Submission Guidelines

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Article Types

Research Articles

Research articles must describe the outcomes and application of unpublished original research. These should make a substantial contribution to knowledge and understanding in any aspect human or animal epidemics (including pandemics) and bioterrorism including prevention, governance, detection, mitigation and response. We publish work on risk analysis, epidemiology, modelling, surveillance, phylogenetics, intelligence, strategic foresight, forecasting, ‘One Health’, policy, governance and law, ethics and first responder preparedness. Manuscripts should be supported by relevant figures and tabulated data. A 300 word structured abstract should be included. The main article should contain an introduction, methods, results and discussion section, and up to 4 tables and 4 figures. Research articles should be no more than 3500 words in length, with up to 60 references.

This section is peer reviewed.


Book reviews - we accept book reviews of books relevant to the scope of the journal. Book reviews should be less than 1000 words.

This section is peer reviewed.

Rapid Reports and Perspectives From the Field

Rapid reports (including outbreaks) - short analytical reports of no more than 2000 words and 25 references, describing a current outbreak or biosecurity event of concern. This could include analysis of an epidemic curve, attack rates, risk factors, field vaccine effectiveness, geospatial risk, phylogenetics or other aspect of outbreak investigation. If accepted, we will publish these within 1–3 months.  Rapid Reports will be reviewed by members of our editorial team who are almuni of a recognised Field Epidemiology Training Program, and who understand the science of outbreak investigation. Our editors will work with you to develop your Rapid Report into a valuable public health resource for others.

Perspectives from the field - we seek to publish field perspectives from first responders in health, emergency management, defence, law enforcement or other relevant sectors in biosecurity. We believe this is a critical aspect of knowledge which is often overlooked or undocumented. Persepctives from the field aim to enhance understanding of factors that affect response capability. This could include perspectives on inter-operability, enablers and barriers to response, systems issues, occupational health and safety of responders, cultural contexts, community acceptability, a specific response or other issue of operational concern. Perspectives should be no more than 1000 words, with up to 15 references.

This section is peer reviewed.

Watching Briefs

Watching briefs (outbreaks of concern) - descriptive information about current outbreaks of no more than 1500 words can be submitted using a prescribed template. These watching briefs are situation briefs that are useful for others in the field and for better understanding the outbreak. Feedback from operational stakeholders who manage or respond to outbreaks is that they are often too busy to review literature or obtain relevant background information to assist them with acute response. Unlike the Rapid Report option, which is a traditional analytical outbreak investigation report, Watching Briefs are intended as a critical analysis and rapid resource for public health or other first responders in the field on topical, serious or current outbreaks, and provide a digest of relevant information including key features of an outbreak, comparison with past outbreaks and a literature review. They can be completed by responders to an outbreak, or by anyone interested in an outbreak using public or open source data, including news reports. See below for making a open source data request.

Epidemic or outbreak analysis is complex, and analysis is usually restricted to members of the responding team. However, other experts can add new or critical inisghts to any given outbreak. We believe in the power of collective critical thinking in solving complex epidemic problems. In a new concept for journal publishing, we aim to harness the collective analytical minds of the world, and invite trainees or alumni of Field Epidemiology Training Programs, as well as other personnel involved in public health or outbreak response, to submit a Watching Brief on any global outbreak, using original field data (if directly involved in the outbreak) or using open source data (if not directly involved in the specific outbreak). Watching briefs are intended to be a resource for public health and other first responders in the field, who may not have the time to review past outbreaks or disease details.  They are also meant to enhance critical analysis of unusual outbreaks. They can be completed by people directly involved in an outbreak response or by using publicly available data, according to our prescribed template.  Watching briefs will be reviewed by members of our editorial team who are almuni of a recognised Field Epidemiology Training Program, and who understand the science of outbreak investigation. Our editors will work with you to develop your Watching Brief into a valuable public health resource for others.  You can use original data from the outbreak, available open source data such as HealthMap or  request open source outbreak data from 2016 onward, collected in our outbreak database, Epiwatch. To make a request, email and specify the disease or outbreak, start and end dates, and location (at a minimum, country). If accepted, we will publish these within 1–3 months.  

This section is peer reviewed.

Editorials and Commentaries

Editorials may be solicited or unsolicited. They should reflect upon or critique a specific ‘happening’ such as a release of a major study or other notable occurrence related to the journal’s focus. Authors interested in submitting a commentary piece should discuss the content with the editor before submitting a manuscript. Editorial or commentary articles should be no longer than 2000 words in length, with up to 30 references.

Letters to the Editor

Book Reviews

Book reviews - we accept book reviews of books relevant to the scope of the journal. Book reviews should be less than 1000 words.


CBRN News - the latest news on chemical, biological, radiation and nuclear (CBRN) events will be published by our CBRN expert.  We do not acceot submissions in this category, but if you have news of interest, please contact our CBRN Editor, A/Prof David Heslop

Author Guidelines

Submissions should be made electronically through this website. Once submitted, the author can track the submission and communicate with the editors via the online journal management system.

Please ensure that you consider the following guidelines when preparing your manuscript.

Failure to do so may delay the processing of your submission.

All word limits exclude referencing and citation. Where relevant, approvals from human or animal research ethics committees or institutional review boards should be cited in the methods.



Title page
To ensure blind peer review, please only list the title and abstract on the submitted manuscript file.

The names of all authors, affiliations, contact details, biography (optional) and the corresponding author details must be completed online as part of the submission process.

Author names should include a forename and a surname. Forenames cannot include only initials.

  • J. Bloggs is not preferred. The full name, Joe Bloggs is required (this will enhance the 'findability' of your publication)

The affiliation should ideally include ‘Department, Institution, City, Country’, however only the Institution and Country are mandatory.

Research articles must have the main text prefaced by an abstract of no more than 250 words summarising the main arguments and conclusions of the article. This must have the 

Research articles must have the main text prefaced by an abstract of no more than 350 words summarising the aims, methods, results, and conclusions of the article. This must have the heading ‘Abstract’ and be easily identified from the start of the main text.

A list of up to five Keywords must be placed below the abstract. The Abstract and Keywords should also be added to the metadata when making the initial online submission.

Main text
The body of the submission should be structured in a logical and easy to follow manner. A clear introduction should allow non-specialists in the subject an understanding of the publication and a background of the issue(s) involved. Aims, methods, results, discussion and conclusion may then follow to provide details of the information and research being presented.

Supplementary Files (optional)
Any supplementary/additional files that should link to the main publication must be listed, with a corresponding number, title and (optional) description. Ideally the supplementary files are also cited in the main text.

e.g. Supplementary file 1: Appendix. Scientific data related to the experiments.

Note: additional files will not be typeset so must be provided in their final form. They will be assigned a DOI and linked to from the publication.

Ethics and consent (if applicable)
Research involving human subjects, human material, or human data, must have been performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki. Where applicable, studies must have been approved by an appropriate ethics committee and the authors should include a statement within the article text detailing this approval, including the name of the ethics committee and reference number of the approval. The identity of the research subject(s) should be anonymised whenever possible. For research involving human subjects, informed consent to participate in the study must be obtained from participants (or their legal guardian).

Experiments using animals must follow national standards of care. For further information, click here.

Acknowledgements (optional)
Any acknowledgements must be headed and in a separate paragraph, placed after the main text but before the reference list.

Funding Information (optional)
Should the research have received a funding grant then the grant provider and grant number should be detailed. 

Competing interests
If any of the authors have any competing interests then these must be declared. A short paragraph should be placed before the references. Guidelines for competing interests can be found here. If there are no competing interests to declare then the following statement should be present: The author(s) has/have no competing interests to declare.

Authors' contributions (optional)
A sentence or a short paragraph detailing the roles that each author held to contribute to the authorship of the submission.

All references cited within the submission must be listed at the end of the main text file in Vancouver format (numbered).


Language & Text

For the submission title:

Capitalise all nouns, pronouns, adjectives, verbs, adverbs and subordinate conjunctions (i.e. as, because, although). Use lowercase for all articles, coordinate conjunctions and prepositions.

  • Slip-Sliding on a Yellow Brick Road: Stabilization Efforts in Afghanistan

Headings within the main text:

First level headings in the text should follow the same rule as the main title.

For lower-level subheadings, only capitalise first letter and proper nouns.

Headings should be under 75 characters.

Submissions must be made in English. Authors are welcome to use American or British spellings as long as they are used consistently throughout the whole of the submission.

  • Colour (UK) vs. Color (US)

When referring to proper nouns and normal institutional titles, the official, original spelling must be used.

  • World Health Organization, not World Health Organisation

American or English grammar rules may be used as long as they are used consistently and match the spelling format (see above). For instance, you may use a serial comma or not.

  • red, white, and blue OR red, white and blue

The font used should be Times New Roman, 12 point. Underlined text should be avoided whenever possible. Bold text or italicised text to emphasise a point are permitted, but should be restricted to minimal occurrences to maximise their efficiency.

Use bullet points to denote a list without hierarchy or order of value. If the list indicates a specific sequence then a numbered list must be used.

Lists should be used sparingly to maximise their impact.

Quotation marks
Use single quotation marks except for quotes within another speech, in which case double quotation marks are used.

Quotations that are longer than three lines in length must be in an indented paragraph separate from the main text.

The standard, non-italicised font must be used for all quotes.

It must be clear from the text and/or citation where the quote is sourced. If quoting from material that is under copyright then permission will need to be obtained from the copyright holder.

Acronyms & Abbreviations
With abbreviations, the crucial goal is to ensure that the reader – particularly one who may not be fully familiar with the topic or context being addressed – is able to follow along. Spell out almost all acronyms on first use, indicating the acronym in parentheses immediately thereafter. Use the acronym for all subsequent references.

  • Research completed by the World Health Organization (WHO) shows …

A number of abbreviations are so common that they do not require the full text on the first instance. Examples of these can be found here.

Abbreviations should usually be in capital letters without full stops.

  • USA, not U.S.A

Common examples from Latin origin do not follow this rule and should be lower case and can include full stops.

  • e.g., i.e., etc.

Use of footnotes/endnotes
Use endnotes rather than footnotes (we refer to these as ‘Notes’ in the online publication). These will appear at the end of the main text, before ‘References’.

All notes should be used only where crucial clarifying information needs to be conveyed.

Avoid using notes for purposes of referencing, with in-text citations used instead. If in-text citations cannot be used, a source can be cited as part of a note.

Please insert the endnote marker after the end punctuation.


Data & Symbols

Symbols are permitted within the main text and datasets as long as they are commonly in use or have explanatory definition on their first usage.

Hyphenation, em and en dashes
There is no set rule on the use of hyphenation between words, as long as they are consistently used.

Em dashes should be used sparingly. If they are present, they should denote emphasis, change of thought or interruption to the main sentence and can replace commas, parentheses, colons or semicolons.

  • The president’s niece—daughter of his younger brother—caused a media scandal when…

En dashes can be used to replace ‘to’ when indicating a range. No space should surround the dash.

  • 10-25 years
  • pp. 10-65

For numbers zero to nine please spell the whole words. Please use figures for numbers 10 or higher.

We are happy for authors to use either words or figures to represent large whole figures (i.e. one million or 1,000,000) as long as the usage is consistent throughout the text.

If the sentence includes a series of numbers then figures must be used in each instance.

  • Artefacts were found at depths of 5, 9, and 29 cm.

If the number appears as part of a dataset, in conjunction with a symbol or as part of a table then the figure must be used.

  • This study confirmed that 5% of…

If a sentence starts with a number it must be spelt, or the sentence should be re-written so that it no longer starts with the number.

  • Fifteen examples were found to exist…
  • The result showed that 15 examples existed…

Do not use a comma for a decimal place.

  • 2.43 NOT 2,43

Numbers that are less than zero must have ‘0’ precede the decimal point.

  • 0.24 NOT .24

Units of measurement
Symbols following a figure to denote a unit of measurement must be taken from the latest SI brochure. See for the full brochure.

Formulae must be proofed carefully by the author. Editors will not edit formulae. If special software has been used to create formulae, the way it is laid out is the way they will appear in the publication.


Figures & Tables

Figures, including graphs and diagrams, must be professionally and clearly presented. If a figure is not easy to understand or does not appear to be of a suitable quality, the editor may ask to re-render or omit it.

All figures must be cited within the main text, in consecutive order using Arabic numerals (e.g. Figure 1, Figure 2, etc.).

Each figure must have an accompanying descriptive main title. This should clearly and concisely summarise the content and/or use of the figure image. A short additional figure legend is optional to offer a further description.

  • Figure 1: 1685 map of London.
  • Figure 1: 1685 map of London. Note the addition of St Paul’s Cathedral, absent from earlier maps.

Figure titles and legends should be placed within the text document, either after the paragraph of their first citation, or as a list after the references.

The source of the image should be included, along with any relevant copyright information and a statement of authorisation (if needed).

  • Figure 1: Firemen try to free workers buried under piles of concrete and metal girders. Photo: Claude-Michel Masson. Reproduced with permission of the photographer.

If your figure file includes text then please present the font as Ariel, Helvetica, or Verdana. This will mean that it matches the typeset text.

NOTE: All figures must be uploaded separately as supplementary files during the submission process, if possible in colour and at a resolution of at least 300dpi. Each file should not be more than 20MB. Standard formats accepted are: JPG, TIFF, GIF, PNG, EPS. For line drawings, please provide the original vector file (e.g. .ai, or .eps).

Tables must be created using a word processor's table function, not tabbed text.

Tables should be included in the manuscript. The final layout will place the tables as close to their first citation as possible.

All tables must be cited within the main text, numbered with Arabic numerals in consecutive order (e.g. Table 1, Table 2, etc.).

Each table must have an accompanying descriptive title. This should clearly and concisely summarise the content and/or use of the table. A short additional table legend is optional to offer a further description of the table. The table title and legend should be placed underneath the table.

Tables should not include:

  • Rotated text
  • Colour to denote meaning (it will not display the same on all devices)
  • Images
  • Vertical or diagonal lines
  • Multiple parts (e.g. ‘Table 1a’ and ‘Table 1b’). These should either be merged into one table, or separated into ‘Table 1’ and ‘Table 2’.

NOTE: If there are more columns than can fit on a single page, then the table will be placed horizontally on the page. If it still can't fit horizontally on a page, the table will be broken into two.



In-text citations [Numeric]

Every use of information from other sources must be cited in the text so that it is clear that external material has been used. Each time a reference is being cited it should be in Vancouver style—represented by sequential numbers held within square brackets, within punctuation. Each citation should be a unique number. The reference list at the end of the publication will reflect this numbered list, with full reference data for each entry.

  • This is citing an existing source [1].

If citing multiple sources at the same point, separate the citations with a comma.

  • This is citing multiple existing sources [2,3,4].

Reference list
All citations must be listed at the end of the text file, in Vancouver style (numbered).

All reading materials should be included in ‘References’—works that have not been cited within the main text.

NOTE: DOIs should be included for all reference entries, where possible.

Reference format

This journal uses the Vancouver system—see below for examples of how to format references.

  • Books:

Author AA, Author BB. Title. Place of publication: Publisher; Year.

Leaver BL, Ehrman M, Shekhtman, B. Achieving success in second language acquisition. Cambridge; Cambridge University Press; 2005.

  • Chapters within books:

Author AA. Chapter title. In: Editor A, Editor B (eds.) Title of book. Series title and number and edition (if appropriate). Place of publication: Publisher; Year. Page numbers.

Jacobs GM, Hall S. Implementing cooperative learning. In Richards JC and Renandya WA (eds) Methodology in language teaching: An anthology of current practice. Cambridge; Cambridge University Press.  2002. pp. 52-58.

  • Journal articles:

Author AA, Author BB. Article title. Journal title. Year; Volume(issue): Pages. DOI

Radford M. Aesthetic and religious awareness among pupils: similarities and differences. British Journal of Music Education. 2001; 18(2): 151-159. DOI:

  • Newspaper articles (online):

Author A. Article title. Newspaper. Day Month Year of publication. URL (assessed day month year).

McMahon S. Fund new Victorian era. Herald Sun. (19 July 2010). (assessed 02 March 2012).

  • Newspaper articles (print):

Author A. Article title. Newspaper. Day month year of publication: page number.

Parker K. Plea for languages. Koori Mail, 3 December 2008: 19–20.

  • Conference papers:

Author A.  Title of paper. In: Editor AA, Editor BB. (eds.) Conference proceedings title, Place of publication: Publisher; Year. Page numbers.

Wittke M. Design, construction, supervision and long-term behaviour of tunnels in swelling rock. In: Van Cotthem A, Charlier R, Thimus JF, Tshibangu JP. (eds.) Eurock2006: multiphysics coupling and long-term behaviour in rock mechanics. In Proceedings of the International Symposium of the International Society for Rock Mechanics, EUROCK2006, 912 May 2006, Liège, Belgium. London: Taylor and Francis; 2006. 125–156.

  • Organisational publications/Grey literature:

Organisation. Title. Series/publication number. Place of publication: Publisher; Year. Retrieved from (if online).

Department of Health. Choosing Health: making healthier choices easier, CM6374. London: Stationery Office; 2001.

  • Theses and dissertations:

Author AA. Thesis title. Type of thesis. Academic institution; Year. DOI:

Murray BP. Prior knowledge, two teaching approaches for metacognition: Main idea and summarization strategies in reading. PhD thesis. Fordham University, New York. 2008.

  • Webpages / PDFs:

Author AA. Title of work. URL (accessed date month year).

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Australia's health 2004.

Submission Preparation Checklist

  1. The submission has not been previously published, in part of in whole, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  2. Any third-party-owned materials used have been identified with appropriate credit lines, and permission obtained from the copyright holder for all formats of the journal.
  3. All authors qualify as authors, as per the authorship guidelines, and have given permission to be listed on the submitted paper.
  4. Tables are all cited in the main text and are included within the text document.
  5. Figures are all cited in the main text and are uploaded as supplementary files. Figures/images have a resolution of at least 150dpi (300dpi or above preferred). The files are in one of the following formats: JPG, TIFF, GIF, PNG, EPS (to maximise quality, the original source file is preferred).
  6. The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines, which is found in About the Journal. Every effort has been made to ensure that author names are removed from the manuscript.

Copyright Notice

Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
  1. Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
  2. Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
  3. Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).

Privacy Statement

The names and email addresses entered in this journal site will be used exclusively for the stated purposes of this journal and will not be made available for any other purpose or to any other party.

Publication Fees

Global Biosecurity is committed to open science, open access, equity for researchers, and to keeping research accessible to the public. To make this possible we charge no fees to authors or readers.