CDLJ&B editorial policy

The Cuneiform Digital Library Journal (CDLJ) and the Cuneiform Digital Library Bulletin (CDLB) are refereed electronic journals for Assyriology seeking the submission of articles that combine high academic caliber with an attempt to exploit the potential of electronic publication.

The aim of both journals is to publish a range of articles offering text analyses of 4th and 3rd millennium documents (incorporating text, photographs, data, drawings, interpretations), treatments of early language, of writing, and of cuneiform paleography, of Mesopotamian administrative history, mathematics, metrology, and of the technology of modern cuneiform editing. Thematic contributions need not be restricted to 3rd millennium archives. Notes about texts included in the CDLI data set will be linked to their corresponding pages, and vice versa. There is no word count or page limit for submissions to the CDLJ. Our only requirements are that articles should contribute to the knowledge of the economic, social and intellectual history of early literate Babylonia, and that they should exploit the capabilities of the WWW medium. The CDLB on the other hand offers contributors a forum for the rapid distribution of short notes of NABU size dealing with the major themes of the CDLI. The language of submissions is to be English.

The journals intend to publish articles in their web pages as soon as they have successfully completed the process of peer review and the insertion of eventual corrections and additions by the author(s). All articles will be archived under the formula YEAR:NUMBER, and will appear in two formats, insofar as a dual presentation is possible. Articles will on the one hand be presented in HTML pages with a provisional convention to represent Assyriological diacritics; on the other hand, the same articles will be downloadable in PDF format, thus allowing readers a hardcopy version of contributions including standard diacritics.

Geographical scope

The geographical focus of journal publications will necessarily be Mesopotamia, particularly the southern half of modern Iraq. Comparative articles dealing with, for instance, proto-Elamite or archaic Chinese, will be welcome.

Chronological scope

The editors see the journals as forums for the electronic dissemination of contributions to the history, in its broadest sense, of the 4th and 3rd millennium B.C. Analyses of orthography, lexicography, administrative history and related topics derived from 2nd and 1st millennium corpora will be considered for inclusion. Articles will be retrievable by period and subject.

Subject matter

The journals will publish articles on a restricted range of Assyriological issues, including editions of smaller tablet collections using electronic media, archival reports, socio-economic studies, and theory and methodology. Articles will be chosen both for their academic content and their approach to the opportunities provided by electronic publication.

Publication schedule

The journals intend to reduce the delay between submission and publication dates well below that of academic print journals. Both the CDLB and the CDLJ will, however, be refereed journals and thus will make every effort to care for a high level of academic discourse in their pages. Authors should expect a two to four month interval between submission of a draft text with illustrations and its publication for substantive contributions to the Journal, at most two months for those made to the Bulletin. The time to publication will include a period of preprint posting for all contributions (see below).

Guidelines for Authors

If you are about to make plans for the publication of an Assyriological paper, please consider what the journals can offer:

  • Publication in a Peer-Reviewed Journal.
  • Rapid World-Wide distribution.
  • Internconnectivity of data, interpretation and discussion.
  • The ability to let others analyse your data on-line, or download data to their own computers.
  • A variety of indexing methods which allow both structured searching and full-text indexing.
  • Color graphics throughout your paper.

See our Guidelines for Authors for further details, from how to submit a proposal to our style guidelines.

Peer review

Peer review in Assyriological journals has not always been as strict as might be wished. We see an even greater danger of non-refereed publications in the internet, and are thus intent on establishing and following a strict process of review of all submissions to this journal.

We will strive to make the editorial process move as rapidly as possible. All submissions to the CDLJ will be screened by CDLI staff at UCLA for their compatibility with the goals of the journal, following which they will be circulated to at least two outside referees, either members of the CDLJ editorial board, or to acknowledged specialists in fields closely related to the topic of the submission. Submissions to the CDLB will move more rapidly through a shortened review process, with a quick review of their Internet compatibility and academic quality by LA staff, followed by thier review by one outside specialist before they are posted in the CDLB pages.

Preprints, updates

CDLJ&B will embed in the process of online publication a preprint phase for all contributions. In the case of more substantive articles in the Journal, this preprint phase will last 60 days; shorter Bulletin articles will be posted as preprints for a period of 30 days. This phase of preliminary publication will follow the completion of peer review and is meant merely to give the author(s) the opportunity to correct typographical or bibliographical errors, or to insert important data that has become available subsequent to submission and manuscript changes initiated by peer review. The PDF files corresponding to marked up preprint versions of submissions will be clearly identified as such. Revision of finished pages requires substantial editorial effort, so that a preprint phase should not be seen by author(s) as an opportunity to post unfinished research.

Journal editors will not change content of contributions once they have been formally published (that is, following removal of the "preprint" etiquette), even if mistakes are discovered or if new data would render an interpretation obsolete. However we welcome subsequent addenda or 'new editions' of research published in the journal or bulletin which will be linked to the original piece of work (and vice versa), thus building on its foundations. Authors are requested to contact the editors about all their update requirements.


The journals will publish articles in English. Given the international force of the English language, we believe that this choice will guarantee the broadest possible readership, without severely limiting the ability of scholars to make their ideas known to our public.


The journals will not, as a rule, publish book reviews or review print publications, but please feel free to contact us if you think you have a special case.

However, the CDLB does encourage reviews of works published in an electronic format (either on CD-ROM or as webpages). E-publications with print counterparts are also considered. We will also review specifically philological software packages, but our policy is generally not to review anything that is solely published in print.