Journal of Chinese Writing Systems
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Journal of Chinese Writing Systems

Published in Association with East China Normal Univeristy

Editor-in-Chief
Zang Kehe East China Normal University, China
Associate Editors
Françoise Bottéro Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), France
Park Heungsoo Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, Korea
Tiziana Lippiello Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Italy
Nguyen TuanCuong Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences, Vietnam
Ohgata Tohru Osaka Prefecture University, Japan
Stephen Selby Hong Kong Polytechnic University, China
Assistant Editors
Rui Guo East China Normal University, China
Ke Xu East China Normal University, China


eISSN: 25138510 | ISSN: 25138502 Frequency: Quarterly

Journal of Chinese Writing Systems is an international, peer-reviewed journal focusing on in-depth research of Chinese writing systems and encompassing a broad theoretical scope. It is sponsored by the Center for the Study and Application of Chinese Characters (CSACC), East China Normal University (ECNU), and published in partnership with SAGE Publishing. Journal of Chinese Writing Systems publishes both the English language articles and the Chinese language articles. The journal welcomes original articles, review articles, book reviews, comments, correspondence on research and applications of Chinese writing systems, which include modern Chinese characters, ancient scripts, Dongba scripts, and Shui scripts, etc., as well as the comparative studies on hieroglyphs of Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia. The journal is dedicated to the studies of morphology, i.e. the structure, formation and function of the scripts, symbols; the studies of interrelation between writing systems and the language, as well as the cognition and acquisition of Chinese characters.

Please submit papers and direct queries to editorial office at jcw@ecnu.edu.cn

Chinese writing systems, different from the alphabetical systems of Europe and America, which are often a natural part of language studies, turn out to be an independent academic concern. Chinese writing systems become a crucial factor in the construction of Chinese language, literature, philosophy, psychology, etc.. It is the fundamental influential element for all humanity studies concerning China.

Chinese writing systems are different in many aspects from major writing systems of western languages, with complex structures and the employment of thousands of individual characters. The research of them will reveal the diversity of the usage of symbols to record a language, thus makes them the important objects of investigation in the field of language studies.

Journal of Chinese Writing Systems is the first journal published which especially and systematically focuses on the Chinese writing systems, in an attempt to promote the understanding of Chinese writing and build a platform for the studies of related fields

The journal welcomes articles within the scope as below:

  • modern Chinese characters, ancient scripts
  • writings of Chinese minorities, e.g. Mongolian, Dongba scripts , etc.
  • comparative studies on hieroglyphs of Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia and on other Asian writing systems
  • semiotic concerns of Chinese writing systems
  • cognition and acquition of Chinese characters
  • the cross-disciplinary studies between Chinese writing systems and ancient history, ancient documents, archeology are also encouraged. The philosophical concerns of symbol and meaning are particularly welcome.
Advisory Editor
Ning Wang Beijing Normal University, China
Roderich Ptak Müchen University, Germany
Nguyen QuangHong Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences, Vietnam
Hongkai Sun Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, China
Atsuji Tetsuji Kyoto University, Japan
Ha Youngsam Kyungsung University, Korea
Editorial Board Member
Ágnes Birtalan Eötvös Loránd University, Hungary
Chuanren Ke University of Iowa, USA
Lee KyooKap Yonsei University, Korea
Lars Peter Laamann Univeristy of London, UK
Zhiji Liu East China Normal University, China
Hongyin Nie Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, China
Edward L. Shaughnessy University of Chicago, USA
Yuanlu Wang East China Normal University, China
Zhenwu Wu Jilin University, China
Jing Zhou East China Normal University, China
Managing Editor
Zhibiao Tang East China Normal University, China
Editorial Assistant
Deshao Zhang East China Normal University, China
Shaolin Zheng East China Normal University, China
Jianjun Zhu Shanghai International Studies University, China

Please see Chinese submission guidelines for author submitting Chinese papers here.

  1. Article types
  2. Editorial Policies
    2.1 Peer review policy
    2.2 Authorship
    2.3 Acknowledgments
    2.4 Funding
    2.5 Declaration of conflicting interests
  3. Publishing Policies
    3.1 Publication Ethics
    3.2 Contributor's publishing agreement
    3.3 Open Access and author archiving
    3.4 Permissions
  4. Preparing your manuscript
    4.1 Word processing formats
    4.2 Artwork, figures and other graphics
    4.3 Journal layout
    4.4 Reference style
    4.5 English language editing services
  5. Submitting your manuscript
    5.1 How to submit your manuscript
    5.2 Title, keywords and abstracts
    5.3 Corresponding author contact details
    5.4 Manuscript preparation checklist
  6. On acceptance and publication
    6.1 SAGE Production
    6.2 Access to your published article
    6.3 Online First publication
  7. Further Information

There are no fees payable to submit or publish in this journal.

Please read the guidelines below before submitting the manuscripts to jcw@ecnu.edu.cn. Please note that manuscripts not conforming to these guidelines may be returned.

Only manuscripts of sufficient quality that meet the aims and scope of Journal of Chinese Writing Systems will be reviewed.

As part of the submission process you will be required to warrant that you are submitting your original work, that you have the rights in the work, that you are submitting the work for first publication in the Journal and that it is not being considered for publication elsewhere and has not already been published elsewhere, and that you have obtained and can supply all necessary permissions for the reproduction of any copyright works not owned by you.

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1. Article types

Journal of Chinese Writing Systems publishes Original Article, Review Article, Book Review, and Letter to Editor-in-Chief.

Original Article is generally restricted to a maximum of 10,000 words, including all elements (title page, abstracts, key words, references, illustrations, etc.). Authors who suspect that their articles will have to be cut anyway should make the required deletions before submitting.

Review Article, Book Review are generally restricted to a maximum of 5,000 words, including title page , references, abstracts, key words and illustrations if necessary.

Comments on current issues and Letter to Editor-in-Chief is generally restricted to a maximum of 1,000 words, including biographies, no need to submit other elements such as abstracts, key words, references, illustrations, etc.

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2. Editorial policies

2.1 Peer review policy

Following a preliminary triage to eliminate submissions unsuitable for Journal of Chinese Writing Systems, all papers are sent out for review. The journal’s policy is to have manuscripts reviewed by two expert reviewers. Journal of Chinese Writing Systems utilizes a double-blind peer review process in which the reviewer and author’s names and information are withheld from the other. All manuscripts are reviewed as rapidly as possible and generally within two months. Reviewers make comments to the author and recommendations to the Editor-in-Chief, and then the Editor-in-Chief makes the final decision.

The Editor or members of the Editorial Board may occasionally submit their own manuscripts for possible publication in the journal. In these cases, the peer review process will be managed by alternative members of the Board and the submitting Editor/Board member will have no involvement in the decision-making process. 

2.2 Authorship

All parties who have made a substantive contribution to the article should be listed as authors. Principal authorship, authorship order, and other publication credits should be based on the relative scientific or professional contributions of the individuals involved, regardless of their status. A student is usually listed as principal author on any multiple-authored publication that substantially derives from the student’s dissertation or thesis.

2.3 Acknowledgements

All contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship should be listed in an Acknowledgements section. Examples of those who might be acknowledged include a person who provided purely technical help, writing assistance, or a department chair who provided only general support. 

2.3.1 Writing Assistance

Individuals who provided writing assistance, e.g. from a specialist communications company, do not qualify as authors and so should be included in the Acknowledgements section. Authors must disclose any writing assistance – including the individual’s name, company and level of input – and identify the entity that paid for this assistance.

It is not necessary to disclose use of language polishing services.

Please supply any personal acknowledgements separately to the main text to facilitate anonymous peer review.

2.4 Funding

Journal of Chinese Writing Systems additionally requires all Authors to acknowledge their funding in a consistent fashion under a separate heading.  Please visit Funding Acknowledgements page on the SAGE Journal Author Gateway to confirm the format of the acknowledgment text in the event of funding, or state that: This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors. 

2.5 Declaration of conflicting interests

Journal of Chinese Writing Systems encourages authors to include a declaration of any conflicting interests and recommends you review the good practice guidelines on the SAGE Journal Author Gateway.

It is the policy of Journal of Chinese Writing Systems to require a declaration of conflicting interests from all authors enabling a statement to be carried within the paginated pages of all published articles.

Please ensure that a ‘Declaration of Conflicting Interests’ statement is included at the end of your manuscript, after any acknowledgements and prior to the references. If no conflict exists, please state that ‘The Author(s) declare(s) that there is no conflict of interest’.

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3. Publishing policies

3.1 Publication ethics

SAGE is committed to upholding the integrity of the academic record. We encourage authors to refer to the Committee on Publication Ethics’ International Standards for Authors and view the Publication Ethics page on the SAGE Author Gateway.

3.1.1 Plagiarism

Journal of Chinese Writing Systems and SAGE take issues of copyright infringement, plagiarism or other breaches of best practice in publication very seriously. We seek to protect the rights of our authors and we always investigate claims of plagiarism or misuse of published articles. Equally, we seek to protect the reputation of the journal against malpractice. Submitted articles may be checked with duplication-checking software. Where an article, for example, is found to have plagiarised other work or included third-party copyright material without permission or with insufficient acknowledgement, or where the authorship of the article is contested, we reserve the right to take action including, but not limited to: publishing an erratum or corrigendum (correction); retracting the article; taking up the matter with the head of department or dean of the author's institution and/or relevant academic bodies or societies; or taking appropriate legal action.

3.1.2 Prior publication

If material has been previously published it is not generally acceptable for publication in a SAGE journal. However, there are certain circumstances where previously published material can be considered for publication. Please refer to the guidance on the SAGE Author Gateway or if in doubt, contact the Editor at jcw@ecnu.edu.cn

3.2 Contributor's publishing agreement

Before publication, SAGE requires the author as the rights holder to sign a Journal Contributor’s Publishing Agreement. SAGE’s Journal Contributor’s Publishing Agreement is an exclusive licence agreement which means that the author retains copyright in the work but grants SAGE the sole and exclusive right and licence to publish for the full legal term of copyright. Exceptions may exist where an assignment of copyright is required or preferred by a proprietor other than SAGE. In this case copyright in the work will be assigned from the author to the society. For more information please visit our Frequently Asked Questions on the SAGE Journal Author Gateway. 

3.3 Open Access and author archiving

Journal of Chinese Writing Systems offers optional open access publishing via the SAGE Choice programme. For more information please visit the SAGE Choice website. For information on funding body compliance, and depositing your article in repositories, please visit SAGE Publishing Policies on our Journal Author Gateway.

3.4 Permissions

Authors are responsible for obtaining permission from copyright holders for reproducing any illustrations, tables, figures or lengthy quotations previously published elsewhere. For further information including guidance on fair dealing for criticism and review, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions on the SAGE Journal Author Gateway

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4. Preparing your manuscript

4.1 Word processing formats

Preferred format for the text and tables of your manuscript is Word DOC. The text should be double-spaced throughout and with a minimum of 3cm for left and right hand margins and 5cm at head and foot. Text should be standard 10 or 12 point. Word template is available on the Manuscript Submission Guidelines page of our Author Gateway.

4.2 Artwork, figures and other graphics

For guidance on the preparation of illustrations, pictures and graphs in electronic format, please visit SAGE’s Manuscript Submission Guidelines.

Figures supplied in colour will appear in colour online regardless of whether or not these illustrations are reproduced in colour in the printed version. For specifically requested colour reproduction in print, you will receive information regarding the costs from SAGE after receipt of your accepted article. 

4.4 Journal layout

Journal of Chinese Writing Systems conforms to the SAGE house style. View the SAGE UK House Style guidelines. 

4.5 Reference style

Journal of Chinese Writing Systems adheres to the SAGE Harvard reference style. View the SAGE Harvard guidelines to ensure your manuscript conforms to this reference style.

If you use EndNote to manage references, you can download the SAGE Harvard EndNote output file.

4.6 English language editing services

Authors seeking assistance with English language editing, translation, or figure and manuscript formatting to fit the journal’s specifications should consider using SAGE Language Services. Visit SAGE Language Services on our Journal Author Gateway for further information. 

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5. Submitting your manuscript

5.1 How to submit your manuscript

Journal of Chinese Writing Systems will be hosted on SAGE Track, a web based online submission and peer review system powered by ScholarOne™ Manuscripts. The submission and peer review site at SAGE is under construction. Please submit your papers to jcw@ecnu.edu.cn for now. 

5.2 Title, keywords and abstracts

Please supply a title, short title, an abstract and keywords to accompany your article. The title, keywords and abstract are key to ensuring readers find your article online through online search engines such as Google. Please refer to the information and guidance on how best to title your article, write your abstract and select your keywords by visiting the SAGE Journal Author Gateway for guidelines on How to Help Readers Find Your Article Online.

5.3 Corresponding author contact details

Provide full contact details for the corresponding author including email, mailing address and telephone numbers. Academic affiliations are required for all co-authors. These details should be presented separately to the main text of the article to facilitate anonymous peer review.

5.4 Manuscript preparation checklist

5.4.1 Title page

(a) Title of the paper which should be short and succinct

(b) Full Name(s) of author(s), affiliation (s), and email(s)

(c) The full name, affiliation, email and mailing address of the corresponding author 

5.4.2 Anonymous main document

(a) Title

(b) Abstract

(c) Key words

(d) Main text

(e)Funding (if any)

(f) Acknowledgements (if any)

(g) Declaration of conflicting interests

(h) Notes (if any)

(h) References

(i) Appendix: individual images, figures, etc. (if any)

IMPORTANT: Authors are required to prepare the title page and anonymous main documents separately. Please remove names and affiliations in the Acknowledgements if any for peer-review.

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6. On acceptance and publication

6.1 SAGE Production

Your SAGE Production Editor will keep you informed as to your article’s progress throughout the production process. Proofs will be sent by PDF to the corresponding author and should be returned promptly.  Authors are reminded to check their proofs carefully to confirm that all author information, including names, affiliations, sequence and contact details are correct, and that Funding and Conflict of Interest statements, if any, are accurate.

6.2 Access to your published article

SAGE provides authors with online access to their final article.

6.3 Online First publication

Online First allows final revision articles (completed articles in queue for assignment to an upcoming issue) to be published online prior to their inclusion in a final journal issue which significantly reduces the lead time between submission and publication. For more information please visit our Online First Fact Sheet

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7. Further Information

Any correspondence, queries or additional requests for information on the manuscript submission process should be sent to the Journal of Chinese Writing Systems editorial office as follows:

Dr Zhi-Biao Tang

Managing Editor  jcw@ecnu.edu.cn

The Center for the Study and Application of Chinese Characters (CSACC)

EastChinaNormalUniversity (ECNU)

NO.3663, North of Zhongshan Road

Room A211, Building of Science

Shanghai, China 200062

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