- The publication is overseen by an Editor-in-Chief (currently Robert Clark, one of the Founding Editors) who focuses on editorial and commercial strategy, and a Managing Editor (currently Cristina Sandru) who deals with all day-to-day matters. They are advised by an elected Policy Committee. They also report annually to shareholders on financial matters, and regularly consult with them via email circulars and personal correspondence.
- Editorial decisions concerning the Encyclopedia, including decisions concerning its content, format and distribution, are made by the Editor-in-Chief in consultation with the Managing Editor and the Policy Committee, and the members of the Editorial Board.
- The Literary Encyclopedia is divided into Parts, Volumes and Chapters. Parts are usually defined by country and may be subdivided into Volumes devoted to historical periods. Volumes may include Chapters devoted to particularly prominent authors, major genres, or to special topics.
- Volumes are edited by small groups of scholars who between them have the necessary generic expertise. Depending on the size of the Volume, Volume Editors will either commission directly from individual contributors or appoint Chapter Editors to develop coverage of named Chapters on individual authors, or in some cases on specific genres.
- Whilst there is a hierarchy of status in this structure, all who work in an editorial capacity in one Part are encouraged to see themselves as a collective Editorial Team for the whole Part (e.g. all of French literature; all of English literature etc. form a Part). It is an aim of the publication to enhance co-operative working between scholars and thus create on-going communities which will take ownership of and responsibility for the publication.
- All articles published in the Encyclopedia carry a prominent indication of the volume number and title to which they belong, with the names of current and former editors. By clicking on the volume number, readers can see all articles and stubs included in that volume.
- Editors accomplish nearly all commissioning and publication through an online Editorial Desk devoted to the Volume (a particular Editorial Desk can also serve several volumes if this is deemed more practical). This way of working minimizes the time spent editing and publishing contributions.
- Contributions to the Encyclopedia are usually solicited by invitation from a member of the Editorial Board. However, qualified potential contributors may send to the Managing Editor or an appropriate member of the Editorial Board a proposal to write on an Encyclopedia topic. This proposal should be accompanied by a curriculum vitae.
- By qualified, we mean those persons with accredited PhDs in Literature (or a related discipline) who have published refereed works on the topic of the proposed entry. By refereed works we mean either articles in respected, peer-reviewed journals or books which have been published by respected publishing houses and which have undergone the usual peer review process prior to publication.
- In order to support and encourage early-career researchers and young scholars, the Encyclopedia will accept contributions from highly-recommended PhD students in the final years of their research, provided they pass the usual reviewing process. Prior to commissioning an article proposed by such a young scholar, editors are advised to solicit an additional writing sample to accompany their CV (part of a thesis chapter, a published article or conference paper etc.).
- By Encyclopedia topic, we mean an author (literary writer or person of cultural authority in other fields of human endeavour – philosophers, historians, scientists, artists, major political figures etc.), written work by an above-described ‘author’, or contextual article on a variety of literary and cultural matters (for more details, see the relevant section under ‘Information for Authors’) (1) either already listed in the Encyclopedia as a stub (lacking an article) or (2) not yet listed, but that can be legitimately seen to belong in any of Encyclopedia’s volumes.
The members of the Editorial Board reserve the right to compare the qualifications of any person submitting an unsolicited request with those of other potential authors who would be qualified to write the entry in question.
- All entries, whether solicited or approved, will be reviewed by one or more of the subject editors on our Editorial Board, or by one or more external referees (where we do not currently have specialist editorial supervision). Authors are expected to engage any constructive criticisms they receive during the editing process, prior to publication. Authors should note, however, that no matter whether they have been invited or approved by one of these subject editors, our goal of producing a high-quality reference work will occasionally mean that some submitted entries may not be accepted for publication.
- Readers of the Encyclopedia are encouraged to contact the Encyclopedia with comments, corrections, and other suggestions for improvements.
- Because the Literary Encyclopedia is designed to be a dynamic reference work, authors are responsible for maintaining and periodically updating their entries. Specifically, authors are expected to: 1. update their entries regularly, especially in response to important new research on the topic of the entry, and 2. revise their entries in light of any valid criticism they receive, whether it comes from the subject editors on our Editorial Board, other members of the profession, or interested readers. In connection with 1, authors should update the Recommended Readings and the Web Resources sections of their entries regularly, to keep pace with significant new publications, both in print and online. In the case of contemporary authors, editors should be alerted to any new title published by the author, so that it is included in the database. Likewise, if an author has deceased, the editors need to be informed of this matter, and the author profile revised accordingly. If important new publications affect the currency of the main text, then the main text should be altered so as to reflect the important ideas in the new research. The length of time required for a “timely” revision will be negotiable and will both respect the author's current commitments and reflect how seriously the piece fails to accommodate new research or the seriousness of any valid criticism. Articles which require revision but whose authors do not respond to our requests for revising their articles, or decline such revision, may be withdrawn from the Encyclopedia at the discretion of the Editorial Board and recommissioned.
- The views expressed by the authors in their entries are their own and do not necessarily reflect those of the Literary Encyclopedia, the Encyclopedia's Editors or of anyone else associated with the Encyclopedia.