About the Journal

Focus and Scope

The International Journal of Civil Service Reform and Practice (IJCSRP) is a practitioner-oriented, peer-reviewed, open access journal, published biannually by the Astana Civil Service Hub (ACSH).

The Journal aims to provide access to global knowledge on civil service reform theory and practice to audiences in the Commonwealth of Independent States, Central Asia, the Caucasus, other ACSH participating countries and beyond, by publishing high quality papers based on original and novel research in the field. Specifically, the IJCSRP publishes papers dealing with the topics of civil service reform theory and practice, public sector human resources management and development, public service delivery, and ethics and anti-corruption practices. The Journal accepts manuscripts in the form of research papers, articles, case studies, discussion notes, and book reviews.  

As such, the IJCSRP intends to serve as a bridge between civil service related scholarship and civil service professionals. Specifically, it strives to inform decision makers and practitioners in the ACSH participating countries, as well as a broader readership of interested academicians and public officials, on the most significant existing and evolving issues in civil service area regionally and globally.

Peer Review Process

Selection process

Manuscripts are accepted for publication by the decision of the Editor-in-Chief based on the evaluation and results of a double blind peer-review process. However, the editor may reject any submitted work shall it not meet the journal publishing standards or be inconsistent with the journal’s scope.

Reviewers are assigned from the peer-reviewers’ roster comprising of field scholars and subject-matter experts. If a manuscript is conditionally accepted, the author will be asked to revise it in accordance with the suggested commentaries. In such a case, authors are highly recommended to provide a detailed note of their responses to the suggested revisions. Decision on the review process is normally communicated to the authors within a period of up to three months from the date of receipt of a paper.

Peer-review principles:

Independent and rigorous peer review process is critical to ensure the manuscripts’ highest scholarly quality consistent with the prescribed scientific discipline.

In carrying out a peer review, reviewers are required to comply with the following principles adapted from the Committee on Publication Ethics’ (COPE) Guidelines for peer reviewers[1]:

- Only agree to peer review manuscripts that relate to their subject expertise to ensure adequate assessment that should be completed in a timely manner;

- Treat information about the reviewed manuscript with due confidentiality and do not use any information obtained during the review process for personal or other party’s advantage or disadvantage;

- State all potential conflicting or competing interests (e.g. personal, financial, intellectual, professional, political or religious) and consult the Editor-in-Chief to seek for clarification in case of uncertainty with regard to a relevance of interest;

- Be objective and constructive in their assessment; not allow their reviews to be influenced (either positively or negatively) by the origins of a manuscript, by the nationality, political or religious views, gender and other attributes of the authors;

- Contact the Journal immediately if circumstances arise that will prevent them from completing the assessment in a set timeframe and inform on an accurate estimate of the time they will require to submit their review if still asked to do so;

- Upon submission of their review, reviewers should promptly respond to the Journal’s possible queries with regard to their review and provide additional information/feedback required;

- Notify the Journal if anything relevant appears after the submission of their review that might affect their initial comments and recommendation.

Manuscripts should be assessed by at least two reviewers. Each reviewer will receive from one to three manuscripts to be assessed, and returned with the comments within a timeframe of four weeks. The following are the criteria for review which are detailed in the Peer-review – Quality Assurance Form:

- Adherence of the manuscript content to the theme of the publication;

- Comprehensive and thorough elaboration of the concept under scrutiny;

- Clarity in elaborating a certain argument and providing sound justification for it.

[1] Hames, Irene (on behalf of COPE Council) (2013), “COPE Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers”, [online] accessed on 11 August 2015, http://publicationethics.org/files/Peer%20review%20guidelines_0.pdf

Publication Frequency

The IJCSRP is published biannually.

Open Access Policy

This journal provides immediate open access to its content on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports a greater global exchange of knowledge.