Journal of Natural Language Engineering: Call for special issue

The area of Natural Language Engineering, and Natural Language Processing in general, is following the trend of many other areas in becoming highly specialised, with a number of application-orientated and narrow-domain topics emerging or growing in importance. These developments, often coinciding with a lack of related literature, necessitate and warrant the publication of specialised volumes focusing on a specific topic of interest to the Natural Language Processing (NLP) research community.

The Journal of Natural Language Engineering (JNLE), which now features six 160-page issues per year and has increased its impact factor for third consecutive year, invites proposals for special issues on a competitive basis regarding any topics surrounding applied NLP which have emerged as important recent developments and that have attracted the attention of a number of researchers or research groups. In recent years, Calls for Proposals for special issues have resulted in high-quality outputs and this year we look forward to another successful competition.

Topics could cover a variety of methods, tasks, resources and applications from Natural Language Processing, Computational Linguistics, Speech and Language Processing, Text Analytics and related areas but should preferably focus on the practical implications of operation on a large scale. Topics covering NLP methods, tasks and resources could include, but are not limited to: POS tagging; parsing; semantic role labelling; word sense disambiguation; anaphora and coreference resolution; textual entailment; named entity recognition; computational treatment of multiword expressions; natural language generation; speech recognition; speech synthesis; multimodal processing; statistical methods in Natural Language Engineering; machine learning; word embedding; deep learning; evaluation methodologies; corpora and ontologies. Topics covering NLP applications could include, but are not limited to: machine translation including neural machine translation; translation memory and translation tools; summarisation; simplification; information retrieval; information extraction; question answering; text and web mining; opinion mining; fact checking; profiling and NLP for biomedical texts.

Calls for special issue proposals may be based on a successful workshop or a body of work associated with a particular group or section of the community. In all cases, however, the reviewing process of the accepted papers must be rigorous and all submissions must be reviewed by at least three members of the Guest Editorial Board or other suitable reviewers agreed by the JNLE Editors. In the case of papers previously submitted to workshops, the Guest Editors will not be able to re-use previous workshop reviews. In addition, the call for papers of the accepted proposals must be open to all interested parties and all authors will be given equal treatment; in the case of proposals based on previous workshops, submissions cannot be limited to workshop participants only. Prospective proposers are also encouraged to consult the successful Journal columns “Industry Watch” and “Emerging Trends” for additional inspiration.

Interested editors have the option of preliminary feedback by emailing expressions of interest accompanied by a brief description of the intended special issue to the Executive Editor ( He will give a brief indication of whether the topic is appropriate to Natural Language Engineering. In the case of initial positive feedback, the prospective Guest Editors will be asked to submit a proposal for a special issue that will be reviewed by the Editors of the Journal and by other members of the Journal Editorial Board.

The proposal for a special issue should include a brief outline of the field and rationale as to why it is important to launch a special issue on the particular topic of interest at the current time. It should include a relevant literature survey (related previous special issues, volumes, workshop and conference proceedings) and should explain the added value of the proposed special issue against the background of other relevant or competing publications and volumes (if applicable).  It is desirable that a rough estimate of expected submissions to the special issue be provided and justified. The proposals should also include a tentative Guest Editorial Board. It is desirable that at least one (preferably two) of the members of the Guest Editorial Board is on the JNLE Editorial Board. The proposal should also include a tentative time-scale for the production of the special issue (the time-scale committed to in the proposal should be adhered to, if the proposal is accepted) and information about the prospective Guest Editors such as relevant experience, publications etc. All special issues are required to offer a survey of the field as its first article which can be written either by the Guest Editors or by an invited author / authors. The special issues should consist of 160 pages as with the regular issues; exceptionally, 144 pages can be accepted as well.


  • Deadline for submission of special issue proposals:
    20 November 2017
    (proposals to be emailed to with a copy to
  • Notification of acceptance/rejection:
    18 December 2017
  • Calls for papers related to the successful proposals:
    15 January 2018 for the first proposal
    March-April 2018 for the second proposal;
    June 2018-October 2018 for the rest of the accepted proposals (if applicable)