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3. Writing Call for Papers

Call for Papers 


When an academic conference is organized or a special issue of an academic journal is published, a so-called 'Call for Participation' or 'Call for Papers' is issued well in advance. At that time, the organizers or editors ask anyone who feels called upon to submit a proposal for a paper on the theme or topic in question. It must be new academic research.


Examples from academia:

 “2019 Annual Conference Association for Art History”,

 “ CAA 106th Annual Conference Los Angeles, February 21–24, 2018” and


Information provided by the organizers:

  • general information about the conference or publication (title of the conference or the publication, date, place, information about the city, etc.)

  • the theme of the conference or publication and the way in which the organizers want to approach this theme academically.

  • the procedure: where and when the contribution must be submitted

  • the layout of the contribution: an abstract with a (provisional) title that covers the content and limited to 250 to 400 words

  • the date on which the panel members will communicate their decision on your participation



If you respond to a Call for Papers or a Call for Participation, it is not a certainty that your contribution will be accepted. You apply, as it were, for participation. A Call for Papers/Participation offers you as an academic the opportunity to present your work in a publication or at a conference. A selection committee will assess which papers are and which are not permitted.


Information to be provided by the applicant:

  • abstract with provisional title that covers the content, within the word count

  • your CV



The use of the term paper among academics is often limited to the above-mentioned situations. When a researcher wants to contribute to a book or journal on their own initiative, this is referred to as an essay proposal.



Sometimes the papers of a conference are bundled and published. These publications are called Conference Proceedings. The organizers can also ask the speakers to develop their presentation into an essay. The tone must then be converted from 'spoken language' to a more 'neutral tone'. You might even be asked to change the focus to make the bundle more coherent.

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