, financial, professional, contractual or personal relationships or situations. If the manuscript has multiple authors, the author submitting must include competing interest declarations relevant to all contributing authors. Example wording for a declaration is as follows: “Competing interests: Author A is employed at company B. Author C owns shares in company D, is on the Board of company E and is a member of organisation F. Author G has received grants from company H.” If no competing interests exist, the declaration should state “Competing interests: The author(s) declare none”.

Acknowledgments (page 2). Place below the abstract. Use this section to indicate any grant support, substantial assistance in the preparation of the article, or any other author notes.

Text (page 3). Use a 5-character paragraph indent. Do not hyphenate words or justify the right margin. Underscore material that is to be italicized in print. Glosses should be placed within single quotation marks. Please use the DoulosSIL font for phonetic transcriptions.
Sections, if used, should be marked off by numerals (1., 2., 3., etc…) and the section title should appear after the numeral in caps (e.g., 1. BACKGROUND) on a separate line above that section. Subsections should be given in numerals with the subsection title in title case (e.g., 1.1 Early Studies) and also placed on a separate line above the subsection. Avoid second-level subsections if possible (e.g., 1.1.2), and do not insert blank lines between the section or subsection headings and the first line of text.

References are to be made in the text (not in the endnotes) by giving in parentheses the name of the author, year of publication, and, where relevant, the page(s) referred to: (Vincent, 1982:90-91). If the author's name is part of the text, the following form should be used: 'Vincent (1982) listed several....' For multi-authored works, only the first citation should list all authors: (Weinreich, Labov & Herzog, 1968). In subsequent citations, only the first name should be given, followed by 'et al.': (Weinreich et al., 1968). Separate works referred to in the same parentheses should be listed in alphabetical order; those by the same author should be separated by commas, and those by different authors by semicolons: (López Morales, 1981; Vincent, 1981,1982). Initials should be used (before the author's name) only when it is necessary to distinguish between two or more authors with the same surname referred to in the same article. All works referred to in the text must be listed in the reference section, double-spaced and in alphabetical order. All references should follow the "Unified Style Sheet for Linguistics" available at: or at the LinguistList here:

Here are examples of references taken from that source:
Blevins, Juliette. 2004. Evolutionary phonology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Casali, Roderic F. 1998. Predicting ATR activity. Chicago Linguistic Society (CLS) 34(1). 55-68.
Chomsky, Noam. 1986. Knowledge of language. New York: Praeger.
Coetsem, Frans van. 2000. A general and unified theory of the transmission process in language contact. Heidelberg: Winter.
Franks, Steven. 2005. Bulgarian clitics are positioned in the syntax. (17 May, 2006.)
Iverson, Gregory K. 1983. Korean /s/. Journal of Phonetics 11. 191-200.
Iverson, Gregory K. 1989. On the category supralaryngeal. Phonology 6. 285-303.
Johnson, Kyle, Mark Baker & Ian Roberts. 1989. Passive arguments raised. Linguistic Inquiry 20. 219-251.
Lahiri, Aditi (ed.). 2000. Analogy, leveling, markedness: Principles of change in phonology and morphology (Trends in Linguistics 127). Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.
McCarthy, John J. & Alan S. Prince. 1999. Prosodic morphology. In John A. Goldsmith (ed.), Phonological theory: The essential readings, 238-288. Malden, MA & Oxford: Blackwell.
Murray, Robert W. & Theo Vennemann. 1983. Sound change and syllable structure in Germanic phonology. Language 59(3). 514-528.
Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd edn. 1989. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Pedersen, Johan. 2005. The Spanish impersonal se-construction: Constructional variation and change. Constructions 1, (3 April, 2007.)
Rissanen, Matti. 1999. Syntax. In Roger Lass (ed.), Cambridge History of the English Language, vol. 3, 187-331. Cambridge & New York: Cambridge University Press.
Stewart, Thomas W., Jr. 2000. Mutation as morphology: Bases, stems, and shapes in Scottish Gaelic. Columbus, OH: The Ohio State University dissertation.
Webelhuth, Gert (ed.). 1995. Government and binding theory and the minimalist program: Principles and parameters in syntactic theory. Oxford: Blackwell.
Yu, Alan C. L. 2003. The morphology and phonology of infixation. Berkeley, CA: University of California dissertation.

Endnotes may be used when more than a simple citation is required. Notes should be numbered consecutively throughout the text and typed together on a separate page preceding the reference section. Do not use endnote formatting of any sort. Place a superscript number manually in the text at the appropriate point.

Tables must appear as a unit following the reference section. Each table should be typed double-spaced, on a separate sheet, numbered consecutively with an Arabic numeral and a short title. All tables must be cited in the text. Tables published in JLG can be sorted by the user. If there are any columns or rows that, if altered, would cause the data to lose its meaning, please indicate this with a note accompanying the table, so that the columns or rows in question will be formatted as fixed.

Figures must appear as a unit following the tables and must be ready for electronic reproduction. All figures must be cited in the text.

General Cambridge instructions for artwork may be found at:

Maps. Maps must appear as a unit following the figures and must be ready for reproduction. JLG will make extensive use of high-quality, full-color maps such as those that are generated by GIS software programs. These maps should be of sufficient detail and quality, e.g., in vector file formats, such as Scalable Vector Graphics or Encapsulated PostScript, for final publication so that they may be zoomed in on, allowing the reader to focus on details. If such maps are not available to authors, the Cambridge Production Team may be able to assist in converting them into the best format possible for publication. Such high-quality maps need not be transmitted in the initial submission, but the editors will require such submission as soon as an article is accepted for publication, even those accepted pending revision. Submission of high-quality maps in separate files is strongly encouraged, however, on first submission.

Audio files. JLG will also encourage the use of audio files, and these may be accessed by the reader at any point in an article or from a map or other graphic. These should also be high-quality, but they should not be embedded in the original submission, although an indication (e.g., "Put audio file #1 here") should be made in the article or on the map, and the caption for a figure with audio files must specify how to play that file (ie mouse over a word to hear the associated audio file).
Submission of these files separately is required with initial submission.

Data files. In some cases extensive data files (e.g., spreadsheets) of geographical coordinate, acoustic, or other data may be appropriately included and are too large to include as tables. These should be indicated with a place marker in the text and submitted as separate files. Submission of these files separately is required with initial submission. Data files published in JLG can be sorted by the user. If there are any columns or rows that, if altered, would cause the data to lose its meaning, please indicate this with a note accompanying the file, so that the columns or rows in question will be formatted as fixed.


First proofs, in the form of a static PDF of the typeset HTML version of the article, will be sent by email to the lead author, who will be expected to correct and return them to Cambridge within 3 days of receipt. Proofreading of interactive features in the article such as scalable maps, figures and sound files will be the responsibility of the Editors.


The lead author will receive a high-quality static PDF of his or her article without charge.

Open Access

Please visit for information on our open access policies, compliance with major funding bodies, and guidelines on depositing your manuscript in an institutional repository.

Download the Journal of Linguistic Geography instructions for contributors here: Download Instruction for Contributors in PDF. (40 KB).

Last updated 3 January 2020